H refused to pay for my expenses, is this legal?

(20 Posts)
Yinlondon Sat 02-Mar-13 09:48:19

New development in our cold war this morning, H refused to give me his card to do the supermarket shopping.

I have no income at the moment. I used to be employed by his company for tax efficiency and getting 900 a month, which had stopped last Sept when I found a temp job. The temp job finished in Jan but he didn't put me back on salary again. However, he kept on paying for childminder/weekly supermarket shopping/cleaner/bills up to now. We are on the edge of splitting up but no one has made the first step yet.

Now I feel a bit scared to think how I'd struggle before a divorce is finalised if he wouldn't pay for my living expenses. I do want know if this is legal in this country when we are obviously still in a marriage.

P.S. We don't have joint account and he never let me know his income/financial situation within our marriage. I have no access to his money.

Homebird8 Sat 02-Mar-13 22:27:00

Your expenses? Does he not eat? Obviously he doesn't shop. hmm

Yinlondon Sun 03-Mar-13 11:43:16

Homebird, he does shop, but only for himself, and he doesn't eat at home very often at all...

MOSagain Sun 03-Mar-13 13:36:03

Assuming you are in England which I'm guessing from your name, you need to get on and issue divorce proceedings and also issue an application for Maintenance Pending Suit (interim maintenance) If he has effectively 'turned off the tap' then you have no other option.

Hopefully, if you instruct a lawyer they will write to him/any solicitor he may instruct and request that he start paying the maintenance on a voluntary basis, if not you will need to apply to the Court.

ladymuckbeth Sun 03-Mar-13 18:19:32

Is it possible to issue Maintenance Pending Suit if the husband you're divorcing supposedly has no job and yet seems to have money coming from somewhere, MOS?

YinLondon - I'm in a very similar situation to you, although perhaps a few months down the line. We separated in early January. One difference is that he hasn't worked since last July, but was a high earner before that. Prior to December, his limited company was paying me a few hundred pounds a month - that all stopped as soon as we separated. In fact, now that we've separated, he's paying me (and our two children) just FIVE POUNDS per week maintenance. As soon as we separated I started applying for benefits and now receive something like £105 in Child Tax Credits plus my Child Benefit each week. Am also waiting to hear re. income support - which will be crucial if I want to qualify for legal aid. Time is running out for that...

We also didn't have a joint account and as soon as we separated he cut off my access to any joint credit cards. It's been grim. But we are getting there, and if you have no other income (as in my case - apart from a small rental income I get from a flat I own) then you will be entitled to benefits to keep you going.

Homebird8 Sun 03-Mar-13 22:15:05

Oh YinLondon my heart goes out to you. I know everyone else has given really good advice and I have nothing but my horror for this man. thanks

Yinlondon Mon 04-Mar-13 01:29:23

MOS, thanks for the advice. I'm seeing lawyer Tuesday and thinking of reporting to the police, this is surely one type of domestic violence, isn't it?

ladyMuckbeth Your story sound horrible as well, what's wrong with those men? I hope my H will be more reasonable than he is now, at least for the child's sake.... I do need to start looking into the benefit matter, it has been such an alien thing to me until now...

Homebird Thank you so much for your support. You know, it is priceless to have such warmth from strangers, or shall I say, my fellow sisters, during the tough time......

Homebird8 Mon 04-Mar-13 03:53:06

I'm so glad you've got an appointment with the solicitor and that it's so soon. I hope your situation becomes clearer and that in the meantime your H at least realises his child needs food! angry

I don't know from my own experience but I'm sure that people on here would think the police would be interested. This sort of financial abuse is definitely DV. Give them a call. Talk to Women's Aid too Contact Page. The more advice the better and they may be able to help you with practicalities of everyday life too.

Sending you a warm brew and a friendly ear.

MOSagain Mon 04-Mar-13 08:21:44

I'm sorry but in the OP's case, I really don't see where there is DV. Bullying and intimidation perhaps, but not DV. In my experience (as a former police officer and family lawyer) sadly I don't think the police will be interested.

ladymuckbeth, if you have real reasons to believe he has got a source of income and is lying to defeat any CSA claims then you should consider an application. If he is allegedly not working, how is he supporting himself? Men who try to avoid paying maintenance often trip themselves up, they usually leave papertrails.

Yinlondon Mon 04-Mar-13 09:25:58

MOS Thanks for your suggestion. Could you please tell me up to which point the police will be interested? Only physical abuse? Your advice to ladymuckbeth is also one of my concern as well. One of my husband's close friend successfully hid his income on tax book to avoid paying his ex wife. I'm afraid my H would be doing the same thing. It's much easier if H was working for a big company and getting paid a fixed amount each month!

Yinlondon Mon 04-Mar-13 09:27:10

Homebird Thank you sooooo much for your warm support! Luckily the child eats at childminders so at least I don't have to worry about that. H is a very hands on good dad after all... I will definitely come back here to update what the lawyer says after tmr's appointment!

MOSagain Mon 04-Mar-13 12:55:36

Yinlondon it really will vary depending on who you talk to (sadly some police officers will be more helpful than others as with any profession). However, in my opinion, and it is only my opinion, threatening to stop paying maintenance/housekeeping does not fall under DV. Obviously DV is not limited to just physical abuse, threats can also fall into this category but not, I believe, threats to stop paying money. There are civil remedies (family courts) that deal with that, not the Police who can only deal with criminal matters.

kinkyfuckery Mon 04-Mar-13 13:00:22

You need to leave, or get him to leave, then there is money available to you and your child.
Why stay in a marriage like that?

Yinlondon Mon 04-Mar-13 17:34:14

MOS Thanks, it does make sense, I mean police dealing with criminal matters while mine is purely civil issue. I am also wondering, he has been physically (twice) and verbally (constantly) abusing me through out our marriage, is it too late to report anything to the police now? Will the police start questioning him straight away? Is there any possibility to just leave a note of the case with the police without making H aware of the situation? Thanks...

Yinlondon Mon 04-Mar-13 17:35:21

kinkyfuckery Good point, and that's what I'm trying to do. Though the financial side does scare me as I have no family to rely on here. If I had somewhere to go back to, even for a couple of month, I would have left long ago.

MOSagain Tue 05-Mar-13 09:06:35

How long ago was it he assaulted you? If not recent (ie months/years) then it is in my opinion unlikely that the police will take any action as they will probably say you should have reported them at the time, or as soon as practicable afterwards. You should keep a record of any incidents and if you want to take action, report as soon as possible. The police do sometimes make a note on their records but you need to be aware that if they consider the allegations serious enough they could proceed with criminal charges even if you then decide to withdraw your allegations.

ladymuckbeth Tue 05-Mar-13 09:24:20

YinLondon - I think the best thing you can do for now is to get started on considering yourself separated and applying for benefits so you at least have SOME money coming in. It didn't take long and was surprisingly easy.

MOS (I previously posted under a different name; we've PMd about filing for divorce... smile ) - I don't think he has any income although may be using savings to support himself now, which I don't know about. Last I knew he hadn't applied for benefits yet despite pleading poverty to me.

MOSagain Tue 05-Mar-13 13:20:57

ladymuckbeth wink grin
Here is a trick to help you work out if your husband is lying about money (or anything in fact). If his lips move, he is lying!

Seriously though, such a very difficult situation. If and when the matter goes to court (eg if applying for MPS - urgent maintenance) or months down the line when dealing with the ancillary relief (finances), he WILL HAVE TO PROVIDE DISCLOSURE. I don't mean to shout but honestly, sometimes these husbands (and perhaps sometimes wives) make me laugh, they seriously think they can avoid providing financial documentation and think the solicitors and judges will take their word for it! There will invariably be a paper trail so they can't hide assets, or indeed income forever.

Yinlondon Tue 05-Mar-13 16:40:25

MOS Thanks for your advice. It was back in 2011, so I will keep a note of reporting to police straight away in such cases in the future.

ladymuckbeth Can I do so when I'm still married? Won't they take the family income into account as well?

ladymuckbeth Tue 05-Mar-13 21:54:30

I can only go from my own experience, which was that I phoned them up and told them we were separated but living under the same roof. At the time he was giving me £100 a week (but not for much longer as it turned out) but they accepted it really easily and about 2 weeks later I was given Child Tax Credits of the amount stated before and backdated by 6 weeks. It was a godsend.

MOS - grin - I can't wait until we go to court. I'd like to say 'if' but sadly I just can't see us avoiding it, even at this early stage. My husband is appearing to be as mad as a box of frogs hmm and doing all sorts of bad things which I've been told repeatedly by those in the legal profession are viewed very dimly by judges. His current "wheeze" is refusing to see the children because I won't bow down to his requirement which is that we start 50/50 childcare with immediate effect, alternating days that we are responsible for the children, and both of us immediately going out to find work on an equal basis. Frankly the last time he was in charge of the kids I came home at 5pm to find them still in pyjamas, being given jam on toast for dinner "because they'd asked for it", with a potty full of wee on the kitchen floor and one of them running around soaked in urine having not been changed. sad Last week he stayed in the house just one night and saw the children for about 3 hours total, but refuses to ever say when he is coming back so we can never make any plans, and won't ask to take them out of the house or have them on any set day or time. The man is an utter joke of a father and it's tearing me apart not being able to tell the DC what the fuck is going on. Y - sorry for derailing your thread.

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