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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12959
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I separated from my husband in July. He was having an

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Hello .. I separated from my husband in July. He was having an emotional relationship which he put down to my issues with money. The relationship continued so I left the family home on nov 18. We have a daughter 19 who lives At the home with he dad and I rent a flat. Husband pays the mortgage and bill for home And I pay my rent etc. The situation is now intolerable as he is having a relationship and admitted to me it was a sexual one. I am desparate to file for divorce but am broke so I haven’t got 550 for the Application and I am unable to get credit or no longer have parents. Is their any help available to me with this. I’m 52 and work full time .. I earn approx 22k
Assistant: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?
Customer: No because I understand to start the ball rolling I need 559 to pay up front
Assistant: Have you talked to a lawyer about this yet?
Customer: No but I’m at the end of my tether
Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No

Good afternoon. I will assist with your question but need more info - also be aware this is an email not chat service and therefore maybe delayed in replying.

before i answer fully for background -

how long were you together and married in total?

why did you leave marital home and not him?

who's name(s) are on mortgage?

what is your preferred outcome please

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Thank you
Together 21 years married 13 years in June 18
Because he wouldn’t leave .. he left for 3 days but my daughter missed him and wanted him to come back. That was in sept 18 so the relationship he was having was intolerable for me
Joint mortgage. Outcome is for me to be able to start divorce proceedings

I will come to the court fees and any assistance in that respect shortly.

Provided that at least one of the people wishing to get divorced lives in England, then getting divorced in England (& Wales) is infinitely a do-it-yourself job. (I am not familiar with the system in Scotland)

Save yourself a whole load of money: the government website have a do-it-yourself guide

Although you can agree finances between you, it doesn’t draw a line under it unless you have a financial order

And if have children under 18, and you cannot agree who they live with and who sees who and when, then you need a child arrangement order (which includes Specific Issue Orders:

To confirm that something can happen

and a Prohibited Steps Orders

To stop something happening

In the United Kingdom, we do not have “irreconcilable differences”. That is a thing in the United States for the time being at least. The rules are changing here shortly to get rid of the following 5 grounds of divorce and to get rid of the fault issue but that has yet to be enacted. To be honest, in my opinion, it’s going to make very little difference because the big arguments are over finance and children not the actual divorce itself.

It doesn’t matter who divorce is who or why, the financial issues are exactly the same. The court has not apportioned blame with regard to the division of marital finances for many years.

Grounds for getting divorced are:

1 The couple have lived part 2 years or more but less than 5 years and they both consent to the divorce.

2 The couple have lived apart for 5 years or more, regardless of whether they both consent or not.

3 Desertion. Not common.

4 Adultery. Very difficult to prove unless there is unequivocal evidence or an admission.

5 Unreasonable behaviour. Most common and relatively easily to put together a petition on these grounds. For example:

A spouse wants an unreasonable amount of sex/never once it.
Lack of personal hygiene/obsessive personal hygiene.

Obsessively tidy/extremely messy and untidy.

Gambles to excess/it’s tightfisted with money.

Never interacts with spouse or children/obsessive with children.

Violent or bullying or intimidating.

Excess alcohol.

Lots of grounds.

You may get help with court fees if you don’t have much income. However with an income of GBP22,000, it’s unlikely you would get the remission but do look at the full booklet in the second link below. The full list of court fees are here:

there is very little legal aid available now except in very few categories but if you are on benefits or low-income, you may get help with or not have to pay the fees. Details are here:

Can I clarify anything else for you?

I am happy to answer any specific points arising from this.

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Thank you.

If you still need any points clarifying, I will still reply because the thread does not close.

Best wishes.


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