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Separation basics - kids and money.

(5 Posts)
JumpRope Sun 17-Aug-14 22:39:06

DH and I live in a mortgaged £1m home, he earns a lot a year, he has pensions, savings, investments, assets etc. I'm used to not working.

Unfortunately, there has been dv.

We have 2 dcs in private schools. I've been sahm since they were born.

Dh is refusing to discuss child custody. I have a nagging fear he may go for sole custody, using the fact that I've had some depression/anxiety, but I am being successfully treated, and all agree I'm a good mum.

I want what's best for dcs and for dh to have a good relationship with them. However, I dont think dh will give up his job or reduce his very long hours, as that would mean not affording private schools and that is important to him. So he'd be reliant on outside childcare apart from at weekends.

I also don't want to take dh "to the cleaners" which is his fears, and get a load of his cash. I would be happy to work, but would want a job that was local and allowed me to care for the kids and not rely on childcare.

In cases like this, what is the 'norm'. Is it joint custody? I've heard of fathers getting the children every other weekend - is that an example of a joint custody arrangement?

Sorry, a confusing post. But I am anxious the children don't have to 'live' with him 50/50 when he wouldn't be there much of the time. And also wondering about the money sit.

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 18-Aug-14 07:54:09

Please get legal advice as you are well beyond the normal. There maybe a case as your H is a really high earner and you ave up work to support him for spousal maintenance plus discussions need to be had about school fees etc.

Greengrow Mon 18-Aug-14 09:26:01

A solicitor might tell you to get a non molestation order to exclude him from the family home now on the grounds of the violence although if it s mild I am not sure I morally agree with that. It might however be the best advice as then you have possession of teh children and house. He should also then pay interim maintenance until you reach agreement on final finances.

Our court order says I pay all the school fees whoever the children live with as I earn 10x more than their father. However I think it is a bit unfair to say if a parent works they cannot have the children with them. I work full time and have the children 365 days a year (their father's choice not mine) and when they were smaller I paid for a nanny including when I was abroad on business trips. You can be a good and resident parent even if you work full time. In fact if they were with him more you and he could share a nanny and both work full time. You probably want to work as they get older anyway as it will be more expensive to keep two homes between you rather than one.

It is unlikely the children will live with him and you move out and work full time to support them in part but certainly sensible to see a solicitor.
Put yourself in his shoes =- would you like to see them only every other weekend? Thought not so why force that on the other parent?

Child arrangements work best when agreed between the couple and financial issues.

What is the equity in the house? The fact it is worth £1m is irrelevant. If you have £20k equity in it that is very different from if you have £1m equity in it and what other savings do you both have?

the starting point is split debts and savings/house equity down the middle, have a clean break and both go off and earn your own livings with the higher earner paying all the school fees I would say in this case (so about 20% of net after tax earnings for the children if they mostly live with you). Pension splitting orders are possible - but remember you and he only get the pension money when you are 65 or 67 or whatever age the pension is drawn.

If 50% each and a clean break will not work as it is not enough to house the children or keep you because youc annot get any kind of part or full time job then you may get maintenance plus half the capital for a period until you can retrain or find a job although the courts prefer adults to work and keep themselves. That type of maintenance for you not the children will stop if you move a man in or remarry.

Once you know your legal position (and I do recommend your paying for one hour of a very good family lawyers' advice - I used Withers) then talk to your husband about it. there is no point wasting all the spare money on solicitors when at the end of the day you both need to reach agreement on where the children live, how capital is divided, maintenance for the children and you etc.

Prettybunting Mon 18-Aug-14 14:21:33

I appreciate that you do not wish to take him to the cleaners, but while you have been a sahm he has been building a career, which you haven't - due to looking after his children. You are entitled to a share, he may have been the one in the workplace, but you have been at home caring for the family also.

You need a solicitor, do you have any proof of the DV for legal aid, if you have no funds of your own right now?

I.e custody - have you tried discussing it with him, Rather than guessing? If he is working such a demanding job then he won't have much time for the children will he? Yes he could pay for childcare as above, but the children are going to have so many changes to go through, they would benefit from a familiar face there more often than not.

It sounds like there is more money in your family than most, so please seek professional help as you are entitled to something, and so are the children (school funding etc)

PotteringAlong Mon 18-Aug-14 14:32:55

What job are you going to get that allows you not to use childcare?

I think you need to pay for a solicitors advice, but I also think you need to be a bit more realistic about the outcome.

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