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He's planning to sell the house behind her back

(204 Posts)
Returnofthemaccys Wed 02-Dec-20 23:52:11

Hi, I'd welcome any advice about what to do and whether this is legal.

DH's brother is married and lives in Scotland. He bought a house with a deposit that he saved up while married. Only his name is on the deeds even though they were married when he bought it about a year ago. Their marriage is in trouble and wife has moved in with her parents 8 months ago but continues to pay the mortgage as he has lost his job and she feels sorry for him. The marriage breakdown is largely due to his behaviour (which also caused him to lose the job). Wife moved back in recently but is now saying it's over and she wants a divorce.

I've found out from DH tonight that BIL is planning to sell the house behind her back. He's going to sell it to a friend who wants to flip it as an investment property so it won't be on the market, no viewings etc. Friend will then rent it to him until after the divorce so that SIL can't get half of the deposit equity. SIL pays the mortgage by putting money in his account and he pays so I think she'll never know.

My two questions are 1) Can he do this in Scotland and get away with it, both in terms of her not knowing it's being sold out from under her and in terms of her not being entitled to the money from it in the divorce if she files for divorce after the sale? and 2) Should I tell her? I don't know her very well at all but could contact her, but it's really none of my business. My loyalty is very technically with DH's brother though actually I'm disgusted by many aspects of his behaviour. But MIL is fully on board and knows and is championing this so me getting involved would massively rock the boat.

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MyOwnSummer Wed 02-Dec-20 23:54:34

FGS tell her, I'm pretty sure this is some type of crime! She is being defrauded and that just isn't right.

SleepingStandingUp Wed 02-Dec-20 23:55:39

Oh golly what conundrum.
What does your DH think?

No advise on Scottish law but your BIL is a dick.

lucidnightmare Wed 02-Dec-20 23:58:04

Pretty sure he can’t legally do that in Scotland and would need her signature even if her name is not in mortgage or deeds. He does sound scummy enough to forge her signature though.
I’d tell her without a shadow of a doubt

lucidnightmare Thu 03-Dec-20 00:00:37

BaronessBomburst Thu 03-Dec-20 00:00:40

Can she register an interest in the house at the Scottish version of the land registry?

SillyOldMummy Thu 03-Dec-20 00:02:44

I'm not sure about (1) but unless the law is a complete ass this has surely got to be illegal. As for (2), if you can find a way to let SIL know, great - but how on earth could you do that discretely? In her anger with your BIL, surely you would be outed. You might cause a permanent rift with your inlaws. Just be careful xx

Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:05:06

Agree BIL is a dick. Absolutely no question mark there.

I'm not sure if he would forge her signature... I wouldn't put it past him but he might be scared of getting caught.

I'm raging at her for not getting her name put on the deeds and for paying the mortgage for 8 months when he wasn't even occupying the property.

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SimplyRadishing Thu 03-Dec-20 00:05:44

I would tell HIM if he tries that he'll be in a world of trouble.

Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:10:08

@lucidnightmare That link is the news I was hoping for - THANK YOU so much. I've googled my arse off since I heard but hadn't found this info.

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Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:11:34

@BaronessBomburst Yes I believe she can, from that link that Lucid has sent, but of course she'd have to know there was a risk first. She is not without her faults but she is incredibly naive - hence letting him be the only one on the deeds and paying the mortgage for him (and generally doing everything in the house etc etc)

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ruby4ever Thu 03-Dec-20 00:13:35

If I were you, I wouldn't get involved. This could lead to problems in your marriage and with your in-laws, are you prepared for that? If there's anyway of letting her know discreetly but not coming from you directly to her, so she can't out you, then try to do that.
What does your dh think?

Of course bil is being an official twat!

SheilaWilcox Thu 03-Dec-20 00:14:05

I think there would be massive fall out if you get involved. Do you really want to piss off you BIL, MIL and possibly DH?


I think I'd want her to know. Do you know where her parents live? Anonymous letter saying 'protect your assets, he is protecting his, don't give him another penny' ???

SciFiScream Thu 03-Dec-20 00:18:06

Ask a third party to send her the link to that webpage?

Hopefully the solicitor involved with the sale will keep your BIL legal. It could affect a solicitor professionally if they aide any fraud.

BaronessBomburst Thu 03-Dec-20 00:18:20

So the question now is how to register an inhibition of the property.
Could someone do it on her behalf?
If you catch my drift.........

Coyoacan Thu 03-Dec-20 00:18:38

You cannot be a party to your SIL being ripped off, especially when she has been so kind to her ex.

If you don't tell her, you are as bad as your in-laws are.

And be careful, if that family think this is a decent way to act, you could be next.

Breastfeedingworries Thu 03-Dec-20 00:19:09

Can’t you tell someone else and they tell her? Then yiu can say yiu were so worried about his plan ect and must of spoken about it with so and so, so it gets out? Without it being completely on you? Get a friend to tell her mutual friend who then messaged because as luck would have it her ex tried to do something similar to her ect ect let’s call her Jane, then Jane takes the bullet, when shit hits the fan it turns out janes got a lot her plate and it wasn’t her fault...ect badsically a web of lies grin

Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:20:16

DH thinks we should stay out of it. He did tell both BIL and MIL that it's a pretty grim thing to do and both went on their absolute high horses about the fact the deposit is HIS money (saved up while living off someone on a higher salary... ) and how terribly the wife has treated him blah blah. So DH feels the same as me but just like it's nothing to do with us.

I think it would be almost impossible to tip her off without them knowing it's come from me or DH as it's only MIL and the brothers in the know. You're right that it could cause a world of trouble with my inlaws. I just feel like a right shit knowing and not doing anything BUT if that link is correct and he can't do this by law, then I feel better as he probably won't get away with it.

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Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:21:03

@BaronessBomburst Oh! That's an interesting thought....!

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Fancycrackers Thu 03-Dec-20 00:21:09

Agree with PP that if you can, find a way of telling her under the radar. I'm guessing you will have her contact details so maybe a friendly text to see how she is and then secretly tell her from there. But yes, it will be obvious that it was you who told her and you might alienate your BIL and MIL - who sound like a nightmare anyway

Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:23:52

And be careful, if that family think this is a decent way to act, you could be next.

Yes. MIL is an odd mixture of lovely if you're on her 'team' and downright ruthless if you aren't.

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giantangryrooster Thu 03-Dec-20 00:24:02

Do tell her, if you are afraid of a fall out do it anonymously and/or to someone who has her best interest at heart.

And again do tell her, this could be you. In the future if your marriage gets off track, you could suffer the same immoral/criminal behaviors.
Your dh's family background sounds morally rocky at best.

Returnofthemaccys Thu 03-Dec-20 00:25:43

Thank you - there's no under the radar way to tell her unfortunately. We live in another country and don't have any mutual friends. We rarely even see them so in theory none of this affects our lives much, it just feels horrible.

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WelliesWithHeels Thu 03-Dec-20 00:27:19

I'd be chilled to the bone if I was married into a family who supports illegal and immoral behavior like this. It's even worse as you say that he is problematic and has also lost his job over his bad actions.
It's totally understandable that you are reluctant to get involved, but I think you should think about if you would want to be warned if the roles were reversed. Maybe put a little thought into how to warn her anonymously (a throwaway email, a mutual friend). Or, if you don't like deception, and it sounds like you have a strong moral compass, tell your husband that you won't participate in your SIL getting financially abused in a major way and either he can say something or you will.
Lastly, the second she gets a solicitor, his fraud will be easily and quickly brought to light and could really harm his negotiating position for all of the other details that need to be settled in a divorce (if not worse consequences).
Good luck, OP!

Italiangreyhound Thu 03-Dec-20 00:28:00

Agree with giantangryrooster

"Do tell her, if you are afraid of a fall out do it anonymously and/or to someone who has her best interest at heart."

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