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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12088
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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my daughter married 12 years ago, at the time of marriage her

Customer Question

my daughter married 12 years ago, at the time of marriage her husband owned a property in Glasgow west end.
He had an outstanding mortgage of £30.000 on the property.
my ex husband gave my daughter £30,000 as part of her inheritance.
to allow my son in law to pay off his mortgage.
To allow them to get a joint mortgage to buy their family home;.
they were about to set up.
my daughter and husband split up in July 2011
Husband is in family home.
daughter is social housing with children.
my daughter has a lawyer who has communicated with son in law lawyer.
she has been advised she has no redress over the property, son in law has had before marriage.
regardless of her father paying off his mortgage. can you please advise.
as I feel we may have to change lawyers
can you advise.
as apparently this is under Scottish law
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Scots Law
Expert:  JGM replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
The lawyer is correct but perhaps hasn't considered other arguments.
A property acquired before marriage is not matrimonial property. No claim can be made in respect of that property in the absence of a pre nuptial agreement which would have been one correct way of dealing with this at the time. Alternatively your daughter should have sought a security over the property to protect her contribution to it.
However, she may be able to claim "special circumstances" in respect of the division of the actual matrimonial property being the matrimonial home and any other money or property acquired during the marriage.
The usual rule is that such property falls to be divided equally between the parties.
However, she could argue that she contributed the £30000 to enable the acquisition of the matrimonial property even thought the actual cash was applied to a non matrimonial asset. In other words in the special circumstances of this case, the normal rule of equal division should be disregarded and she should be given credit for the £30000 contribution in contemplation of the future relationship.
Had it not been for the outstanding mortgage over the non matrimonial asset, the likelihood is that the £30000 would have been applied to the matrimonial home and hence the special circumstances argument.
I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Expert:  JGM replied 3 years ago.
Can I assist you further with this?