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plclegal
plclegal, Barrister
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 4256
Experience:  Barrister at law
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My husband and I are separating and we will need to try to

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Hello. My husband and I are separating and we will need to try to split our finances. The key considerations (as far as we are aware) are as follows:
JA: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?
Customer: No papers filed yet - we are at the very beginning of trying to establish a pattern that works for our children. I earn more than my husband - generally 60/40, our three children (all under the age of 16) will be living with me in our family home and my husband will be moving out. They will stay with him two nights every fortnight. We have around £50k equity in the family home, which includes £12k inheritance for our boys from their great grandparent. We will be selling a property that we rent out, which has around £50k equity in it. We also have a property abroad which we will likely sell but not at the current time.
JA: Family Court normally sits in a local County and Magistrates' Court. Do you know the location of the court? If not, what county do you live in?
Customer: We live in the UK
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No, I don't think so. Thank-you
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Hello - sorry, to add, we have around £20k in unsecured debt. We are jointly covering the expenses incurred in my husband setting himself up in a new home, and I am keen for us to make sure that the financial split is fair.

Hello, my name is Peter and I’ll do my best to assist you today.

Please bear in mind as this is an email service and not live chat I may not respond immediately.

I'm reviewing your question and will revert back to you shortly.

OK - I have reviewed - how can I assist?

Thanks for your reply - it went into a new thread so I have closed that and posted here for continuity:

Hello
I would appreciate some guidance as to how we need to consider splitting the finances. Whilst we don't wish to go straight into formal legalities we will need to split our finances and the only guidance we have regarding child maintenance is from the Gov.uk calculator. There are mixed reports from people as to how accurate it is and i would like us to be as accurate as we can in the interim, to help us all to get used to our new circumstances, respectively.
Also, should we be looking at a 50/50 split of assets and debts or differently given that i earn a fair amount more than my husband?

Perhaps if you could set out the respective salaries/ assets/ pensions and the value of any property that you both own I can give you an indication of what would be appropriate in the circumstances?

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Sorry - that was in my initial enquiry - I thought you had access to it. I will go through it below:
Our family home is worth around £335000 and we have around £50k equity in it, which includes £12k inheritance for our three children from their late great grandparent, so it will be released to them when they each turn 18. They are currently 13,11 and 5.
I will be staying in the family home with our three children and my husband will be living elsewhere, having our boys for two nights every fortnight.
We also have a property that we rent out, which is worth around £168000 and we have around £55k equity in that property.
We also have a house in France (worth around £80k) which has around £40 equity in it, pending sale, which we will probably hold off on until after Brexit. We spend around £600 a month on this mortgage and house upkeep etc.
I have generally earned more than my husband for the majority of our marriage (almost 20 years) at a roughly 60/40 split. I currently earn £75k and my husband £41k.
We also have around £20k unsecured debt.
We both pay into a pension fund - myself at 11% and my husband at 9%.

Thanks - let me know if you require anything further.

OK, thank you for the clarification.

The starting point is a 50/50 split, as you correctly say.

The fact you earn more would be something that may mean you had to redress the balance, but given the fact that the children are remain gin in your care this negates that in my view.

The CMS guidelines are a starting point.

If you can remain in the family home and the sale of the other assets is enough to allow your husband to move on, then this arrangement should be seen as fair to both of you, in the circumstances.

This is the key - fairness. This is the benchmark that a judge will consider when looking at the arrangement you have made and deciding whether to uphold it in a court order.

Can I clarify anything?

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Thank you. Am I in a position to protect my pension? I contribute more than twice (in actual monetary amount) my husband's monthly contribution and I believe I have been paying into my pension for a few years longer than he has, and I am three years younger than him, so I would feel it unfair for me to have to hand over some of my pension in around 25 years time, when we have always just pooled our resources throughout our marriage so he has benefited from the higher income throughout - this is how i would always want it to be, but for my pension in the years to come, this feels different.

The general rule is that pensions accrued during the marriage will be shared/ equalised to make sure both parties benefit equally - but this does nor apply to future payments once an order is made.

Can I assist you further with your question?

If you have further questions, you can always come back to me.

In the meantime, if you could take a second to provide a 5 star rating (top right of your screen) I'll be credited for my time spent responding to your question.

Kind regards,

Peter

Customer: replied 14 days ago.
Thank you for your responses. It feels as though we would be best placed to involve solicitors sooner rather than later to enable us to be guided through the complexities of the process.

You would need a solicitor to draft the consent order for you in any event, so yes this is not a bad idea.

The link here allows you to search for a local family law specialist:

https://solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk/

I hope this clarifies things?

If so, please take a second to rate my response with 5 stars as this will credit me for my time.

Thanks and do let me know if you have further questions, follow ups are part of the service, even if you have already taken the time to rate for me.

Kind regards,

Peter

 

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