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How exactly does financial disclosure work ?

(31 Posts)
Fleecyslippers Tue 09-Apr-13 18:18:07

When Ex is a bullying, controlling idiot who has stripped everything away ?
Bank accounts emptied, cars 'sold' (Transferred into Ows name) conned out of a holiday property (OWs family posed as legit buyers) etc etc. The assets aren't huge but I have small children to bring up. So far, any attempts to ask him for reasonable proposals have resulted in a sneery rant about how he won't be 'giving' me anything. (I worked throughout the marriage apart from when he didn't allow me to)
Long history of abuse (Fact finding went in my favour) There are lots of small pension pots dotted around, which when combined, would at least provide a little stability.
But how on earth can he be forced to provide details ? Lying is second nature to him.
Am not even sure if I have the energy to go down the road if it simply means that HE has to provide the correct info (which he won't)

Collaborate Tue 09-Apr-13 20:05:53

If he won't disclose voluntarily you'll have to apply for a financial order in court.
The basic disclosure he must provide is in the Form E. Get your skates in, as the longer you wait, the more likely it will be that the last 12 months bank statements he'll have to supply won't include evidence of asset dissipation.

Fleecyslippers Tue 09-Apr-13 20:59:32

Thanks Collaborate - sorry to be dim, but does that essentially mean that he is simply ordered by the court to produce the information ? He's already lied about his criminal records and medical history (found out on both counts) I have absolutely no reason to believe that he will co operate in any way and am leaning more and more towards walking away - I think the costs will outweigh any outcome.
Thanks again.

Paigesunshine Tue 09-Apr-13 21:22:10

Hi
I am going through a divorce at the moment and so sorry to be so glum but my estrange husband had lots of pensions, bank accounts, investments but he did not declared them on his form E and in our fist court hearing he denied he had anymore but I had all the information of all of it and he was questioned by my solicitor but his solicitor still wrote he had nothing more to add. Before my second FDR he had a letter of deficiencies sent to his solicitor but he still ignored this and still never gave up to date statements on his pensions,investments etc. the judge granted me the orders to produce the relevant info but I know he won't produce and on thar note the judge said we are not having this FDR we are going to the final hearing. My point to you is do not give up think of your children he wants you to walk away as mine did thinking I was going to settle for as he said you and the kids should be grateful for what pennies I throw your way.
Be strong.
Think of your children they will give you strength as mine did.

prh47bridge Tue 09-Apr-13 23:11:23

Yes the court can order him to provide information. They can also set aside any asset disposals he has made in an attempt to reduce the amount he has to pay you.

Paigesunshine Wed 10-Apr-13 00:15:55

This is true but they only take this in to consideration when you go to the full and final.
As I was told by my barrister that in matrimonial law he is not lying he is being not quiet right with the truth when withholding information to me it is lying
In FDR hearings this is not taken into account you are trying to reach a settlement only at the full and final does all this come up in front of the judge and I have been told it does not sit well with the judge and he will make up his own mind as to what else he is lying about. Which he will lose as the judge will take this out of his share.

RedHelenB Wed 10-Apr-13 07:22:57

Do YOU know what assets you had during the marriage between you? Is the holiday property here or abroad? Do you know what it sold for?Is he paying maintenance for the children?

I suppose ultimately you have to weigh up whether the finances are such that it makes all the legal wrangling worthwhile once you've taken the legal costs away.

babybarrister Wed 10-Apr-13 21:13:10

Courts have lots of powers to seek disclosure against both an ex and against third parties directly eg banks etc - the real issue is whether it is worth pursuing - that I am afraid will always be an unknown

Xenia Thu 11-Apr-13 10:06:10

A man has been jailed recently for failing to provide disclosure although that is rare.

I would advise all women in mumsnet to know everything when they get married to man - have joint accounts, see each other's tax returns, pension statements, read the P60s of the other half, know about shares they have in a business, be much more interested in that than other aspects of marriage, dresses and nail varnish as it does pay off later if you have total knowledge and understanding before you get in too deep with any potential spouse.

babybarrister Thu 11-Apr-13 11:48:55

I agree - all spouses should know everything! I think there is a correlation between those spouses who know very little and those who then get divorced I am afraid to say - I you cannot talk about money it does not bode well

lostdad Thu 11-Apr-13 12:56:42

In short, detective work.

Your ex is obliged to submit a Form E detailing all assets which are taken into consideration. Getting rid of/hiding stuff doesn't work as both parties are usually obliged to submit bank statements, etc. for the previous 12 months (although I have known a court to order statements for several years back).

My other half deals with quite a few finance hearings (it comes of being a paralegal and an ex debt collector and she's in one today) and lying on Form E's is par for the course. She has been able to demonstrate on a number of occasions that there are big holes in forms where people have omitted/lied about things (`forgotten' pay slips when large bonuses have been paid, vastly undervalued/overvalued property prices, etc).

What usually happens is that another hearing is ordered and whoever is withholding information is ordered to come up with it.

With a little knowledge finance hearings are easier than contact ones, etc. as you're dealing with cold, hard cash. I really, really don't want to get a divorce from my other half for this very reason - she scares the hell out of me! shock

lostdad Thu 11-Apr-13 12:57:48

Not that she's getting anything...half of nothing is still nothing! grin

Xenia Thu 11-Apr-13 18:53:39

You might win the lottery tomorrow so it may well not be nothing.

As someone who has always loved tax, finances and the like these marriages where women (it is usually women) do not know the first thing about the person they had expected to live with forever, who have loads of secrets between them and do not even know what bank accounts and pensions he has is just amazing. How can they not know? Yet lots of couples are like that. I did boh of our tax returnsf or years. We had joint accounts. We were both happy to open the post of each other, no secrets. Lots of couples are very different.

I suspect some parents bring up daughters to be interested in nail varnish and dresses and expect them to live off male earnings so those girls go on to have no interest in money or tax or accounts and it certainly does them no favours when they end up single and/or divorcing.

Paigesunshine Mon 15-Apr-13 19:47:58

Hi all
I knew everything about my husbands finances pensions etc I did everything and can prove everything as I took photocopies of it all but still we have has 2 FDR hearings and he has court orders against him to hand the right documents in but he has not and no one does a thing the last FDR the judge said he was not hearing this FDR and wants to go to the final hearing asking my solicitor what doea this mean she replies this has never happened to me before. Therefore it seems that you can hold the information and even the court orders still cant make him do what he does not want to do.
He has 4 kids 1 has ASD and still he wants everything and expects us to live in a rented house on benifits while he lives like a king poor soul, so hard done by it is hard not to be bitter.
Yes it is a cruel world out there and my advice is before you file for divorce get all the proof you can get only photocopies because of presonal data protection because GOD you will need it as without proof you cannot do nothing.
If anyone can tell me why did the judge cancell my 2 FDR I would appreciate it.

ladymuckbeth Mon 15-Apr-13 21:57:22

I'd love to hear from others that this is not normal! Paige so sorry to hear of your experience. I am in the early stages of the kind of divorce that looks set to be problematic and I will be extremely surprised if H discloses. So far I have been told repeatedly that 'it all comes out in court' - please please let that be true!

MOSagain Tue 16-Apr-13 16:36:22

Over the years I had numerous clients whose ex's refused to provide full financial disclosure. Follow the process. Form A, Form E, 1st Appt, request for further information and if needs be, a penal notice. Have always got there in the end.

I have to say I'd be a bit unsure about a lawyer who 'let it go'

paige I don't really understand what you are saying about the DJ cancelling your 2 FDRs? Also, you have to be very careful about which documents you photocopy. There have been cases (I'm sure babybarrister or collaborate will help me out with the name) where parties have come rather unstuck when doing this.

Paigesunshine Tue 16-Apr-13 18:28:28

Hi, I use to do all the filing, open all letters, bank statements, tax returns I knew more about what was going on than him. I know what case you are talking about the one that the wife went into his husband computer and found investments he did not disclose but it was thrown out by the judge. But in my case all was opened I did not force draws, go into computers etc.
They have issued court orders but he does not comply with them, he was given a letter of deficiencies but my solicitor never had anything back nor the court. His solicitor repeats he has nothing further to add.
At the FDR hearing the judge asked what was going on my barrister told him and that was when he said we are not having this FDR we will go straight to the final hearing. That was when I asked my solicitor why and she replied I have never had this done before.
Everyone said it will all come out in court but I feel I have been hung out to dry.
What does the judge do in these cases as I cannot be alone , we'll I hope not.
Thanks Mosagain.

MOSagain Tue 16-Apr-13 18:46:08

If your Solicitor said 'I have never done this before' you really should be instructing a new solicitor. This is simply not acceptable. Have a look on the Resolution website and find an experienced family lawyer in your area. Perhaps if you say which area you are in one of the family lawyers on here could recommend someone

Paigesunshine Tue 16-Apr-13 18:58:54

Hi thank you Mosagain. I did go to another solicitor after my first hearing because I was not happy and she told me it would be too expensive to change now and it would be the barrister that would be doing all the work and she told me the barrister I had was good and would not let anything go so that was why I stayed with this solicitor. Is there ant point in changing solicitor if the barrister is going to do everything (is this true?) what will a new solicitor do I go to the full and final in June.
Do you know what it means?
I live in Sg12 area
Thanks again

iheartdusty Tue 16-Apr-13 21:55:57

the cancelled FDR means that the judge saw your ex was being such a git that it wasn't worth spending time on trying to get an agreement.

so instead of a consent order the judge will listen to and read all the evidence and will decide who gets what.

The judge may even 'attribute' money to your ex if s/he believes that he has assets he hasn't disclosed. Ideally it goes like this; ex says "I am poor, I have nothing" - your barrister or you say " but we have asked 50 time for these bank statements, and just 2 years ago ex was running a business with ££££ turnover, that money hasn't evaporated, ex must be hiding something" - judge says "mr ex you are wasting everyone' time, I am going to assume you have ££££ stashed away so you won't be needing anything out of the equity in the house".

but it is far better to do as MOSagain says - follow the process - get orders and penal notices so that you do know what's available for distribution.

MOSagain Wed 17-Apr-13 14:21:00

If you and the solicitor are happy with the barrister then I'd stay put. It will of course cost more if you change solicitiors now as the new one will need to get up to speed.

The fact you have a good barrister is important. He/she will not let things like your H's non disclosure go. If he continues to refuse to provide disclosure then the Courts will draw adverse inferences from this. If you have a good barrister, then keep them as it would be difficult to get another good one this close to the hearing.

Paigesunshine Wed 17-Apr-13 17:58:06

Hi all, thank you, I feel a little better talking about it
I hope that the judge see through him. But he still has not disclosed everything, not even for the second FDR, his pensions etc was not up to date in fact some where several years out of date but no papers handed in.
Yes the barrister I have is very out spoken she seems that she has a no nonsense attitude which I find good as his barrister is old public school and very pompous.
Once again thank you for all your advice it was very helpful and put my mind at rest. I speak to my solicitor tomorrow.

MOSagain Wed 17-Apr-13 18:05:21

Paige, sounds like you are very lucky with your barrister. That is just what you need, a no nonsense attitude as opposed to an old fart wink

KateDillington Thu 18-Apr-13 12:19:13

Well I have just had DHs Form E back and he has not enclosed his company accounts. Just says he has made the same as my salary (despite earning 3 x my salary until we separated 18 months ago and siphoned it all into a company).

It's so depressing. Seeing a solicitor next week on a pay as you go basis to help with my questions. Can I ask for part year company accounts or company bank account details?

McKenzie13 Thu 18-Apr-13 21:03:36

Financial disclosure always presents a problem and tactics like these I see regularly. Without it, however, it is impossible to predict if any offer is equitable.

Depending on how far down the line you've gone- you would have received the Form E. On that you will know what's disclosed and what's not. In your response to that Form E you should state exaclty what you'd like for him to disclose. The fact that he's suddenly changed things into somone else's name just doesn't cut it, especially if you suggest to the court that he's negating his financial responsibility by doing so.

Once he's been ordered to produce the aformentioned items one can see the date in which he transferred liability into a 3rd party's name, thus proving your point.

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