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How much should I be getting

(18 Posts)
TJEckleburg Wed 15-Feb-17 23:43:27

Background: dh and I married for 20 years, 2 kids, 12 and 14. I gave up decent career after dc2, he has always been a very high earner (£1m+last two years due to option payouts, £400kin normal year). He semi retired 6 months ago and plan, agreed by us both a along time ago was that he would go back to consultancy role earning approx £150k. We have built up considerable assets over the years.
We've also it turned out had a complete sham of a marriage - I have done everything at home for years, managed house, finances, relationship, because he was busy and stressed with work. I put up with it, because he was going to reture and everything would be lovely. And of course it wasn't. Turns out he wasn't busy and stressed, he was an emotionally illiterate self obsessed cockwomble.

So we are divorcing. doing it quickly and collaboratively. I am sorting all finances (because he doesn't actually have a clue what we are worth). There is plenty of money to go round.

But he has a history of getting what he wants. And I don't know where the kick ass woman I was before has gone - I seem to give in to what he wants for an easy life. And I've done it so often that I'm not even sure if I'm doing it anymore. He's already bought a house. A very expensive one. Which I thought was too big for him but got told I was being unreasonable (I'm staying in family home, which is worth more than his house, but only because I still have kids and dogs and chickens, when all are left/dead I shall be seriously downsizing.

So with his house purchase and splitting pensions in most tax advantageous way, and needing to keep ISA's etc in right names and have a school fees fund, if I take every penny of investments we have, the asset split is 54% to me and 46% to him. And I have no idea whather that is fair or not. And my lawyer, whilst lovely, is bound by the fact we are doing this collaboratively and so can't go rottweiler on him. And I do want to do this nicely. But I also don't want to be a mug and come out with significantly less than I could get if I went to court.

So how much should I expect? Am I settling for less than I should?

(And please can you not post if all you are going to say is get a job myself - I don't want to, never planned on doing, that was joint decision. I supported his career hugely, doing all the wifework and helping significantly with his professional endeavours as well as we used to be in same industry. I do lots of political and voluntary stuff and don't see why all my life plans should change because my husband is a tosser)

TheNaze73 Thu 16-Feb-17 18:40:18

50/50 split sounds fair to me, with no child maintenance, if you're splitting the children equally?
Why can't he give up work completely if he likes & do political & voluntary stuff like yourself?

DrowningSeas Thu 16-Feb-17 18:45:32

50/50 why do either of you deserve more than the other?

Amaried Thu 16-Feb-17 18:46:50

50.50 fair to me

Canlifegetbetter Thu 16-Feb-17 18:54:02

It's about your needs rather than equal split. So if you can hang on to the house then it covers you and your children's needs.Will you have income and suitable pension provision?

Work out what you need and base it on that.
Courts start will a 50:50 basis and only change the equation if your needs mean you needed extra capital.

PaterPower Thu 16-Feb-17 19:00:19

Generally splits that are less balanced are for where there aren't enough assets to provide a home for the kids if divided 50:50.

You're not in that position and it sounds like you're going to be able to support yourself comfortably without needing to take paid employment, which is not a position the majority of women (or men) find themselves in on divorce.

I'm interested in why you feel you should get anything more than half? If his only "sins" are that he's emotionally illiterate and a "cockwomble" (presumably that's not a euphemism for he's cheated on you?) and was, I'd assume, always like this, you're pretty lucky he's being so laid back with the post-split finances.

wherearemymarbles Thu 16-Feb-17 19:23:10

Sounds fair.
You could go to court and each engage £700 per hour divorce lawyers and end up a better split and less money!

noego Thu 16-Feb-17 19:32:40

Push for 60/40 but don't go below what you have agreed. Especially if kids stopping with you.

TJEckleburg Thu 16-Feb-17 19:40:50

Actually there are significant sins. But that doesn't make any difference in a divorce settlement. What does make a difference is that the sacrifice of my career 13 years ago (which happened because he refused to take any responsibility for children/domestic duties even though pre pregnancy he'd promised too) means that I currently have the capacity to earn less that £30k a year for full time work , and he can very easily earn £300k. And we are not splitting kids 50:50 - his original offer was to have them one night a week and the occasional weekend.

And if I did go to court I would get more, because a court would expect us both to work full time and would take into account our different earning capacity. I don't really want him to have to do that- and for clarity he is very happy working in a part time role - he greatly enjoys his job. And if it was "needs" I'd get more as my needs would be calculated based on maintenance of previous lifestyle, which was a far more extravagant lifestyle than I intend to have in the future

wherearemymarbles Thu 16-Feb-17 19:54:57

A court might not take kindly your lack of interest in working.
Also he has to pay maintenance which is separate from splitting assests.
Long story short what you get in court depends far more on the judge than lawyers care to admit. Plus if he says fuck it, im fully retired...

If your mot happy go to court and spend £200,000 on legal fees!

TJEckleburg Thu 16-Feb-17 19:58:51

No I know- he's being fair in not expecting me to work, I'm being fair in not expecting him to work more than the very part time consultancy job we had always planned for him to do at this stage in life which he is very happy to continue with. His retirement by the way is very early - he's only 5 years older than me.

TJEckleburg Thu 16-Feb-17 20:00:49

Oh and we are not doing spousal maintenance but clean break.

noego Thu 16-Feb-17 20:01:53

But he has earning potential, no matter what he says now.

wherearemymarbles Thu 16-Feb-17 20:12:57

Its a tricky one. I if you go down the court route is je the type of person to make it all as long difficult and expensive as possible?

Of course he work ft again but a judge cant force him to and cant really factor that into a settlement

AyeAmarok Thu 16-Feb-17 20:22:59

But he has earning potential, no matter what he says now.

But so does OP. Certainly the ability to support herself if she has a mortgage-free house, plus child maintenance.

If you can live without working by living off half your assets then fine. But I don't see why he should have to forfeit more than half the assets so you never have to work and he does.

Liara Thu 16-Feb-17 20:29:49

I think 50/50 is fair in this situation, without spousal maintenance, but with the children's schooling etc. provided for already or paid for by him. I assume you would be able to make those assets generate enough income to live reasonably?

PaterPower Thu 16-Feb-17 22:54:49

"What does make a difference is that the sacrifice of my career 13 years ago (which happened because he refused to take any responsibility for children/domestic duties even though pre pregnancy he'd promised too)"

Really? You said in your op that it was a joint decision - you never want/wanted to work again! Possibly best to straighten that one out before you rely on it in court.

And even if it was all down to him reneging on promises to coparent, the facetious bit of me would point out that you still went on to have a second dc in reasonably short order despite the experience of him not following through on the first.

Then I'd point out that nannies and/or other high quality childcare arrangements are readily available - particularly for high achievers like you and stbxh, so you could have stuck two fingers up at him 5-6 years ago and gone back to work to climb the corporate ladder again, had that actually been anything you wanted.

You asked for opinions. My opinion is that if 50:50 allows you to keep the large house you're in, continue the last 13 years of staying out of paid work and allows him to semi-retire then you're being unreasonable to push for a bigger cut. As pp have pointed out, if you take this to Court you can't be sure you'd actually do any better - but you would (both) definitely be worse off after paying the sharks legal fees involved in a contested settlement.

Holly3434 Fri 17-Feb-17 09:14:33

He sounds very reasonable, he's giving you more than 50 percent, and this is money he earnt yes you stayed at home but he still allowed you to live very comfortably the court's would look in his favour over this. Doesn't sound like he's been that bad to be honest

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