Talk

Advanced search

Please help me help my mum

(27 Posts)
Nuggy2013 Fri 24-Feb-17 10:30:49

Long story short: dad is clearly having an affair, although currently not confronted but evidence available is conclusive.

They've never had a great marriage/relationship. Mum was breadwinner, bought the house, paid the mortgage and can prove this and his name wasn't even on the deeds or mortgage until 2006 despite them being married for 49 years. He was always 'in and out' of work and never contributed financially, again, there's no evidence he contributed financially.

All my mum has is her house. Does she have to give him 50% of it? How does she make him leave? Currently, it's up for sale as he convinced her they should move but since going on the market, he refuses to look at anywhere to move to and evidence regarding his affair has come to light. If they do sell, she won't be able to buy anywhere else due to prices and will be left homeless as she is at retirement age and cannot go out working due to ill health. He is unaware that my mum knows of his affair. My dad has always had separate finances due to work situation but has been saving a lot of money and living a very nice lifestyle in comparison to my mum.

Has anyone been in a similar situation and can advise a course of action? I'm really concerned about my mums mental health and wellbeing while she makes a plan of action. She's been to her doctor, phoned women's aid as there's a lot of emotional abuse but she needs concrete steps in order to ensure they're not having to share the house any longer than necessary

Thanks for reading and any advice is welcome

Nuggy2013 Fri 24-Feb-17 10:31:10

Bumping out of desperation

PigletWasPoohsFriend Fri 24-Feb-17 10:36:21

They've never had a great marriage/relationship. Mum was breadwinner, bought the house, paid the mortgage and can prove this and his name wasn't even on the deeds or mortgage until 2006 despite them being married for 49 years. He was always 'in and out' of work and never contributed financially, again, there's no evidence he contributed financially.

They are married so it is a joint asset. It makes no difference that your DM made the most money.

PigletWasPoohsFriend Fri 24-Feb-17 10:37:16

Your DM and DF both need separate legal advise.

sunshinesupermum Fri 24-Feb-17 10:42:38

Your Mum needs legal advice ASAP esp if she wants to divorce him for adultery but after a long marriage I'm afraid it is usually a 50% asset split. But she MAY be able to negotiate a better deal through a solicitor as you can prove he didn't contribute financially. Am so sorry for you both. flowers

Batteriesallgone Fri 24-Feb-17 10:51:51

50% of a family house could maybe buy her a nice flat if the mortgage is fully paid off?

It's been a long marriage I would think he'd get 50%. If your mum was main breadwinner and he did more childcare etc he may be entitled to more. I know a woman who was a SAHM then housewife, marriage breakdown in their sixties, she got 70%.

Penfold007 Fri 24-Feb-17 11:16:39

DM needs legal advice, she also needs get important documents and information together, maybe store them at your house for security. Alongside birth and marriage certificates also get together as much financial evidence as possible of the mortgage, her bank statements and his savings. It is very likely to be a 50/50 split but that includes his savings.

Nuggy2013 Fri 24-Feb-17 11:29:03

Oh dear. Dad never did any childcare of any description so it seems so harsh he gets 50% without any contribution to it. She's in the process of organising a solicitor so hopefully she can negotiate a better percentage. Unfortunately, what she'll get out of the house won't buy her a bedsit. Seems completely unjust.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 11:58:42

OP I'm very alarmed your father is on the title deeds of the property. I was in the same situation as your mum, bread winner and paid 100% for mortgage but ended up paying 50% to X because his name was on title deeds even though I could prove he did not pay a penny in 20 years of marriage. You need to understand that divorce is financial litigation and has nothing to do with fairness. She needs a rottweiler of a lawyer otherwise she will be fleeced and in a bedsit in her retirement.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 12:04:29

OP your mum needs to kick your dad out of the house and serve divorce papers stating that the cause is infidelity because if she stays with him for > 6 months after his affair she cannot cite that as a reason for the divorce. She will have to use "unreasonable circumstances". Get an accurate assessment of your dad's assets in case he's hiding funds. Hire an aggressive lawyer for your mum who will make your dad an attractive enough offer that's less than 50% of house otherwise she will lose 50% of her house.

Batteriesallgone Sat 25-Feb-17 12:07:39

more on the deeds or not, after a long marriage he's entitled to 50% of their combined assets.

oldfatandtired1 Sat 25-Feb-17 17:23:52

nuggy is she in England? If so it matters not one bit who paid for the house after such a long marriage, it's a matrimonial asset that goes into the 'pot' along with any pensions, savings etc. It doesn't matter who's 'at fault' (affair) either. Every case is different, they all start at 50/50 but rarely is it a 50/50 split unless both parties are the same age, earn the same, have the same pensions (for example). I got 90% of house and a substantial share of my ex's pensions after a 25 year marriage because he earned 3x my salary and I had done the lion's share of childcare (taking freelance work as and when I could). She needs to see a family law solicitor as a matter of priority.

PigletWasPoohsFriend Sat 25-Feb-17 17:34:11

OP your mum needs to kick your dad out of the house

He has every right to stay until divorce and finances are settled. A solicitor in fact would advise him to do so.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 18:59:46

OP your father will not necessarily get X of the house. My X's lawyer went nuclear and decided he would bankrupt me by claiming more than 50% of joint assets and X refused to declare his generous pension assets and other cash accounts. I gave X an ultimatum and he took the cash so he could walk away without paying to pay a penny for our only child's upkeep. My docile solicitor said X wouldn't take it but he did because he wanted a pot of cash.

Batteries confuses "entitled" with "deserves". My solicitor described divorce as "financial litigation". The law has nothing to do with fairness but a legal fight. Don't let your mum go down without a fight.

PigletWasPoohsFriend Sat 25-Feb-17 19:03:52

Hire an aggressive lawyer for your mum who will make your dad an attractive enough offer that's less than 50% of house otherwise she will lose 50% of her house.

It isn't her house. It is their house. You can spin it as much as you like. The law says it is a marital asset that belongs to both of them.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 19:06:59

OP find a solicitor who will fight your mum's corner. A lot of solicitors want a quiet easy life and just "process" another case. They still get paid regardless of the ruinous state of your mum's finances after the divorce.

EnormousTiger Sat 25-Feb-17 19:36:55

If it is England (not scotland) then 50/50 is the starting point for the house and pensions. So she needs to find out all these extra savings her husband has hidden away, his tax returns, his P60, his savings accounts and his and her debts. She needs to know what private pension schemes he has if any and she has if any.

Fighting your corner usually means giving most of your money to the solicitors. I don't recommend it at all in the sense of spending a lot on that unless you have £20m in dispute between you 9and I write that as a lawyer). She needs to do the sums I mention above and once we have that information we can help decide what is fair/

Eg if they both just have state pension income of about the same amount, his savings are £10k, hers none, no debts and a house worth £500k then they would get in England £250k each plus £5k each. If instead the husband has £500,000 in savings hidden away she can prove them their joint assets are a millino and they get £500k each (so in my example she'd keep the £500k house and he'd get the £500k savings). In other words she needs to become detective now and get copies of all the financial paper work.

Batteriesallgone Sat 25-Feb-17 20:24:54

Yes exactly ET. A top class lawyer is going to charge top class rates. What's the point of getting 60% if you have to pay most of it away in fees.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 22:15:13

Actually Batteries the second male divorce lawyer I hired (working for a City firm) was cheaper than my first female divorce lawyer (based in Bromley) who told me I should pay my X more and use my feminine wiles to negotiate to pay a smaller settlement. The second lawyer's opening gambit was at least we are going to try to pay your X as little as possible. Don't assume an aggressive lawyer will be more expensive.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 22:23:33

OP don't assume the pension has to go into the pot. My X refused to declare his pensions but I knew what they were. I gave instructions to my lawyer and he didn't think the X would accept the offer but he did and we didn't go to court. Call your dad's bluff. If they go to court they will both be up for mammoth court fees. Don't assume your lawyer will fight as hard for you as you are willing to fight for yourself. You can negotiate with your dad for your mum in parallel with the solicitors. Girlfriends who have been through this and end up supporting their children by themselves were not going to roll over and just let their solicitor do whatever they recommended without fighting hard for themselves. Don't assume anything. The more detective work you do yourself the more you save in legal fees.

PigletWasPoohsFriend Sat 25-Feb-17 22:28:35

OP don't assume the pension has to go into the pot.

It has to be declared.

Not sure giving the OP advice that it doesn't is helpful tbh.

morewhine Sat 25-Feb-17 23:21:22

Piglet my X refused to declare his pension assets and just gave a very loose indicative income. My lawyer advised against pressing him on it and the financial consent order was approved by the court. There are lots of cookie cutter advice and exceptions.

PigletWasPoohsFriend Sat 25-Feb-17 23:27:35

My DH exW refused to declare hers and a penal notice was given to make her....

I wouldn't want the OP in the same position.

EnormousTiger Sun 26-Feb-17 12:02:45

They may each just have a state pension here however that is why many more facts are needed. My ex and I have private pensions but they were worth about the same and we were 20 years off retirement anyway at least and both in full time work so our divorce order just said we would each keep our own pension. Also people can now if they choose cash them at 55 (and pay the tax) which can be useful if you are trying to keep a house and pay the other person off although you cannot be forced to cash them at 55 (as the state pension is not a huge thing to live off at 67 or whatever your retirement aeg is).

Also do remember a pension sum is not the same as cash. if people cash it in at 55+ almost half over 75% of it goes in tax for a start. Secondly, if you leave it to draw at 65 or 67 annuities yield very little income indeed so it is not the same as a cash lump sum in the bank.

The main thing here is to find out both parties' debts and assets first and then make a sensible offer.

MiniCooperLover Tue 28-Feb-17 13:21:18

I would be worried he is encouraging her to sell the house and doesn't want to look at new houses. I think once the house is sold he's planning to take his share (hopefully just his share!) and run.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now