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Stuart J
Stuart J, Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 26470
Experience:  Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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I want to divorce my wife. We both agreed we no longer

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Hi I want to divorce my wife. We both agreed we no longer match. But becouse of that my wife want everything what's I been working for at least 50% which I can't agree casue wife been working as well and rarely giving anything towards my investments. My question is, if I will go to court and proof that my wife unreasonable behavior make me wanted to divorce her
JA: Were any of the assets acquired before the marriage? Or given through an inheritance?
Customer: Did she will still get part of everything I have been working for towards my and our daughter future?
JA: Where are you located? Divorce laws vary by location.
Customer: North West, UK
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: Before mariage I did bought one property which she want now 50% of

Hello. Thank you for the question. It is my pleasure to assist your with this today.
I have been in the legal profession, in high street practice, for 30 years so I have wide range of experience in a great many different aspects of law.
Please bear with me and I will be online and off-line from time to time and therefore, may be delayed getting back to you. You will receive an email when I reply.

For background - how long have you been together and married in total?

how old is your daughter and who will be main carer?

in who's name is ***** ***** who pays?

Customer: replied 14 days ago.
We been married since May 2016 so 6 years, but we met in September 2013. Daughter will be 5 years old next month but I want at least 50% of care and if I have to, I will do everything around my work to do that. Its not easy to answer who will be main carer, my wife know I could be but I am sure she wated as well.
Mortgage is in our both names but every month its coming out from my personal account.
Since we get married and bought it house I was main person who paid the all bills, my wife was paying towards our bills only £243 per month plus broadband. Of corse all work around house and refurbishment I paid when we moved in.

From 6 April 2022, in the UK we now have “no fault” divorce where there is no need to apportion blame.

Provided that at least one of the people wishing to get divorced lives in England, then getting divorced in England (& Wales) is infinitely a do-it-yourself job. (I am not familiar with the system in Scotland)

Save yourself a whole load of money: the government website have a do-it-yourself guide

https://www.gov.uk/divorce

Although you can agree finances between you, it doesn’t draw a line under it unless you have a financial order

https://www.gov.uk/money-property-when-relationship-ends

And if have children under 18, and you cannot agree who they live with and who sees who and when, then you need a child arrangement order (which includes Specific Issue Orders:

To confirm that something can happen

and a Prohibited Steps Orders

To stop something happening

https://www.gov.uk/looking-after-children-divorce

It doesn’t matter who divorces who or why, the financial issues are exactly the same. The court has not apportioned blame with regard to the division of marital finances for many years.

The only grounds for getting divorced used to be (all now changed of course)

1 Living apart from 2 years if they both agree.

2 living apart the 5 years regardless of consent.

3 Desertion

4 Adultery.

5 Unreasonable behaviour.

Please note that a legal separation is not the first step or precursor to a divorce. It is virtually the same process but it doesn't dissolve the marriage. However it draws a line under the relationship formally. The difference between a legal separation and divorce is basically that you cannot get remarried again. The reason you would have a legal separation, rather than a divorce is you can get divorced, for religious reasons for example.

From 6 April, the divorce petition form D8 has changed and here it is:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1064336/D8_0422_save.pdf

It is the same form to dissolve a civil partnership.

You need to bear in mind that this process is brand-new for the time being and were not certain how it’s going to work.

The majority of the form is just filling in personal details and as they are the details that you would have to give to a solicitor, to be frank, you may as well complete the form yourself and save a whole load of money.

There is nothing difficult in the form and although it’s 20 pages, it is not crammed with questions. You can complete it in about 15 minutes.

At present to the court fee is GBP595.

The full list of court fees are here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/fees-in-the-civil-and-family-courts-main-fees-ex50

there is very little legal aid available now except in very few categories but if you are on benefits or low-income, you may get help with or not have to pay the fees. Details are here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apply-for-help-with-court-and-tribunal-fees

And the fee remission is referred to on page 19 of the form.

Be careful with the addresses. If you are not having fee remission goes to the Bury St Edmunds address along with the cheque, on the back page of the form.

If you are applying for fee remission goes to the Harlow address.

At least, that’s how I interpret page 20. It remains to be seen because that page is extremely vague

An application for a financial order goes to your local court.

What will happen with regard to the division of marital finances is that everything will be lumped in together including pensions. With regard to pensions you will need a Cash Equivalent Transfer Value (CETV) which converts the pension to a lump sum for the mathematical calculation. You cannot get hold of that money but it converts it to a theoretical cash equivalent.

All the value of the assets are then lumped together and there is a division which starts off at 50-50 and it would then be adjusted in favour of one spouse or the other spouse depending on the needs of the parties, how long they have been married, where the money came from, et cetera et cetera.

Not just the length of the marriage would be taken into account but also any length of time together before marriage because it would be unfair if the couple were together for 29 years and only married for one year before splitting up (not uncommon) to be treated in the same way as a couple who had a whirlwind romance got married, were married for 12 months, and then split up. So the whole length of the relationship would be taken into account.

It’s largely a mathematical thing but does look at needs after divorce.

Even if everything is being divided down the middle, it’s not really a case of dividing it down the middle, all the assets wouldn’t be split 50-50 but, for example one person may keep the house and the other for example could have the savings and the pensions.

Thank you for letting me assist you with your legal question. I am glad that I was able to help.

I am not certain whether that answers the question for you or not, but I am happy to answer any specific points arising from this.

It will be my pleasure to help you again either further with this or any future questions you have

Kind regards

Stuart

Can I help you any further with this?

It's my pleasure to help. I’m glad that I was able to help so far.

Thank you for trusting Just Answer with your legal problem.

I'm happy to clarify anything which is outstanding.

Please don't hesitate to ask.

Kind regards

Stuart

Hello again. If you don’t have any further questions, I will mark this question thread as complete but don’t worry, the thread stays open if anything else crops up over the course of the next days weeks or months. I’m glad that I was able to help. Thank you for trusting Just Answer with your legal problem. Kind regards Stuart

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Hi Stuart
Sorry for late reply. Your answer is very helpful to me. So that's mean I can do divorce on my own without paying any extra fees to negotiator /solicitor? I have already paid £650 and she never told me I could do this on my own during free consultation.
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
in situation where my wife is self employed and she never put any money in her pension and of course she not keeping all cash in the bank, she never bother to invest in anything as well compare to me who have no savings because I have been working for corporations and always tried to invest money somehow, and I have some money paid in private pension, so that's mean I will loose not the 50% of my investments but all money I have put in to refurbishment of properris will be lost becouse selling them overall will not give me any profit compare how much I have invest my own money without any financial support from my wife
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Is any way so divorce law is actually fair? I get it, law is law but in my case there is no fairness what's so ever and my wife now about it. Especially I was thinking about our retirement when I was investing and of course future of our daughter.
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Kind Regards

You can indeed get divorced by just doing it. DiY and so the load of money apart from of course the court fee.

The court fee is GBP595.

If you had a free consultation and you paid GBP650 on account just say that you not proceeding and can you have your money back?

The situation would be even worse if you were not married because without a deed of trust, she does nothing, and you do everything, it still split 50-50.

Divorce law is inherently unfair. Usually unfair to both parties to be frank.

Some people struggle with money after divorce, with only the one income coming in.

I’m afraid the situation is that if she frittered all her money away and you were frugal, it’s going to be unfavourable to you unfavourable to her BUT the judge will take into account the fact that she’s lived the high life and you have been a saver and that would affect the eventual split but not to the effect that she gets nothing even though, in reality, that’s probably what she deserves based upon what you’ve told me.

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
I don't want her to get nothing, if she play fair she will still get house which we live in at the moment, and that house is worth a lot more than few years a go and probably will be worth a lot more in next few years but there is problem with her credit score, she may not get mortgage to pay off rest of the mortgage, that's why probably she wants to keep the house and 50% of everything else.
True is that I wanted divorce due to my wife unreasonable behavior but if I will stay in this relationship until my daughter is 18 and then sign over everything I got to her, is that help me to not losing everything what's I have been working for so far? Can that be solution? It is not the best solution for me but my daughter is most important person to me so I can sacrifice next few years for her, did You had case where somebody went similar path?

If you are still working towards putting “assets” together then the sooner you are divorce the better because the longer it goes on the more you are working for somebody else. It depends whether you feel that you want to stay together for your daughter or split up.

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
There is few more problems with my wife finances, like loans for almost £30k which I find out about by accident while we been renewing mortgage last year, then I knew how she lied to me but seems like nothing matter and in that case I don't have too many choices and law is not on my side. Thank You for Your help Stuart, You clear my mind and I know a lot more now and why a lot of people staying in toxic relation ships for many years. Thank You Kind Regards

All of that needs to be taken into account and whether they would be in your favour or her favour or joint would depend on what it was taken out for and whether it was taken out for marital things or whether for example she had spent it on clothes or you had spent it on motorbikes or whether it was spent jointly on holidays or house improvements et cetera

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
I don't know why she took it that loans for, two of them, she never told me, I never use that money, it maybe related to her bussines (she is solo trader, hairdresser) but that seems a lot of money for that, especially that shes got that business for 11 years, that's why I have start seriously thinking about divorce, because she was lied to me and that wasn't first or the last time

So the point you would make is that she only took the loan for selfish reasons because you’ve never seen any benefit of it.

My ex-partner was a sole trader hairdresser and she was taking about GBP50,000 per annum from a relatively small shop. It wasn’t in the middle of town, and it was cheap rent but she had a good following but that was the kind of money that she was getting in her shop had been open for 11 years.

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
You see, my wife was showing in her tax return about £12k-£18k but for me that was small amount and unreal becouse her shop is not in town centre and she's busy, she working 6 days a week majority of time

And I couldn’t agree more..

You can always ask for her bank statements although if she’s taking cash, she may not be putting it in the bank. She may be stashing it in a tin box under the bed.

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
My last question: is it possible to sign contract during marriage, ie. from this point onwards, everything what's I pay for and I got proof of it will not belong to my wife in case of future divorce?

It is provided she agrees to it. It’s a post nuptial agreement

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
Do we have to go together to solicitor or there is some kind of form to fill in?

There is no standard form, you have to draft your own although I have a precedent that I could let you have for a nominal extra fee. I will submit a premium services proposal for you. Then, as one person is potentially being disadvantaged, (your wife) then if you draft the agreement on your terms, she has to take independent legal advice on it.

If a person who is potentially being disadvantaged does not have solicitors, it is not sufficient for a person to be told to take legal advice but then declined, it is essential that they do actually take that advice. The solicitor must provide a certificate (a letter) confirming that he provided the advice). The certificate doesn’t say what the advice is, the advice is confidential but the certificate just confirms that the advice was given.

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
How much is extra fee, I would like to see something which professional prepered

There is probably 2 or 3 hours work in going through a prenuptial or a postnuptial agreement and making all the necessary changes to a precedent. I charge my time at GBP125 per hour but obviously high street solicitors are much dearer. That’s why solicitors charge in the region of GBP800 or even more for them plus the legal advice on the effect of the agreement.

That is obviously beyond the scope of this website but what I can do is let you have a template which is your starter. I have submitted a premium services proposal for you.

Stuart J and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 12 days ago.
Hi Stuart When I can expect template for postnuptial agreement? Do You need more information from me?

Don’t need any more information

apart from your email address.

I have been off-line all day.

Kind regards

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Hi Stuart
At the moment I have said to my layer, that I don't want divorce, I have already paid her £630 and we did not send any papers do court, she said that she can't refund me any amount and now she is ringing me representing my wife, is this conflict of interest or not?
Kind Regards
Mariusz

There is a conflict of interest, then the more you must drop both parties, they cannot pick and choose.

I think there is a conflict of interest if you’ve already paid someone 630 sales now they decided that they want to represent you instead.

Tell them that if they carry on, you will refer the matter to the Legal Ombudsman.

You need to make complaints of the firm’s Complaints Partner. If you speak to the firm, they would normally tell you that is although it should be in the Client Care/Terms of Business letter you got at the outset.

If the firm cannot resolve your complaint

The Legal Ombudsman could help you if you are unhappy about:

the work your solicitor did for you

your bill.

Here is a link to the Legal Ombudsman

https://www.legalombudsman.org.uk/information-centre/consumer-resources/bringing-a-complaint-to-us/

If you are concerned about your solicitor's behaviour you can also complaint of the Solicitors Regulation Authority but they will only deal with particular aspects. My personal view is that I would always complain to both.

The SRA can help you, or take action, when solicitors:

tell lies

steal from you

shut down without telling you

break SRA rules.