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Harris, Law Specialist
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2851
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
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My son's wife of 1 year is divorcing him .He works at sea for

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My son's wife of 1 year is divorcing him .He works at sea for long periods. She has made herself unemployed and is demanding £750 a month .She has all the documents and he can't get any of his personal belongings.She has lived of his pay throughout their time together banking savings into bonds in her name. He was very generous.He bought an old boat and refurbished it which he is now living on when he is home and she is demanding it. Her name is ***** ***** family home where she lives with her father. She is destroying his credit rating and basically trying to ruin him. He needs help and I need to know what to do to help him as he is working abroad of shore . Thankyou
Hi, thanks for your question. I am a qualified family law solicitor.
I am sorry to hear about your son's situation. Can you confirm if they have children together and how long they were together before the marriage?
Why can he not gain access to the items he put in storage?
Also, when is he due to return to the UK?
As this matter appears to have just commenced, it may be in his interest to inform all the relevant organisations (such as banks etc) not to send documents to the former marital home.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
No children together about 3/4 years , he believes she has sole access to storage she orgaized it and demanded he pay it. He's worried about insurance payments for boat as he does know who it is with as she orgaized everything while he works away. He's been kept in the dark because he trusted her.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
He wasn't allowed friends and she convinced him to go very up everything including his family . My son has a son who he pays maintainance for and has to visit whenever he is home .He is a good father. She is trying to ruin him.Her solicitor is a family member who is deeply involved.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Due back in England 23rd December for 2 weeks
Thanks for elaborating. I think that as this has just happened he should wait until he is back in the UK. When he returns he should suggest to her that they attend mediation in order to settle this amicably. He can find local mediators here:
As he has a child that child's needs would be the priority and he needs to ensure that he can continue to meet his maintenance payments. Given that the marriage is only one year and the wife had been earning a decent salary she will need to explain why she stopped working and what her earning capacity would be. He will not be expected to make continuous maintenance payments, and at the very most this would be minimal given the short marriage and her likelihood of earning a living herself.
In relation to the boat, it can be considered the marital home, but his contributions will be taken into account when deciding how it is to be divided.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My son cannot access the storage of his household and personal possessions. He tried to pay the costs but they have been instructed not to let him. His wife is not paying either . How can I help him sort this ?
Given that she has instructed solicitors, I would suggest that he speaks to them to request access to the storage space to collect his belongings. He will need to stress to them that she has sole access to it and is refusing him access and refusing anyone pay for their fees, which could lead to the storage company having to sell the belongings to cover outstanding fees.
Who signed the storage contract? If he had paid their fees initially I would imagine that it would have been your son.
If anything were to happen to his belongings due to her unreasonable behaviour then he will have a right to claim to be compensated as part of any financial relief proceedings for whatever belongings have been lost.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She offered to arrange it as my son and I had gone over to see herto try and talk to her and again it was just before he was due fo go back to work. Then she demanded £ 500 for the fees and now won't let him pay anything . He was looking after some of my furniture and possessions.
Thanks - again he should speak to her solicitors and explain the situation and request access to the storage unit to collect his belongings.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for help so far. My son has now received many letters for signing from her solicitor demanding maintenance and it be dealt with before xmas. They claim she is destitute. Should he reiterate he is working abroad and cannot deal with it until he returns to England? She has given up a good job and had saved my son's pay in premium bonds in her name . Our concern is the boat .Can they or can the court sieze it for any reason. My son is the owner and lives on it when he is home and he is paying moorings as he always has and paying insurance . Her name was on the family home but we think the solicitor (a family member) has had it removed and she has cashed in the £4000 or more bonds and has hidden it. Should he reply. He is not signing anything as some of their claims are fictitious. I am just worried about the boat and this urgency to get more money from him.
The boat cannot be "seized" but will be taken into consideration when settling the assets and finances. If she thinks that he is about to sell it, to avoid her obtaining a share of it then she can apply to Court to freeze the asset and prevent a sale. As long as the title for the boat is registered solely in his name, she cannot do anything to it.
He should reply to her solicitors and explain that he is not in the UK and cannot agree to maintenance until fully considering her position. She needs to disclose how she is destitute and your son can request bank statements and confirmation of assets that he is aware of. She will also need to evidence what her needs are as well as her job prospects and why she is no longer in work.
Your son should not provide her any maintenance until he is satisfied that she is in fact destitute and a formal agreement is in place. Given that he believes that she is hiding assets, he has to request for there to be full and frank financial disclosure (he will also have to do the same).
I would suggest that upon his return, your son should make an urgent referral to an independent mediator to assist them in reaching an agreement. The mediator will assist with disclosure of finances and documents and preparation of an agreement which they can take to solicitors to prepare into a court order, to later submit for approval once the Decree Nisi is granted in the divorce proceedings. You can find local mediators here: