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Divorce settlement, legal entitlement vs moral entitlement

(42 Posts)
RockPaperCut Thu 11-May-17 10:20:54

I have huge amounts of guilt over receiving money from stbxh. In my mind it is still very much his and he's been very good throughout the relationship of enforcing that idea. I had to ask for money, for items for the children, I often went without because I felt humiliated having to ask for xyz etc. You get the idea.

On one hand my solicitor is advising that every asset is included into the marrital pot, including a fairly substantial inheritance as the money was pooled within the marriage. He of course wants to reduce his liability as much as possible towards the dc and I.

So the question is would you go for half of everything or settle for far less, quickly, have lesser standard of living, barely managing to make ends meet whilst he keeps his lifestyle, assets etc.

JaxingJump Thu 11-May-17 10:23:22

Half of everything. It's family money and you are the equal head of that family.

What did he think marriage and having a family was! It's not about the money, it's about he equality. If the family assets were only £40k you'd still be entitled to half.

peukpokicuzo Thu 11-May-17 10:25:31

The guilt you feel is due to the emotional and financial abuse you have suffered. The money and assets are not and were never his sole property. Marriage means two people agreeing to share everything in common. You have a moral and legal right to half of the assets. Your children have a moral and legal right to have you being sufficiently supported that they don't grow up in poverty rather than their dick of a dad keeping all the assets himself.

Well done for getting out. Stay strong.

RockPaperCut Thu 11-May-17 10:51:11

If it went 60/30 in my favour on half the assets i'd stand to get a little over 500k which would house us just fine. He wants to settle for 450k, no spousal support and no school fees. The entire pot including these other assets are 1.6 mil. Not sure what to do. I just want out and I'm happy to settle for less, I think.

JaxingJump Thu 11-May-17 10:56:02

Rock, that's fine if your children don't need the fees and you can work and support the family yourself from now on. Can you do that??

bluebell2017 Thu 11-May-17 11:00:15

Hi. You seem to be in an eerily similar position to me, although I haven't actually started any proceedings as yet.

I completely understand what you mean about the guilt, as it has, in large part, been guilt about potentially claiming a large share of dh's assets that has stopped me from taking any steps to end our marriage, even tough I have been unhappy for years.

I guess the way to look at it is to recognise that the money is not just for you, it is for the children as well. There is a difference between taking your stbxh to the cleaners and getting what is fair. What does your solicitor say?

AbbieLexie Thu 11-May-17 11:00:27

Please don't settle. That was my mistake. Take all you are entitled to. It's the children's future.
Don't believe a word he says. My mistake was I believed he would do what was morally right. Tutors and uni fees - no help was given. It was a huge struggle. Only on my feet enough to have a holiday longer than a weekend twice a year in the last 2 years.
Exh now has a new partner and will where everything is left to new partner and her daughter. This information has been shared with my daughter to prepare her.
Take everything and you can always ring fence it for your children's future.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Thu 11-May-17 11:02:02

Morally right is ensuring your children have enough.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Thu 11-May-17 11:02:42

Morally right is ensuring your children have enough.

mylaptopismylapdog Thu 11-May-17 11:21:30

Sorry sounds like you've had a very tough time and that his offer is just a continuation of the abuse. You should go for half, the assets are joint not solely his and he can afford to make sure not only you but his children have a financially secure future and both morally and legally he should do so. Have you contacted Women's see if there is any advice or counselling for people in your situation as you are a victim of abuse? Have you taken legal advice? Well done for getting out you deserve better.

RockPaperCut Thu 11-May-17 11:37:01

Solicitor advises to include the assets from his inheritance.

Bluebell flowers. I wouldn't stick around longer than necessary. The guilt is immense but at the same time stbx has benefitted hugely, from my staying at home for 6 years looking after the house and children with minimal support. That has to count for something.

The problem is having had 6 years out of work has really put me in a bad position. I've struggled to find full time employment, so I'm working part time as a housekeeper around the dc. Youngest dc doesn't start school until September 2018 so I have at least a year to retrain. I'm reliant on benefits and money will be extremely tight until I am able to work full time again. So yes you're right, morally I should get everything I'm entitled to. Gahhh...I can just hear the outlaws gossiping already.

Hermonie2016 Thu 11-May-17 14:16:09

Your children are young and it will do them no favours to worry that mum doesn't have enough money.Children suffer if mum is super stressed and will question why lifestyles so different.
He would be crazy to offer 450k if you wanted 500k (in a pot of £1.6m) as a judge may award more.

RockPaperCut Thu 11-May-17 15:56:07

Thanks for the concern. Yes, I've been in touch with women's aid previously. My situation is one where outwardly we have had a very good standard of living, I just couldn't leave for a refuge with the dc in the end, my solicitor advised against it. I can kind of see the light at the end of the tunnel, well certainly we won't be living together in a matter of weeks, which is a huge relief.

I'm trying not to think about lifestyles for the moment. That's certainly one thing I will never be able to compete with, unless I land a job with a 6 figure salary next week. He will always be better off, he is coming into some more large sums next year so I hope he will be keen to settle before then.

peukpokicuzo Thu 11-May-17 20:10:41

The pot is £1.6m You should be expecting £800k, plus full spousal support until the littlest starts school, and ongoing child maintenance. He does not get to opt out of his responsibilities. Speak to women's aid - they have some resources to help survivors of financial and emotional abuse to learn to overcome the instinct you have learned to squash your own needs and rights.

Lanaorana2 Thu 11-May-17 20:12:36

Don't get confused between what you want and what the children need - two different things entirely.

Wineandcoffee Thu 11-May-17 20:17:57

I took less than I was entitled to because I coulldn't face the battle that would have ensued - it was still enough to buy a house outright but, 10 years later, it does still annoy me occasionally that he and OW have retired and live part of the year abroad while I'm still working full time most of the time I'm just glad I'm not married to him

LondonSouth28 Thu 11-May-17 20:26:35

So you have two children to support and once he settles the divorce settlement he will make getting any further money (i.e. School fees, clothes etc) super hard. You say he made it hard when you were married - imagine how hard it will be when he is no longer married to you?! Take and get as much as you can - FOR YOUR CHILDRENS FUTURE! You would be morally wrong to not seek the best settlement possible for your children, x

RockPaperCut Thu 11-May-17 20:34:18

Probably stupid of me, but I've just given him a heads up on what the solicitor has advised and he is not happy. He's still harping on about 450k being more than adequate.

LadyMonicaBaddingham Thu 11-May-17 20:44:50

Talk only via your solicitors regarding any financial settlement. Don't muddy the waters, only allow your STBEXH to attempt to do so... This money is for YOUR CHILDREN. Always remember that...

JaxingJump Thu 11-May-17 20:54:35

Stay away from him. This is a business transaction.

I think it's disgusting he's not willing to give you half of what will leave him with a lot of money, and the capacity to earn lots more and another big inheritance coming his way. It's his children he's taking it away from.

Please do this right, for your kids sake.

tomatoplantproject Thu 11-May-17 21:17:33

If he is due to come into another lump of money next year then he can well afford for you to have half of the family assets now.

So you and your children can be properly housed
So you can retrain and have the ability to take on a better paid job in the long term
So you are not dependent on the state
So your children don't have to grow up going from luxury to poverty when they switch between parents.

Can you look upon the inherited money as lucky money rather than earned? He was lucky he was born into a wealthy family, and you in turn have a bit of fortune in that you can benefit from that luck. He didn't create anything, he didn't work backbreaking long hours, he hasn't built up a business which employs many others.

nigelsbigface Thu 11-May-17 22:43:28

Yes I was told quite often what my stbexh thought was adequate.
And I was also accepting of that at first.
But I'm glad I looked into it further as a result of some fairly hefty lies I discovered he had told about something else- as what I was going to agree to would have left me in an awful financial position.
My advice would be to try and take emotion out of it.Think about the rest of your life and those of your kids and of what you have put in to the marriage.You are entitled to half and that's what you should stick to.

RockPaperCut Thu 11-May-17 23:24:16

He is an arse that's for sure. His reasoning...if I allowed him 50/50 shared care then dc's needs would be met by him. He forgets that he would still need to provide adequate housing for the time dc spent with me. He is a tool.

I would leave discussions to our respective solicitors but he/they have refused to respond because he doesn't want to run up legal costs. He wants complete control of the process but time is running out, without an agreement we're heading to court. He's now backtracked on school fees, again ffs. I'm so flipping tired of fighting for the dc needs to be met. I hate him with every bone in my body. You're all right, it's better it's dealt with now than having to go cap in hand asking for money later.

tomatoplantproject Fri 12-May-17 07:36:39

I didn't make it to court but I understand the starting point of court is 50/50. For any marriage that is over 5 years and with 50/50 residency then unless he can successfully argue otherwise you will be awarded this.

He should therefore be doing everything to keep this out of court and begging you to take a settlement. I would let it all run its course and let it go to court if I were you. I would also be leaning on my solicitor and taking his/her advice, and if you don't trust that advice find another one.

nigelsbigface Fri 12-May-17 11:51:20

Have you done mediation?
Although again in my case it failed as h 'didn't rate' the skills of the mediator (i.e. She didn't agree with everything he said and he didn't like the process as he wasn't able to charm her like he does most other people).
We eventually worked out our agreement between ourselves after I took advice from the solicitor about what was reasonable to ask for.(I still asked for less than that advised but far more that what h initially proposed and thought was reasonable). It was a horrible process and I still feel guilty despite asking for less than what I could have (according to legal precedence)-it still felt grabby. But you have to think of your future and that of the kids.
H also reasoned that he would be able to afford to buy them anything big they needed (in the case of his Initial proposal)so they wouldn't miss out.That was true and he would have done-in his case I don't doubt it.But that would be unfair on me always being the 'poor parent' to his Disney dad when we both worked hard to achieve what we did jointly in the marriage.

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