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Senior Partner
Senior Partner, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 13329
Experience:  Solicitor with more than 30 years experience
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Please help, Can you advise, me and my wife are both happily

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Please help,

Can you advise, me and my wife are both happily married with 2 children.
I am then main earner at home, and the last 12 years I have been paying the mortgage and all main other bills etc,,
Approx 2 years ago my wife's farther wanted to hand down the family business which I strongly disagreed.
We never got any benefits from her Farthers business which got handed down to my wife /sister and brother.(((my wife's brother totally in charge of the business))
Unfortunately my wife's family business might go bankrupt? Where do I stand as I have been paying mortgage and other main bills is there a possibility that I could lose equity in my house.
Kind regards
Hi what form does the business take? Is it a company or a partnerhsip? Has your wife given any guarantees in connection with the business? What is her involvement with it?

Is your house in joint names?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

It is a partnership with her brother and sister,my wife had no day to day control/running of business but has signed paper work so she is a silent director....which I strongly dis-agreed with.

Sorry but how can she be a director if it is a partnership? Partnerships do not have directors. You cannot be a silent partner legally. You were right to disagree.

If this is an unincorporated partnership then she is personally liable to any third party for the whole of the liabilities of the partnership. She may have a right get a contribution back and between the partners the liabilities should be share according to the partnership deed.

You are in no way liable but if she is a joint owner of your home it may be at risk if there are partnership debts due that cannot be paid out of the assets.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi, okay i need to check what she is legally to the business but i know she has had demand letters like her brother and sister. If we transfer the mortgage and deeds of our home to my name solely will this prevent them claiming against our home. We do not have any other assets or savings?

Other thing do I have a case in that I can prove that I solely pay for mortgage etc,,,and do I have rights because I never wanted anything to do with family business.

Kind regards

I am afraid none of the actions you propose will really protect you . If you transfer the property now then the transfer can be set aside if she is not currently solvent i.e. able to pay any debts due. Furthermore because you are related the transfer can be set aside pretty much at any time afterwards.

The fact the you pay the mortgage does not mean she does not have an interest if the marriage has been fairly lengthy and you bought it together in joint names. You may be able to claim that your are beneficially entitled to more than half but that does not really help.

No you have no rights just because you did not like the transfer of the business.

you would be best to focus on the sorting out the arrangements affecting the business and make sure if your brother in law is running it that he bears the principle burden of paying the debts.

Did your wife get any legal advice when she took over the business? Was she advised properly about her liability?

What is the equity int eh house? Is it possible for you to buy your wife out to protect it?
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