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plclegal, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 7234
Experience:  Barrister at law
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I have just been served with divorce papers .. we separated

Customer Question

Hi I have just been served with divorce papers .. we separated in Feb 2019 he has sited a list of lies .. when in fact he had an affair and i have a whole heap of proof. He states we have had no physical relationship since this time, which is untrue and he has been verbally and physical violent towards myself .. which i also have proof of. It states on the divorce papers that he is not being represented and he wants a financial settlement with the only marital assets being the house which is a joint mortgage and his army pension .. he has also sold the family car without informing me. We have two teenagers one of 18 and one of 16. He pays the mortgage and 300 each month and i pay all the bills and have the children 100 percent of the time. We were married 17 urs and together 20 yrs. I was and am primary care provider as he was in the military. He now has a well paid job hence why he pays the mortgage as my job isnt well paid but i have always worked throughout our marriage. Please help with what i need to do next. Many thanks
JA: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?
Customer: No my plan was to divorce after my daughter turned 18
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer about this yet?
Customer: No .. as he stated he wouldnt divorce until daughter was 18
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I just want to know my rights and what to do next. I am on universal credit and can't really afford solicitors fees.
Submitted: 19 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

Hello, my name is***** for your patience.

I’ll do my best to assist you today and I’m sorry that you are going through this. I appreciate that is is important that you find a resolution as soon as possible.

Please note that our discussions on this site are for general information purposes and do not create an lawyer-client relationship. It is always recommended that you consult with a local solicitor for specific legal information. You may receive a phone call request which is from the site, not me, and you may choose to ignore this request.

Please be patient with me as I am generally assisting multiple customers at once and this is an email service, but will I will review your question and respond to you as soon as I can, as your question is very important to me. I hope that I can help you resolve your issue today.

Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

Can you set out some facts and figures for me?

  • how long have you been married?
  • do you own property and when was this purchased?
  • What is the property worth currently?
  • is there a mortgage, and how much is outstanding if so?
  • do either of you have savings/ pensions?
  • do you have children, and if so how old are they?
  • who is their main carer (if applicable)?
  • do you both work and if so do you earn similar amounts?
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
We married 2003, the property has a mortgage we paid a 45,0000 deposit on a 2085,000 house on the 11 December 2017 outstanding mortgage 2019,000. I believe the property to be worth 350,000 now. No savings but he has an army pension and receives 885.00 per month along with a 40,000 plus wage. I earn 17,845 per yr and also receive universal credit. I care for the children they are 16 and 18 and live with me in the family home
Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

Thank you for the information.

Whilst it's difficult to be specific, by way of general pointers:

1. The equity in the house is a joint asset, so there is approximately £130,000 there. As you earn less and are the primary carer you have a couple of possible options:

- ask that you and the children remain in the house until both children have finished full time education - and deal with the issue of sale at that point

- agree to a sale but ask for more than 50% of the equity as your mortgage capacity is lower and you have care of the children

2. The pension should be split 50/50 - this is arguably a stand alone issue

3. He earns more than you but is not classed as a high earner. He would have to pay child maintenance but spousal support in addition to this is unlikely to be ordered by the court

Hopefully this information will assist. Please do let me know if you have further questions.

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Do i have to respond to the divorce papers .. obviously i will give him the divorce but he has lied on them and i have proof
Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

It's up to you. In reality you do not stand to gain anything by contesting the divorce as the court won't base the decision on the devision of the assets on anything in the petition nor is it a matter of public record what the reason for divorce was cited as.

But, if you feel you cannot accept the petition, you can consider filing your own petition in response rather than defending the divorce.

It adds costs and time though, and the end result will be the same.

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
if i dont respond what happens next. Not that i want to bury my head in the sand ... but do i need to return the divorce papers
Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

I would not suggest burying your head in the sand. You need to decide whether to file your own petition, or accept his. Don't ignore it though, he will then start to have to serve you via a bailiff to prove service and you could face costs against you for this.

If you do have further questions, don't hesitate to come back to us here at JustAnswer.

Kind regards, Peter

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Thank you
Expert:  plclegal replied 19 days ago.

My pleasure. All the best.