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james bruce
james bruce, Solicitor-Advocate
Category: Law
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Experience:  Owner at James Bruce Solicitors
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I'm looking for advice on what /how I can buy my ex-partner

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I'm looking for advice on what /how I can buy my ex-partner (we weren't married) off the house.I spoke with him last week to say what does he want to do and he agreed to call me. However I got a text from him during the week informing me he will no longer provide any financial support (£200) after July towards our sons, no mention of the house. I did respond by 'really' as he appears to have ignored the initial conversation, his response '?' , but nothing since then as I don't want the conversation to lead to arguments.We have been apart for 10 years, he has made contributions towards boys now aged 21 and 18 (initially £300, then £200 once eldest turned 18) only. He has not paid towards the mortgage /endowment / any maintenance etc within that time.Due to financial debts and being on part-time wages wasn't in a position to do anything with house so has just been managed financially, as when he left. Same mortgage in our names etc. The house has now been paid, however, this was based on property prices 25 years ago.The house needs work, new roof etc, so whilst aware need to try and pay him some money just concerned that he will try and go for 50% of current prices (? less what he has not contributed). I'm still restricted financially with debts, so selling wouldn't be an option, and need to be able to raise enough to put into the house too.During that time I have been main parent/provider for sons and certainly after the first couple of years of maybe staying over 1/2 nights, the boys have not really stayed with their dad.Eldest did move out for apprx. 15 months but now back home. Both plan to start university this September and youngest will stay at home, not sure about eldest. So will continue to support.I want to be able to provide security for myself and sons should anything happen. Whilst I appreciate that he wasn't able to/or hasn't asked me to sell/move during that time I have felt on edge, so now need to sort it out if possible.Ex got married approx 5-6 years ago and now have their own house, no children.I would be grateful for advice on what is best to do, not sure trying to speak to him is viable as he ignored original conversation.Look forward to hearing from you.
Kind regards
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: West Midlands, Wolverhampton
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I have spoke to a mortgage advisor to see if i can get a mortgage as currently on DMP. Potentially yes, but when we were talking we were looking at the house approx £100k. As had no idea.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: The house prices i have since checked, the last one 2016 was around 160k, though mine certainly needs a lot of work i.e new roof, windows etc. The house was paid off at 39k.

Hello, I will assist today.

If he is still on the title deeds then he is still owner with you of the property.

Is or was there any court order for maintanience for you or the children.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Still on deeds, no court order.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I understand he has an entitlement, but nothing formal agreed.

Your sons are passed school age, he is on the deeds, so legally he can claim half the property. If he chose to get difficult he could even apply to court for an order to sell.

If he is willing to sell to,you, then possibly mortgage the property and pay him off.

Another option, just see if he would transfer his part to you, as he has remarried and moved on.
Depending how the property is listed on the deeds, would depend what would happen to the property if either of you died.
Is the property owned as Joint tenants or joint tenants in common, Very important to know, as could have vast implication if something happens.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
On the deeds both our names are ***** ***** the mortgage was going on if anything happened to either of us it would transfer fully to other.
Obviously im looking to ensure that does not happen and want to pay him off or get him to transfer over without additional costs.
Is he entitled to 50% less what has not paid?
Or 50% regardless and hope that he would be amenable?

Legally, 50% of. Value. Not relevant what has bee spent. The law would say you benefited from that spend by living there. Unfair I know, but that is the law.

If he won’t sell, several possible option available.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
unfair, as the children have missed out financially.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He hasnt actually paid for the mortgage/endowment etc for 10 years how does that work?

Unfortunately it is unfair.

moving on, with the way the deeds are at the moment, if you were to die, he would get your share of property and your sons get nothing. However, if he were to die, you would get his share.

As he has remarried, and moved on, would he consider transferring his ownership to you? If not, then equally to his sons? Just a thought.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If he agrees to transfer deeds either to me or boys, is that it or could he come financially at a later date? Is there anything other legally we would need to do?
Ideally i just want him paid off then we can be secure.

I think you have covered all the options here.

If he transfers it then that ends his involvement in the property. He can’t come back for,it.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can he ask me to sell or come for his half at any time now the boys are 18+

Yes he can

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If nothing changed at this point, other than i had a will for my half to go to boys, would that be taken into account, or would it still go to the ex?

If property owned as Joint Tenants then ex would get the property under the law of survivorship. The gift in the will, would fail.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If we agree a figure to tsje name off deeds, do we need to draft anything formal or by taking name off deeds that will complete.

Removing name from title would do it, The forms are valid legal forms.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for you advice.

You are very welcome. Take care and good luck.

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