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plclegal, Barrister
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 9105
Experience:  Barrister at law
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I have lived in my present home for 17 years 10 of which as

Customer Question

I have lived in my present home for 17 years 10 of which as married status. I have made a huge contribution financially during this time. Until recently we have been foster carers so there were no financial worries. This has now ceased and the only income we have is from my state pension and my teachers pension (iro £20,000 per month). There is no mortgage and the property is worth approx. £450,000 - £475,000. If our situation continues without resolution I would like to know what sort of settlement would be likely without it bein punitive. Can you help me.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Market Harborough in Leicestershire.
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: None - this is a fact finding exercise
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I don’t want to do anything at present but I need to gather as much info as possible to help with any possible discussions with my wife.
Submitted: 9 days ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  plclegal replied 9 days ago.

Hello and thank you for the question. I’ll do my best to assist you and provide an accurate and speedy response. Please bear with me as this is an email service and not live chat, replies will not be instant as a result. Also note that the discussions here are for general information purposes only and do not constitute a lawyer client relationship.

Let me just review your query and I’ll come back to you with any points I need clarifying in order to be able to answer.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Expert:  plclegal replied 9 days ago.

Can you tell me:

Is the house in joint names?

Is the teacher's pension £20k per year or per month (you have said above £20k per month)?

Can you tell me if your wife has her own income or pensions?

Do you have any children under 18 living in the home?

Expert:  plclegal replied 9 days ago.

Please note I am only available online this morning, I can see you are trying to arrange a call which the site offers - if you do book a call this will not be with me but another expert today. I will continue online, of course.

Expert:  plclegal replied 9 days ago.

Good morning - this is just a follow up to see if you can have a look at the questions I have asked so I can advise you? Thank you in advance.

Expert:  plclegal replied 9 days ago.

Hello. Without the information I asked for, I can only give you a general answer, but I hope this helps. You can always come back to me for clarification if needed.

The court follows a specific set of guidelines when deciding how to fairly divide matrimonial property. The starting point is always an equal share of all assets. Generally:

1. With property purchased prior to marriage or assets acquired prior to marriage, the starting point is that these are EXCLUDED from the joint asset pot.

2. With property or assets acquired after the date of marriage, the starting point as that this is INCLUDED in the joint asset pot.

3. It does not matter who contributed what during the marriage, all assets acquired after the date of marriage are considered to be jointly owned regardless of who paid what. This means one party will still own half of the asset purchased after the date of marriage even if the other party paid for it all.

4. Claims on pensions should be limited to a share of the amount accrued in the fund during the length of the marriage, with marriages that are relatively short, but with a longer marriage pensions are more often shared equally.

5. If you both work now, there should not be claim for maintenance. In the case where one spouse earns significantly more than the other maintenance would be an issue for the court to decide if you are not agreed.

6. The court can depart from the general principles if it is deemed fair to do so and the needs of the parties dictate that it is necessary to do so.

7. When deciding how assets should be split fairly, parties' ages, income needs, salary and future financial plans are all relevant. Where it's not possible for one party to remain in the house and keep up the mortgage payments alone, it's more likely that a sale will be agreed through the courts and the proceeds split in accordance with the above principles.

I hope this assists in setting out the legal framework for you?

Expert:  plclegal replied 9 days ago.

I didn't hear from you again, but I trust that the information provided was of assistance.

Thank you for your enquiry today. I am happy to answer follow-up questions - please do get in touch with requests for extra information or further queries and I will do my best to help you. You can request me personally on a new question thread saving my profile as one of your preferred experts and by tagging me (@PLCLEGAL) at the start of the new thread. Best wishes, Peter.

Have a great day!