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considering petitioning, am I making the right decision?

(6 Posts)
MollyBloomYes Fri 18-Mar-16 18:10:46

Ex left in November, about four weeks before ds2 was born. We're now in a pretty civil place, have made agreements about child maintenance and access which aren't legally documented because we recognise a need for flexibility (ds1 is only a toddler so plenty of time for new arrangements to be needed with the start of school, ex wants to be able to give more every time he gets a promotion etc). The lack of anything legally binding does bother me sometimes.

I originally thought that the only way we would be able to divorce is to wait 2 years for us to be living apart for that amount of time. However it may be that I could cite unreasonable behaviour and he wouldn't contest (am yet to talk to him, want to at least see if it would be a good idea before putting it to him). Would it be madness to do this? The only reason not to that I can think of is I would lose next of kin status which could have ramifications for his life insurance should anything happen. I don't care for me but obviously want to make sure my kids are ok, especially as it's going to take me a couple of years at least to get back to a decent wage after childcare costs.

I'm looking into consent orders as well but think what we really need is some sort of flexible consent order as neither of us are particularly keen on 'set in stone' days at the moment but happy to work around schedules. Appreciate this will change once kids are in school etc. He also doesn't live somewhere suitable to have them currently so it's limited to days out with them anyway. The finances as well may change as each of us gets different jobs and debts get paid down. Not sure such a thing exists but would rather some sort of legal assurance just in case. All very well him saying I can trust him but I also trusted him to stick around so...hmm

Anyone with any experience or knowledge to say if this is a bad idea or not? Thank you!

iyamehooru Fri 18-Mar-16 18:34:19

You can have a judicial separation, google it!

A consent order doesn't have to mention contact but can mention child and spousal maintenance. Not sure how long you've been married but due to age of children spousal maintenance may apply.

Best thing to do is go and have a half hour free appointment with a good solicitor.

Whinfell10 Sat 19-Mar-16 06:57:39

Hey- I am not a lawyer but can pass on info my lawyer given me. I would definitely have a chat to a lawyer too and also online tools such as wiki divorce I've found useful too.

The reasons for unreasonable behaviour can be really mild, so if you want to go down that route and just get it sorted that is an definitely option- the one i am pursuing.

About the kids - if you guys have come to an agreement with kids and access there is no need to write anything down, the courts will only get involved if they really really have to so the advice have been given on access is to try and sort it out between you if at all possible. Also you can write what you want in an order but you can't force someone to show up and see their kids.

The financial order part to a divorce is different and lots of different element with kids maintenance, spousal maintenance and division of assets etc. Here I would def seek legal advice. Again if you guys have an arrangement that is great and there is no reason that can't be just drawn up and signed so there is some 'official' agreement but also it would be wise to see a solicitor to get advice as there might be stuff you are entitled to, other considerations , what happens In a couple of years time etc for example you don't mention the house or savings etc

Whinfell10 Sat 19-Mar-16 07:01:15

Ps the other reason for getting it legally sorted is its all fine and good while now but it also needs to be fine and good when/ if different partners come on the scene and things can just change. I think it's really worth sorting finances so you both know where you stand. And also I was told that unless you do full financial disclosure before a legal settlement, that legal settlement could then be challenged later. Anyway just things to think about. Go see a lawyer and you can ask your ex to pay given he left you!!

MollyBloomYes Sat 19-Mar-16 10:45:10

Great, thanks for the advice. Having googled I'm not sure judicial separation is quite right for us but something to think about for sure.

Sil has a family lawyer for a best friend it turns out so this could come in handy. No real assets, ex already pays far more than he would have to if court ordered and has said he wants to pay more to benefit the boys when his job allows (he's in a profession with lots of opportunity for pay increase). I have no real reason not to believe this is the case, just want some assurance but also recognition that situation could change as years go by. Time to lawyer up, thank you smile

Minime85 Sat 19-Mar-16 20:58:23

Consent order doesn't have to have any details in about access or who has kids when. Mine doesn't just how much he will pay me for the kids until when which we decided between us

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