How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 35045
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
Type Your Law Question Here...
Clare is online now

My ex husband and I went to mediation before our divorce, which

This answer was rated:

My ex husband and I went to mediation before our divorce, which was finalised in 2012. At that time I agreed to a "clean break" whereby I received the equity on the house and not to touch his pension. I have now received a Consent Order from my ex husband's solicitors to sign which gives details of income and expenditure as well as pensions. I had no idea at the time we separated just how much his pension was worth - mine is a pittance as I only took it out later in my working life, believing his would support us both in retirement. Do I have to agree and sign this form or can I contest it, bearing in mind I do not have the finances to employ a soilicitor. Could the CAB help me? Thank you. Julie Keen
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
Was there no financial disclosure as part of the Mediation process?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No figures were put in writing apart from I should retain the net proceeds of the former family home, which I did and used the net equity of £126,000, to buy another house with no mortgage.

The order does state that we agreed to this and that a no futher claims would be made by either party against capital and pensions. However, no figures were discussed at this stage and I had no idea how much money was involved. I just need to know if this is a legally -binding document.

The confusing answer is - it may be.
To make it less confusing - how long were you married, how long had your ex been paying into the pension and how much is the pension worth?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

We were married in 1985 and divorced in 2012, although separated since 2005. My ex is will be 59 in June and has been a teacher since, I believe he qualified, at the age of 21. His pension(s) is £405,267.97. Mine is £17,501.30 plus sate pension. I will be 56 this year.

We're there any other capital assets that he retained?
Did you have any children under 18 at the time of the divorce?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No more capital assets. Both the boys were over 18.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

The latest letter document from his solicitor now includes the £53,000 share he has inherited from his mother's house,but this was after the mediation sessions.


There are two issues here - can you reopen the matter - and should you.
Withe respect to the first part the fact that this was agreed in mediation makes it harder to argue that you were coerced into it - but the fact a that actual figures were not used and you did not have legal representation makes it more likely than not that a court would indeed agree that the agreement is not binding
With regard to the second apart of the equation your claim on his pension is equivalent to 50% of 26/38s of his pension.- very roughly a third.
However where you receive cash instead of a pension sharing order there has to be a considerable discounting with the cash equivalent being anywhere between a third and a half of the value.
Given the figures the actual settlement may not have been that unbalanced - something to assess before you actually take action.
I hope that this is of assisatnce - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you. I don't want to open a hornet's nest, but I am worried about my future - particularly as he is with someone else - another teacher - and I am on my own with a very low income.

Unfortunately his new relationship will not be relevant to the calculations I am afraid
Clare and 3 other Law Specialists are ready to help you