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HELP me stop my husband stealing more money from me

(19 Posts)
luvmy4kids Fri 16-Aug-13 09:10:58

Hello there. I was hoping there are some knowledgeable people reading this forum who could help.

My husband has abandoned us fact. My problem is that we have 1) a joint current account and I am the lead name and 2) a joint mortgage which is linked to a joint offsetting account which is set up like a current account.

For the past couple of years, my husband refused to allow me access to these accounts and I admit it's my fault that I did not push harder to see these accounts. Anyway, fast forward to now. My husband had refused me access to these accounts. I have now however managed to get myself cards, pin numbers, get myself online, with the help of some great staff members from the banks.

The problems I now have :
1) my joint current account my husband has stolen say £5000 from it and the bank has said there is nothing I can do about this and they say they cannot stop him from doing this, he has set up his own current account with the same bank, transferred the money from our joint account into his personal account, it was all done without my knowledge and it's too late, they cannot take it back from his account and put it into joint funds. My husband has no idea I can see what he has done or that I now have online access to the stealing of joint money. They have now written to him to tell him I wish him removed from the account but say they cannot stop any further transactions.

2) my joint mortgage offsetting account has let's say £50,000 in it and I can see it would be extremely easy for him to do the same with that account and withdraw all the money and put into his own personal bank account. Again the bank says I am powerless to stop him potentially doing this.

So firstly, does anyone know if I can "freeze" these accounts to stop him from interfering further with these accounts and steal from them even more money than what he has already taken? IF I can do this, how do I do it?

And secondly, can I legally take him to court to get him to return the money he has taken? I am finding it extremely hard to cope with the emotional as well as financial aspect of this.

Please help me financial / legal experts before my husband does a runner with the joint funds.

Many thanks

ricecakesrule Fri 16-Aug-13 09:28:12

Hi, am sure more knowledgeable people will be along soon but just wanted to reassure you that as you're married, all your assets will be considered assets of the family for divorce / finance purposes. If you know the number of his sole account or it is traceable through bank transfers etc, then this money will be taken into account when dividing up the money. It's more of a concern if he is spending the money, but even then a court can punish a party who had behaved badly with finances by failing to disclose assets or attempting to siphon them off.

Assuming you are looking to divorce, I would suggest you get a free initial interview with a solicitor and mention your concerns re finances. Make sure you have statements showing the state of your accounts as at separation, the solicitor will then have evidence to show a court if your husband starts trying to empty them. I used to be a family solicitor and we spent a lot of time tracing where assets had disappeared to when one party was effectively preparing to leave the other.

Horrible stuff, hope you're doing OK and sure you will get some better advice soon!

ComtesseDeFrouFrou Fri 16-Aug-13 09:31:21

You really, really need to see a lawyer about this. They will be able to get the bank to do something, but only they an advise as to the best way to achieve it.

Most solicitors will offer a free initial meeting - look for a solicitor or lawyer that's a member of the Family Law panel.

mysteryfairy Fri 16-Aug-13 09:35:12

Tell the bank the accounts are in dispute and they should freeze them immediately. I imagine the offset mortgage will make this more difficult but they should still do it. I would do this today, imagine if he takes the mortgage back up to the original limit then £5k may pale into insignificance.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 16-Aug-13 09:35:43

Firstly call the bank and freeze your account, tell them you are getting divorced and that this account and its funds are now under dispute.

you can freeze the account.

Follow up any verbal agreement with the bank with a written one confirming what the phone call said and state that any funds removed after this point is the banks liability as you have received verbal confirmation that they will freeze the bank account as you have warned them of what is happening.

Get a new bank account under your own name and transfer all direct debits pertaining to you and your house in which you live to leave form that account, except the mortgage ensure you keep making mortgage payments as you will lose your house if you don't.
Once the account is frozen you will be unable to withdraw any funds from the account, direct debits will all bounce, so it is very important you transfer all your own essential d/d's to your new bank account.

HSBC are very good at freezing accounts. Barclays are shite and incompetent and will try and hold you responsible if they fail in freezing your account after repeatedly reassuring you verbally they have.

Bitter experience.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 16-Aug-13 09:37:02

Oh and get a shit hot lawyer.

fuzzywuzzy Fri 16-Aug-13 09:43:00

Also if you have children together with this man, call the CSA and start that ball rolling too.

Call the council and notify them that you are the only adult in your house and you get a discount there too.

sort out tax credits as well.

Make sure you notify all places you get money in from of your new bank account details, i.e. child benefit, tax credits, work, CSA

clam Fri 16-Aug-13 09:44:30

Are there sufficient funds for you to withdraw £5000 of your own to another account? And then freeze it?

RedHelenB Fri 16-Aug-13 19:06:48

it needn't necessarily be "stealing" - if he has left the house then he will need money for rent & maybe furniture etc.

RedHelenB Fri 16-Aug-13 19:08:32

And why should his name be removed from the joint account - best thing is to have them frozen until you can decide the financial situation between you.

luvmy4kids Sat 17-Aug-13 11:28:49

Alas I cannot freeze the accounts still but working on it with one of the banks and I cannot have a new bank account, alas Clam's idea is impossible, bit difficult to explain why here.

It is indeed stealing, he has admitted he has done it to make the children suffer, he already has his own flat and furnished. No he's done it to hurt us all. He knows eventually he'll be forced to hand it back - however god knows what happens if he's spent it!

Thanks fuzzywuzzy especially.

RedHelenB Sun 18-Aug-13 08:44:09

He won't necessarily have to hand it back but it will be accounted for when you settle your finances, of which he will be entitled to a share. He may well be able to say that it was towards living costs because he is still having to live somewhere other than the mortgaged home, is he still paying money towards the mortgage?

It's the ofset mortgage that sounds like potentially the biggest headache - have you much equity in your home? Or could you see if the terms of the account could be changed to both of you having to sign?

fuzzywuzzy Sun 18-Aug-13 08:51:04

You can't make changes to a joint account without permission from both signatories. Doubt the H will agree to any changes.

anniealan Sun 18-Aug-13 09:08:58

I'm sorry but did I read that right he's done this to make the children suffer? What a bastard! I would be livid if he helped make them then he should help pay for them who in their right mind makes children suffer?

babybarrister Sun 18-Aug-13 16:00:53

Contact bank ASAP and tell them you no longer consent to any further debts on either account. Look on resolution website and get yourself a good family lawyer

luvmy4kids Sun 18-Aug-13 22:54:18

A little bit of take-back may well happen soon, just a few fine details to finish and to decided to I take the backlog of money owed or do I do the maintenance for the whole year or maybe for 10 years even.

I don't want any financial revenge but I feel I wish I could tell his colleagues the sort of person they are working with.

All his living expenses have been accounted for already, he's not taking money for that reason, he stated quite clearly to someone I know who is also a barrister that it is has been done with the express intention of hurting his children financially.

Oh and tonight I was told "it is disingenuous to suggest to the children than just because your husband has not asked or tried to see the children in 3 months and has made phone calls lasting 10 minutes, you should not be telling them that their dad has abandoned them" The last laugh might be on me in a few days.

holidaysarenice Sun 18-Aug-13 22:57:44

Now they have written to him he knows what you are doing. He may remove the lot.

My advice is to do the same. Remove enough to last you and freeze the accounts.

See a solicitor. Your dh is one step ahead of you.

babybarrister Mon 19-Aug-13 14:45:27

Do not kill the golden goose - it would be v unwise to say anything to his colleagues. Get yourself a good family lawyer who is a member of resolution

JessicaLuis232 Sat 03-Sep-16 08:20:33

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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