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Can anybody explain why someone would not get divorced if the marriage is totally over?

(21 Posts)
Summer1967 Wed 12-Feb-14 16:54:36

My brother's wife has left the marital home with their 2 young children. There is no mortgage on the property and he owned the house outright before he got married to her.

I don't know the details of exactly why the marriage has broken down apart from the fact that they seem totally unsuited to each other.

When I spoke to her I asked if her intention was to get divorced and she said she hadn't yet decided.

What i'd like to know is are there any good reasons why you would stay married if your marriage was so clearly over? Could it be (thinking cynically) that she wants to stay married in order to benefit from any financial position in years to come?

Sorry, I don't know much about the whole process at all and would be grateful for any views.

Dwerf Wed 12-Feb-14 16:56:48

The money is costs to get divorced and the fear of all the crap being raked up possibly? I can't afford to divorce yet.

LauraBridges Wed 12-Feb-14 17:25:28

She probably just isn't very sure of what she wants to do.
Do you know if she has registered her spousal right over the home with the Land Registry (assuming the house is not in joint names). If there are young children and she doesn't work it is likely she will get the house and your brother will have to move out to some poky flat as divorce is appalling and favours lower earners.

coffeeandcream Wed 12-Feb-14 17:31:42

My parents hated each other and their empty shell marriage went on for years as DM didn't have access to money to leave. He stayed married just to control her and make her life he'll but told everyone it was an insult to God to divorce.

Except he was one if the most hypocritical Christians imaginable!

Sorry, all a bit depressing sad

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Wed 12-Feb-14 17:43:39

The cost and doubts over help from the ex if it's currently fine. Difficulty with family members on either side.

My parents lived separately for many years and this was my mother's reasons for not pushing for it (my father's family as very...vicious to exes. Both my mother and my cousins' mother have been cut out of all photos after divorcing). She really didn't care as long as it didn't affect her ability to live and care for us. My father only pushed for it because he wanted to remarry. Turned out he was hiding a lot of debt, had used the time to drain any assets that he might have been legally been given at least partially to my mother (and spent it). Still had to pay alimony until my younger sister was 18 but gave a lot less after it and was really nasty in court. It was very stressful for my mother and I can see now why she avoided it for so long.

Summer1967 Wed 12-Feb-14 19:16:33

Thank you for all your replies. She has registered her spousal right over the home - and yes, she doesn't work and has 2 small children. All looks rather disastrous as far as my brother is concerned. I'm just wondering if he should get divorce proceedings under way now as I'm worried that as time moves on he'll end up in an even worse position financially.

LauraBridges Wed 12-Feb-14 20:15:54

He needs to sit down with a solicitor for an hour. If it's England, not Scotland remember assets are divided at date of the court hearing or agreement NOT the date of separation so if he might suddenly inherit or his income is shooting up the sooner they reach agreement on the divorce finances the better. if instead his income is going down and down then waiting is not a problem. Also if she's like to shack up with someone else that will reduce her needs and maintenance so again some people wait for that to happen. If she won't then he might want a clean break with only payments for the children if the lump sum she gets is enough.

If their only asset is the house the chances are she will get it all until the children are 18 or until she remarries

Never marry someone who earns less and never let them give up ful time work is the lesson..... Or just move them in with no marriage and a good cohabitation agreement.

Amicus1966 Wed 12-Feb-14 22:49:28

Never marry someone who earns less than you.

joanofarchitrave Wed 12-Feb-14 22:55:03

I think it's quite important not to have children that earn less than you. If he waits long enough, the children can start earning and there'll be no need for a financial settlement at all.

I have to say if DH's sister rang me and asked for my intentions in a similar situation I'd say 'Yes, your nieces/nephews are coping, thanks for asking. They'd love to see you. Now mind your own business.'

Summer1967 Thu 13-Feb-14 08:57:16

Well joaneofarchitrave, it's just as well that she called me then! Sorry, but blood is thicker than water and from the moment that they met I have seen what she's capable of....she came to the relationship/marriage with absolutely nothing and from what I've read/researched, she's going to be leaving with a whole lot more.

I'm beginning to think that the sooner he gets divorced from her the better. Both my parents are elderly, one very sick, and I wonder if she has her eyes on any inheritance that might come his way.

I have to say, I can't quite figure out why she's left the home. I would have thought that she would have been better off staying in the home with the children and getting him to leave....but then he wouldn't have done.

And another thing I don't understand is that this new home that she's gone to has been provided for by the council I believe. Surely she would have been asked if she had a home. Are houses "handed" out as easily as that?! I suspect that she has a whole load of debt to her name as well and she's keeping that hidden.

And it's not possible to wait until the children start earning...4 and 5 years old currently!

heliumheart Thu 13-Feb-14 18:36:56

Maybe things at home with your brother were so horrendous she felt she had little choice?

For her to move out and into a council home suggests she may have felt desperate - and hardly the move of a calculating money- grabber as you suggest she might be. No lawyer would advise she move out as financially it's not a good idea - so perhaps you should consider that your 'blood is thicker than water' prejudice is skewing your perception of he situation.

Summer1967 Thu 13-Feb-14 19:48:02

Maybe things were so horrendous that she felt she had little choice.

Maybe she felt desperate - and maybe she isn't a money grabber.

However, I don't think that my "blood is thicker than water" prejudice is skewing my perception of the situation.

She drank incessantly, smoked tobacco and weed and took god knows what else whilst pregnant. Any wonder that her youngest is underdeveloped, having to have speech therapy and looks good deal younger than he really is because he's so desperately small.

Personally, I'm glad she's left. It's her kids that I feel sorry for. Despite the fact that they my nephews, I don't feel attached to them in any way. I wonder why....I know that my brother will want to provide for them, but she is a different matter altogether.

heliumheart Thu 13-Feb-14 19:52:07

Personally, I'm glad she left."

Really? It wasn't clear from your posts.... confused

StupidMistakes Thu 13-Feb-14 20:05:36

I left my now ex husband in November 2011, and didn't immediately file for divorce, I had the financial side to sort <tax credits, child benefit, income support> to sort out, housing to deal with and various medical things, like getting a doctor as I am on repeat prescriptions which I need <epilepsy being one> I spoke to citizens advice and they advised I sort my other more pressing issues out first and then file for divorce, 3 days before Christmas 2011 I got a letter from his solicitor asking for a divorce and contact, however I waited 10 weeks for him to file, before asking to file myself, he in the end didn't even sign the divorce papers but my divorce was granted 6 or so months ago after an 18 month fight to get it.

For me sorting out housing and money was more important than a piece of paper finalising the marriage, we had no assets to divide so no cause for concern there, and wasn't likely to inherit, so knew he had no claim over anything, <other than the 2pound odd in my bank>

Cabrinha Fri 14-Feb-14 17:22:26

Sounds very recent? Lots of people wait for 2 years to do the divorce under the 2 year separation rule. Perhaps when she says she isn't sure about divorce yet, she means she isn't sure whether to divorce immediately using unreasonable behaviour, or to wait.

Incidentally, I'm going through a divorce and have chosen not to get my absolute until the finances are tied up, for various reasons.

LauraBridges Sat 15-Feb-14 08:08:09

Cab's point is very important. Most divorce lawyers will say don't get the absolute until you have a signed and sealed by the court financial consent order for legal reasons and I would recommend getting on with that as assets are divided at divorce not separation in English (not Scottish) law.

bakingaddict Sat 15-Feb-14 08:23:16

Whether you feel bonded to your nephews or not the children are the priority. You worry about your brother getting shafted and by all accounts have painted a picture of being a distant aunty despite having concerns about the welfare of the children in regards to their own mother. You are not coming across very well here but I don't know you or your family

If your concerns about their mother are as you say then advise your brother to seek 50:50 custody and focus your attentions on the children rather than what he stands to lose financially

Summer1967 Sat 15-Feb-14 12:25:59

Bakingaddict I don't see that just because I've said what I have that should result in you saying that I'm not coming across very well on here. Although to be honest, that's not a great concern to me. And yes, you don't know me or my family - thank goodness.

I asked a question. And I've outlined, in the space of a few paragraphs, what the situation is. Why should I not be concerned as to what he stands to lose financially? Strangely enough, what he might lose financially will eventually impact on those children in the long term.....they are his family and his priority.

FinallyCanHearMyselfThink Mon 17-Feb-14 21:12:54

I'm wondering how old your brother is and why he can't check into these things himself? He is an adult, is he not?

Perhaps a bit of a bugbear to me, as STBXH's sister is forever sticking her nose in and trying to "sort" things that are, quite frankly, none of her business.

I have to say that if my SIL asked me what my "intentions" were now that STBXH and I were separated, I'd probably be less than polite. And the answer would include something along the lines of "mind your own business."

I suspect your brother, if he is making decent money, is perfectly capable of protecting his own finances without you looking out for him.

Why should I not be concerned as to what he stands to lose financially?
Because it's none of your business?

Despite the fact that they my nephews, I don't feel attached to them in any way.

God, you really are a charmer, aren't you?

It's highly possible that she didn't give you a straight answer because she quite rightly thinks it's none of your business and didn't want to discuss it with you.

wilkos Tue 18-Feb-14 00:07:48

If your brother is anything like you she's well rid.

LyndaCartersBigPants Tue 18-Feb-14 00:27:53

It's a pain in the arse and it costs money.

I separated from my ex over 2 years ago. Filed for divorce over a year ago, but can't afford the solicitors fees to get it sorted, can't agree on a financial settlement and can't really be arsed with it all.

We agree on the DCs and I have a new DP who doesn't mind that I'm still technically married.

And don't get me started on changing my name back. I'm dreading all the letters and paperwork that will entail hmm

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