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Main earner?

(22 Posts)
IronNeonClasp Wed 04-Jan-17 19:08:07

Anyone experience of being main earner in relationship breakdown? Earn just over twice as much. Have 2 DC. Would I end up paying him maintenance? House in negative equity. I paid off unsecured loan on house. My credit score is top 900's atm. I could potentially secure a deposit to buy a house. We can't afford two houses..

He doesn't want to leave house despite my asking about 5 times last year due to behaviour / relationship breakdown.

Just asking if anyone has been in a similar position. I am looking into professional advice, but I just won't bloody bother if I am screwed from the onset.

JsOtherHalf Wed 04-Jan-17 21:46:14

Are you married?
Who is considered the main carer of the DC?

IronNeonClasp Wed 04-Jan-17 21:48:06

Thanks so much for replying.
Married 3y together 12. Both childcare together right now.

JsOtherHalf Wed 04-Jan-17 22:04:53

Whose name is the child benefit in?

Evieb84 Wed 04-Jan-17 22:39:21

Hey, I've just split from my hand I earn more than him. It all depends on who has the kids really. I have my dds the majority of the time and he has to pay me maintenance in line with what he earns. Not sure about the house situation as we were lucky enough to sell ours and I agreed to split the equity 50:50. Although I was told I was entitled to 75%

Evieb84 Wed 04-Jan-17 22:40:13

Hand??? Husband!

IronNeonClasp Thu 05-Jan-17 06:38:11

Thanks Evie. He would want 50/50 split

CB goes into my a/c. I sort all finances. Everything comes out of my a/c. Only a few things in joint names.

No equity in house.

Evieb84 Thu 05-Jan-17 07:19:36

Exactly the same as me, unfortunately when it comes to the bills and stuff the courts don't seem to care if you've been paying the lions share and it isn't taken into consideration. There's a good calculator on the csa website to give you an idea of what your entitled to. As for the house, might be worth seeing a solicitor? Mine offered a free half hour consultation to give me an idea of my rights. She was fantastic and also gave me options that I hadn't even thought of.
Good luck smile

EnormousTiger Thu 05-Jan-17 07:28:33

I think you should stay in the house and buy him out of his share (which is what I did in my divorce - I earned 10x more but we both worked full time). In our case he did not want the children so it was easy on that score. he will probably stay living in the house until you buy him out. I cannot see the point in your selling and then you buying a new house unless the current one is far too big as you'll just waste money on stamp duty.

However if your husband works just a few hours a week and is really the housewife of the family as it were he might well get the house and chidlren and maintenance as many women do so do take some good legal advice on all this.

IronNeonClasp Thu 05-Jan-17 07:45:08

Thanks Enormous and Evie.

Both work full-time and cover school run between us. Extremely small house (ridiculously small).

EnormousTiger Thu 05-Jan-17 10:52:09

If the children will be with each of you half the time and your husband is a low earner it might be worth designating them as living with him as he may then get a lot of tax credits and housing benefit (plus the child benefit) and might then mean he could afford to rent a decent place whilst you buy somewhere (or keep what you currently own and live in). I know that of course may not work if you want the children with you more than with him. Also in my case the older ones were teenagers so have a choice in where they live. Younger children go where their parents or the courts say.

FV45 Thu 05-Jan-17 22:53:13

I am main earner. We have 50:50 care of younger son (older one is 17 and chooses to stay with me and see his dad now and again). He is EA and I'm going through court to get more residency.
Neither pay maintenance.
I bought him out of house. Finances were split 50:50 so he has massive lump and I have mortgage now ( we were mortgage free ) and no savings at all. He didn't get any of my pension (modest but significant).

He was told to get a better job.

He nominally did more childcare but it was really only the fun stuff - a bit like a nanny.

IronNeonClasp Fri 06-Jan-17 12:41:20

Thank you. I really appreciate your posts.

mrssapphirebright Fri 06-Jan-17 13:43:31

I was the main earner in my last marriage (and instigated the divorce). We split childcare 50:50 and still do so no maintenance paid either way.

We had quite a bit of equity in our house and sold it and split the profits 50:50. he went on to buy a smaller house with a small mortgage and I went on to buy a bigger house with bigger mortgage!

We were amicable and fair though.

I also let him claim the chb for the dc so he could claim tax credits for them. I earn too much so can't claim them anyway and him claiming them means he could afford a nice small 3 bed house instead of a pokey flat so his relationship with the dc is not affected.

We were both adement that the dc shouldn't suffer.

IronNeonClasp Fri 06-Jan-17 14:40:40

Wow MrsSapphire - sounds too good to be true. Are you divorced?

IronNeonClasp Fri 06-Jan-17 14:43:32

Sorry re-read but wondered how divorce so amicable?
We are in negative equity unfortunately

mrssapphirebright Fri 06-Jan-17 15:01:49

Yes, married 15 years, divorced for 4.

It was hard to be amicable at first. I instigated the split and he did not want to, despite knowing our marriage was dead. he wanted us t stay together for the sake of the dc.

i guess in a way we needed to be amicable really. Neither of us have any family nearby and both needed the other to work / cover childcare. He works full time nights and me full time days! Neither of us wanted the dc to suffer.

Its very hard to be amicable, but i think if you both out the dc first then it becomes hard not to in a way. It has been hard for both of us to suck stuff up and be mature at times.

Like you I was very worried about the finance side of things. If we had not have had enough equity in the house then I would have left him in the marital home until the dc were 18 and then it would be sold. then i would've had to rent until then. Admittedly i would not be able to afford the house i have now (as rent much more expensive), but it would've been big enough for me and the dc.

mrssapphirebright Fri 06-Jan-17 15:08:14

I should add that although exh and I get on well most of the time and are always civil / friendly in front of the dc, me being the main earner of us both still has caused a bit of an issue over the years post divorce.

He has a really low mortgage and is now semi retired. His outgoings are quite small and he lives simply. I on the other hand have a big mortgage (i am 10 years younger than him though). Yes, i have a bigger, nicer house, but i work more hours than him in quite a stressful job to pay for it. I have also remarried so obviously have all the benefits of a two adult household, which he doesn't. Although he doesn't mention it in a nasty way, and is pleasant and amicable with my dh, I know that feels a bit hard done by when I get to go on holidays etc and he can't (although could if he worked full time).

Neither of us are really money driven though so I think that helped. It was never really an issue when we were married and we had / have a similar view to money so I think that has helped.

mrssapphirebright Fri 06-Jan-17 15:13:29

If you and you dh cannot agree how to split assets then it is likely you will have to go to mediation.

A court / solicitors will look at affordability. Can he afford to stay in the house and pay for it all? If you agree a 50:50 childcare access agreement then no maintenance needs to be paid either way. if he could justify he is the main carer of the dc then he could get to stay in the house.

What would be cheaper, your mortgage or a rental property?

If you will fight to be the dc main carer and you can afford to stay in the house then he would have to move into rented.

A court will look at the fairest option for you both in terms of standard of living and affordability. Custody / access of the dc will be a decider in your case though.

scottishjo Sun 08-Jan-17 09:38:06

A lot of this will come down to what he will agree to, it would be much better if you can agree between you without having to go through the court (stating the obvious, sorry).

I'm also the main earner, my ex agreed to a clean break and minimal child maintenance with me getting the house, in return for me taking on the mortgage (it is too big for him to afford anyway) and all of the family debts, which are substantial because he spent money like it was going out of fashion. I probably came off worse, financially speaking, although there is some equity in the house, but it was more important for me to keep the house for the kids at this point. We agreed between us, put it into a separation agreement and used an online divorce service. It's quite an unconventional agreement and probably not something solicitors would have advised but the court accepted it without any question and it suited us. (The CM is only £10 per month but my thinking is, he wouldn't pay it anyway and I don't want the stress of chasing it.)

We separated nearly 4 years ago and by the time we divorced (late 2016) he was keen to get on with his new life/relationship with minimum baggage. I think it would have been different if I'd tried to push for divorce immediately after we separated, then he was talking about wanting custody, etc. In the end, he sees the kids in theory once a week for three hours (in practice more like once or twice a month) and says he doesn't have time to see them more.

Is there any chance of him agreeing to move out on a trial basis so things can cool off if you both meet the cost of that? It seems to me that getting him out of the house is the biggest hurdle at this point.

EnormousTiger Sun 08-Jan-17 10:55:45

Actually that's another thing with our divorce ( I earn 10x more) - that our financial consent order which we agreed via our solicitors says whoever the children live with pays for them (the opposite of the usual deal) plus I pay the school fees and university costs whatever and as my ex didn't want the chidlren even a night a year (how weird is that!) that means I pay everything and he pays nothing but at least I got a clean break and do not have to pay him any spousal support payments.

We stayed living together right through to the bitter end (7 months - no court hearings) for decree nisi, negotiations over money, remortgage to take him off the loan, house transfer just into my name, court sealing of consent order, decree absolute). At the end it was the conveyancing, mortgage and property transfer that held us up for at least another 2 months by the way even though consent order adn terms were all agreed. He moved out 1 - 2 days after all that was done but not sooner. I could tolerate our still being in the same house as I knew the end was in sight.

Porffor Mon 09-Jan-17 21:35:23

So relieved to read I'm not alone in being the larger earner. my husband is main carer for our 3 DC's, one is grown and nearly 18 but in education.

Rent scares me the prices and uncertainty - we are council tenants so have more security. I've never owned a property though and not sure i'd get a mortgage.

I'm in a position of uncertainty - how i go about this, who moves out, has the girls, and where we go from here. I hate being the one that is instigating this, but nothings feels salvageable anymore.

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