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ukfamilysolicitor, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1371
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor Currently specialising in Family. Also experienced in Corporate, Employment, Civil Litigation, Debt Recovery
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My wife and I bought a house 3 years ago with my daughter and

Customer Question

My wife and I bought a house 3 years ago with my daughter and her husband as 'joint tenants'. The son in law left the house 1 year ago and they are currently filing for divorce and filling out a form 'E'. We changed to tenants in common in the meantime. Problem is, my wife and I have put in c£300,000 whilst my daughter and ex husband jointly have put in c£15,000. My question is, can we change the default of 25% for my daughter to c2% to reflect the money put in ( my daughter is quite happy about that )? My reasoning is that, all other assets being equal, in theory, the ex son in law would owe my daughter 11.5% of the equity of the house. Again, I do not want the ex son in law to get 25% as he has put virtually nothing in.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 2 years ago.
Welcome to Just Answer
I am a Solicitor and will assist you.
Please may I ask:
- was there any trust deed or restrictions registered when the property was purchased?
- when we're the monies paid by you? At purchase?
- if your daughter and her husband have attempted mediation?
Kind Regards
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
No trust deed or restrictions when property was purchased. Majority of the money (c £260,000 ) paid by me at purchase, since then there have been mortgage repayments shared equally. My daughter and son in law are currently 'attempting' mediation but the house is the only real asset and, currently, he is saying that he does not want to take any of the money that I have put into the house but he is quite capable of changing his mind which is my worry.
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your response.
The difficulty that you have is that the court will look at the intention when the property was purchased and as Joint Tenants the legal presumption very much is that any equity in the property would be split equally.
You could try and argue that the money was a loan and not a gift but this isn't going to be easy either given that there was no trust deed or restrictions.
I am sorry to say that there is no way of restrospectively changing the position. I know that this isnt what you want to hear!
Mediation really does seem the best option here. If you can get together the money he is currently seeking to buy him out then this could be recorded in a consent order.
Once the court has approved the consent order then this does become legally binding and he wont be able to change his mind in the future.
If the legal adviser didnt make the position clear to you when the property was purchased - that being in respect of the effect of how the property was held - then you might want to give consideration to making a claim in respect of that advice.
Please do not hesitate to ask if I can assist further.
Kind Regards
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