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Marriage breakup - involves kids, mortgage and debts.

(10 Posts)
kid Sun 10-Feb-13 21:18:40

I'm posting this on behalf of someone else and would really appreciate any advice anyone might have.

A husband walked out on his wife leaving behind 2 dc. They have a joint mortgage which they started less than 2 years ago plus lots of debts.

My questions are:
1. Who is responsible for paying the mortgage? Can husband insist on wife paying half of it even if she isn't living there?

2. What are husbands rights about seeing dc? He wants them every weekend but so far, nothing has been agreed.

3. Who is responsible for the debts. (Its mainly credit card debts in wifes name, but the purchases can be proven to be for husband)

4. If they chose to sell their property, can husband make all of the arrangements without any input from wife?

Tia

titchy Sun 10-Feb-13 22:11:53

Not a lawyer but yes they are both jointly and severally liable for mortgage debt, credit card if she has signed the agreement would probably be hers unless it was his account but in her name. Kids - legally they both have the same rights and responsibilities she should offer reasonable access and mediation if they can't agree.

titchy Sun 10-Feb-13 22:12:52

No she needs to sign to sell house assuming in her name as well as his. He could get court order though maybe?

Gursky Sun 10-Feb-13 22:20:12

have a look on the citizens advice website WWW.advice guide.org.uk - there's a section ending a relationship that deals with all these questions.

In general each party will be responsible for the debts in their names. If the mortgage is in both names they are jointly and severally liable meaning that they are both responsible for the whole of the mortgage, not 50/50 shares. The lender doesn't care who pays as long as the payments are made, but if payments stop they can pursue either party for their money.

Hope this helps.

Gursky Sun 10-Feb-13 22:23:28

And if the house is in joint names then both parties have to agree to the sale. Of course if the house is repossessed (if mortgage wasn't paid) then the mortgage lender takes it back and they sell it. The lender would need a court order for possession though - this is not something that happens overnight.

kid Sun 10-Feb-13 22:50:20

Thanks.
As they are not on speaking terms, its a bit difficult to resolve. Credit card debts are in wife's name as husbands credit rating was too bad for credit (hmm, I wonder why!). So basically, is it right that she'll be responsible for clearing those debts herself?

I think they have a fixed rate on the mortgage, does that make it tricky to sell during that period?

Sorry for all the questions. We have had a look online but its not always straight forward to find the answers we were looking for.

RedHelenB Mon 11-Feb-13 07:26:54

What equity is there in the house? Is the husband able to pay the mortgage without his wife's half? Is the wife worried about getting a bad credit rating?

kid Wed 13-Feb-13 16:14:21

they paid 10% deposit and have been paying the mortgage for a little over 1 year.
Neither are able to pay the mortgage on their own and its a joint mortgage so I think they are jointly liable for paying it.

I don't know if wife is worried about credit rating, I don't think she ever thought she'd get in this much debt, but then again, she did have a helping hand with all husbands purchases. Husband has some more debts in his own name too which is probably why he couldn't get any more credit.

If there is a fixed rate for a period of time, are they able to sell the house before that time is up? I thought if you did, you'd be charged a penalty which isn't cheap, but they both believe they can sell at any time.

RedHelenB Wed 13-Feb-13 16:17:33

A joint mortgage equals joint responsibility so best bet is to get house valued, see if it will clear debts when sold & start over again, There may well be a redemption figure to pay if they are on a fixed rate.

Xenia Thu 14-Feb-13 10:36:15

1. Who is responsible for paying the mortgage? Both
Can husband insist on wife paying half of it even if she isn't living there? No, but if she does not pay house may be repossessed so not a good solution. If she earns more than he does he may have a right to payments from her - maintenance . Sounds like they cannot afford to keep on the mortgage so will have to sell.

2. What are husbands rights about seeing dc? He wants them every weekend but so far, nothing has been agreed.
He should try to negotiate to see them. Some fathers have children all the time or every other week which helps the mother to go to full time work and savs her costs on nurseries and nannies so she may jump at the chance of very real hours of childcare.
He needs to speak to her urgently about it and may have to say he will apply to court if she will not give contact. How old are the children and do they want contact?

3. Who is responsible for the debts. (Its mainly credit card debts in wifes name, but the purchases can be proven to be for husband)
Legally the person whose name is on them BUT when they agree the divorce finances all debts of both and all assets of both are calculated and then split so in that sense it does not matter whose name they are in.

4. If they chose to sell their property, can husband make all of the arrangements without any input from wife?
This is often set out in a court order on divorce finances eg who shows prospective buyers rouind, which agents are used, what price advertised at, obligation to keep house nice before a viewing etc. Worth getting it in the divorce finances consent order if they cannot reach agrement otherwise one or other could scupper the sale by misconduct. Even if not much profit likely to be made much better they sell than on a repossession sale much under value or at auction.

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