He's left the house now to go and stay with a relative. What should I be doing? I've just asked about council tax discount. I work more than 16 hours so don't think I'm entitled to any other help. At some stage we will need to look at finances and whether we need to sell the house (I guess we will) but this hasn't been discussed yet. We certainly have no spare money for him to live elsewhere. How is the house split bearing in mind I will need to buy something bigger as a family home? I know I will need to see a solicitor at some stage and will try and get a free 30 min appointment. What questions should I be asking in that time and what should I take with me? Any advice very welcome.
The first thing I would do is try and make an appointment to see the CAB. They can advise you whether you would be eligible for any further financial help, and help with practical advice. I would try and see a solicitor sooner rather than later, CAB I think could help with this too (at least they offered that to me, but then my H left me without a dime). Bank accounts... call banks, tell them what has happened and seperate finances/credit cards etc as soon as you can. Is the split friendly? Is he planning on giving you child maintenance? You should at least speak to Child Maintenance Options to get an idea of what he owes the child/ren. If there is any animosity at all, go straight to CSA.
Another thing that happened to me, if he still has keys, remember he can and will come back to pick up things whether you are home or not. Anything you want to keep, have a copy of, is of value - get it out of the house and somewhere safe. It is immensely irritating to find laptops/half of the silverware/evidence of his salary/the radio etc etc missing, and your mutual ideas of what belongs to who may not be quite the same (mine felt strongly all my jewellery belonged to him, for example). My solicitor advised, keep whatever you want and argue about it later, bearing in mind (assuming you are the main carer of the children) that you will need things for their home.
I wouldn't go to the CAB as an alternative to seeing a solicitor properly. I do advice sessions at the CAB and the best I can do in the time that I have with someone is give a brief overview - something that I could cover in the free half hour that I offer to clients in my office anyway. Often people have to wait a few weeks at my local CAB.