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plclegal, Barrister
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 8040
Experience:  Barrister at law
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Would like to appeal a divorce settlement from 2008, Yes

Customer Question

Hi would like to appeal a divorce settlement from 2008
JA: What steps have been taken? Have any papers been filed in family court?
Customer: Yes since 2008.
at the time the agreement was made, I signed under duress driven by the emotional and financial stress of being abandoned to raise a family alone, and the separation itself, whilst being unable to afford legal representation. I would therefore like consideration to be taken towards nullifying the agreement entirely
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: Romford
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: My ex husband passed away in 2019 but remarried and I still live in the property with my adult children
Submitted: 20 days ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Virtual-mod replied 19 days ago.

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.

Thank you!
Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

Hello, my name is*****’ll do my best to assist you today and I’m sorry that you are going through this. I appreciate that is is important that you find a resolution as soon as possible.

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

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Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

I do think that it is unlikely that the court would entertain an application to nullify this order given that your ex husband has since passed away. The fact is that a judge has to agree that the settlement is fair at the time, which will also have been the case for you, so even if you feel that you weren't in a great place at the time, the judge would have not made the order if it was unfair to you.

However, could you perhaps please clarify what it is you feel you would change, and I'll do my best to see if there is any margin for manoeuvre here?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
File attached (GSP1ST5)
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
this is the court order from 2017. I’m being charged occupational rent even though I’ve tried to sale from 2011-2021. The sale a
Was stopped due to him even though I tried to sale
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
In relation to Case Number ***** and the ongoing dispute with ***** ***** regarding the distribution of assets and associated costs of Daniel Severin Williams estate, I have the following inferences for consideration for future legal correspondence and proceedings:1) all terms relating to responsibilities prior to Huldah ***** ***** ceasing full time education (as outlined in point 1ai)) are hereby irrelevant following Huldah finishing education in July 20172) it is greed that conveyancing costs are to be split equally in line with the agreement3) at the time the agreement was made, I signed under duress driven by the emotional and financial stress of being abandoned to raise a family alone, and the separation itself, whilst being unable to afford legal representation. I would therefore like consideration to be taken towards nullifying the agreement entirely4) both Daniel and myself failed to uphold certain contractual obligations under this agreement, however my failures have not resulted in financial damage to Daniel/Martha, whereas his failures have caused financial damage to me which should be addressed appropriately before the final settlement is agreed. I did not personally make mortgage payments as stipulated in 1b) however this was because Daniel didn’t make available all information necessary in order to do so. Nonetheless, he made the payments himself causing no financial loss to either party. I also did not transfer the legal and beneficial interest in the property at Mero Dominica as stipulated in point 5, however this did not prevent Daniel from obtaining financial benefit from the land as his name was present on the Deed. On the contrary to this, I have never received a contribution, be it upfront or via reimbursement, in relation to the numerous structural repairs undertaken at*****since the agreement was made as outlined below. Under point 1d), Daniel should have shared these costs equally, and his failure to do so, along with the 8% interest per annum (Judgement rate) should be factored into the settlement per point 1e). I was also left to bare the cost of buildings insurance (point 1c)) alone as Daniel obtained his own and at no point did he share the pertinent details of that policy with me5) finally, I believe Occupational Rent should hereby be removed from the settlement. This is due to Daniel’s breach of contract in relation to open market offers on the property at*****prior to the family court order dated 6 September 2017. As attached, I have evidence of several offers which were accepted by myself and then declined by Daniel, something which he wasn’t permitted to do until the September 2017 ruling, despite these offers being in line with numerous valuations from local estate agents during the period May 2011 to present. Had one of these offers been accepted by Daniel, the property would have been sold long before Occupational Rent became payable. This is a clear attempt to delay the sale in order to introduce Occupational Rent and this method has still been used by Daniel and Martha since 2017 in order to elongate this period. You will see from the attachments that the offers were very realistic in relation to the valuations at those time periods, and the expectations set by Daniel/Martha for the valuation of the property are incredibly unrealistic. Their unrealistic expectations and breach of contract is resulting in financial penalty to me by way of Occupational Rent and this should thereby be removed from settlement, particularly as Daniel/Martha have not been operating in good faith. Their unrealistic expectation of the valuation have not just been in terms of sale value, but also in terms of rent expectation where they originally requested £1,450 per month (in respect of 50% share), which I had never agreed to due to how over inflated it is for the area and quality of the property.
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
These are my points
Expert:  plclegal replied 18 days ago.

Hello, I have reviewed this today. Firstly, whether or not you had representation is irrelevant to the making of the order.

Again, I have to repeat the earlier point, that the court had to also feel the order was fair in the circumstances at the time, and a judge had to sign off on it, and as such there aren't grounds to overturn the whole thing, in my view. Setting aside this kind of order only succeeds in the rarest of cases, and only normally where there has been serious financial fraud for example.

You could arguably have enforced the order at any point when he refused to accept reasonable offers - the court could have overruled him white easily on that issue had you made that application.

Conduct has been poor, arguably on both sides according to your narrative, so perhaps tread carefully.

But you have good arguments to make in respect of both points 4 and 5. I would anticipate that conveyancing costs would be split equally in respect of point 2.

I hope that this answers your question.

Expert:  plclegal replied 18 days ago.

Thank you again for visiting JustAnswer, please do let me know if you have any additional questions in the future. I am also happy to answer any new questions on other topics that you may have, you can request me by putting “for PLCLEGAL” at the start of the new thread. Best wishes, Peter