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I really need help with this one.

(23 Posts)
sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 09:17:46

Posted in legal but no answers yet.

Try to keep it brief. Exh and I have been split a while. However due to massive rent arrears I am unable to take him off the tenancy of our HA property. Arrears run up by him I might add. I was a SAHM and wasn't earning.

I went away for the weekend and while I was away he stayed in the home and then took some Electrical items including a games console that was ds's birthday present shock. He says he paid for them so it is his right to do what he wants with them. He says ds does not even use them, not true, one was a dvd player and ds uses it all the time. Does not use the games console really but this was a thing that we bought to help him with his co-ordination, he has special needs but he has not shown any interest in it yet.

He says he has only pawned them and will get them back next week.

I am desperate to get him off the tenancy. Told him I will change the locks but he said he will just go to the HA and will take legal action if I do.

I need some legal and practical advice. He tells me he is too poor to keep living where he is living and is going to buy a tent and live in that hmm on a local camp site. I think he would too. How bad is this going to make me look to his kids and family and friends?

The HA won't do anything btw because of the rent arrears.

LadyOfWaffle Tue 28-Jul-09 09:20:48

Not sure he can legally take something that was a gift... I'd change the locks anyway, if HA ask say you lost the key and just don't give ex one. I doubt he will take it further.

whomovedmychocolate Tue 28-Jul-09 09:24:08

Okay....tough one.

First of all what are your housing options? Could you apply to a different housing association. If I was in your shoes I would visit the housing association and say 'I have no money, here is my income, can we come to an arrangement for my share of the debt?'

Second, change the bloody locks - don't worry about it - he has no legal leg to stand on if he has left the property and asserts no claim to it. I would suggest you get some extra security locks rather than changing the locks - for example the addition of bolts which lock from the outside as well as the inside (fairly easy to fit). That way you are enhancing security rather than changing it.

Personally I would do that first so you feel secure. Then go to the HA and ask them to meet with you to discuss what to do next. Don't talk to the receptionist, ask to speak to someone who deals with rent arrears.

More soon, dealing with annoyed baby!

RealityIsHavingBumsex Tue 28-Jul-09 09:26:53

Message withdrawn

RealityIsHavingBumsex Tue 28-Jul-09 09:28:16

Message withdrawn

sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 09:28:45

WMMC - Thanks, I am already paying off the arrears and have been for over a year now. I am very committed to doing so and have never missed. I want nothing more than to be free of this so I can either exchange properties or be re-housed on the grounds of ds's SN. Nothing can happen till these arrears are paid off. I am willing to take on the full amount if necessary to get rid of him.

Good idea about adding extra bolts. Not alot he can do about that.

whomovedmychocolate Tue 28-Jul-09 09:33:20

Go see another housing association - I would be thinking about a fresh start if I were you - your ex sounds like a shithead (sorry!)

Have you considered a legal separation order?

sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 09:40:13

Thanks Reality didn't see your post when I posted. Helpful to hear from someone in a similar position. I only wish my arrears were as small as yours sad.

WMMC I can't move with these arrears, no-one would touch me with a barge pole. I have to keep some security for my dc. I could never afford to rent privately where I live and my ds is very settled in his school. We need to stay here at present. I am seeking divorce now, have an appointment on Wednesday and apparently will be able to go to Family Court to have him taken off the tenancy, they can make this decision even with the arrears apparently. This is just such a unbelievably lengthy and gruelling process. I am knackered just thinking about it.

As for the tent thing, I do actually know he is talking crap when he says he can't afford to live anywhere else and pay child support, he is greedy, he just doesn't want to pay rent somewhere else. He still believes he is entitled to live in our flat, despite the fact that he was unfaithful unlimited times, was verbally and sometimes physically abusive and is an alcoholic. He says he never did anything to the kids, only me so why should he live apart from them?

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 09:44:04

you should really contact shelter england - you will be on hold for a while - but they can give you a definate answer.

depending on how the relationship is - i might consider phoning the police regarding theft.

please ring shelter


Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 09:49:23

if he is so skint and such a low life that he will take your childrens toy to pawn - then i might be tempted to offer him money to relent his hold on the tenancy agreement if you agree to take on all the debt

probably illegal - but i would do it.

ring shelter - for a proper legal view

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 09:51:36


did you report the abuse at any point?

if you tell the landlord - he will have breached the terma and conditions of his tenancy by using domestic violence.

sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 09:53:24

Thanks Cvstard0 I think he would do that, not even for money, just to get away scott free from having to pay the debt. I don't have any problem with taking on the debt, even though it is massive.

Will ring Shelter now.

sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 09:54:33

The police were called twice so there would probably be a record of that. I didn't press charges though because they said if they had to come a third time then they would have to tell SS and they would become involved, so I never called them again, even though it happened a couple of times after that.

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 09:56:17

worth ringing your HA to tell them that there was a history of abuse - there should be a record as the police were called twice ( can you remember the dates?) and now you feel intimidated because he demands access as and when and you are becomming increasingly concerned for your secourity.

sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 09:56:44

Just looked at the website and we have an assured tenancy, reasons for eviction include being violent towards your partner and she/he has to leave. I only left for a couple of weeks though and he has left now. I need to phone them and get more info. Just dressing and breakfasting kids so will do it as soon as I have done that.

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 10:09:45


sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 13:42:51

Still trying. No telephone queuing, just keeps telling me to call back in a few moments. Will keep trying though.

He reckons he is not a scumbag because he paid for the items so technically they belong to him and the kids will get them back next week. I don't want to call the police, was trying to keep things amicable. Will see what happens next week and whether the stuff is returned, not a lot I can do if it isn't.

How can someone do something like that and not be aware of the moral implications of it? I think he must have some kind of personality disorder. When I asked him how he thought his kids might react when they are older and understand what he did he said he would explain to them and he knows they wouldn't mind helping him out!

Tortington Tue 28-Jul-09 15:10:55


sunfleurs Tue 28-Jul-09 20:33:23

No. Not even a queuing system so can't be on hold. Very frustrating. Will try again tommorrow. Seeing solicitor re starting divorce proceedings tommorrow as well.

Just had a huge "discussion" where he told me all the reasons this marriage didn't work, my fault of course and said I am ending it for myself and not considering the kids. He is a drunk, who leaves the gas on pouring into the house when pissed. He drank up to 10 cans a night, stayed out for days at a time, is verbally and physically abusive and was chronically unfaithful to me with prostitutes and anyone he could meet really. He regularly disappeared for days at a time. But it is all my fault and I am not giving him a chance for the sake of my dc. I am just dwelling on the bad stuff. Apparently he has a personality disorder and he needs help with that now. This is the reason for all his behaviours. I should be helping him as his wife.

Please someone give me some words of encouragement because I am absolutely exhausted and terrified that he is right and I drove him to it all because he was so nice when I met him.

stillkissingfrogs Tue 28-Jul-09 21:22:56

You didnt drive him to anything, as far as practicalities go there are some options and you need speak to your housing officer.

Your partner will have joint rights to occupy the premises due to the tenancy you have however your HO will not be aware at this stage of the dv side.

His right to occupy can be removed by him signing assignment papers which is unkiely to happen or be agreed whilst the arrears are in place. Your right to occupy can also be made by way of an occupancy order which will be made in court.

It cant really be forced at this stage by the HA, they can use the clause of the tenancy but this will be dependant on the evidence they can show regarding the dv which always goes dramatically under reported. But this is why i say you need to disclose matters to the HA in confidence so they can advise you of the best way forward for you.

Your HO should be able to refer you across to the local Housing Needs Team for an assessment of priority need (if they cant help you directly), some HA's once you are on the Housing List will accept you if the arrears are small and you are keeping to an agreement repay.

If you are accepted by another HA you could end the joint tenancy and have a fresh start with your own.

Housing Law is a complex area and i could waffle on all night long but basically if you have a good housing officer they will be a great help in advising you.

mpuddleduck Tue 28-Jul-09 22:00:58

sunfleurs, Iam sure you didn't drive him to it.
I too seperated from my H in May, following a DV incident in February, which this time happened to be in front of my elder children, which I can't forgive him for. He is full of verbal remorse, but when things get heated it is still all my fault.

But when I think about it, the tendency to be violent has always been there, even before we were married he threw a glass at me because I said I thought he had had enough to drink, in front of his parents, who blamed a passing cat knocking the glass off the wall. Our first house had numerous holes in the walls and doors where he punched them.

I still struggle with the same issue, but I'm sure you didn't drive him to it, some men just seem to be made that way.sad

Good luck with your housing. Iam afraid I know nothing about it so cant help, but wanted to offer a few words of encouragement.

You sound like you have things worked out, I hope I will be able to follow your example, and wish you lots of strength and peace for the future.

SolidGoldBrass Tue 28-Jul-09 22:05:39

You didn;t drive him to it. He's a knobber. Just hold very tight onto that thought. He's a KNOBBER and responsible for his own behaviour - he chose to be abusive to you. Contact WOmena's Aid and/or the police domestic violence unit, say he is stealing things from the house and intimidating you and you want to keep him out.

sunfleurs Wed 29-Jul-09 09:33:17

stillkissingfrogs, thanks that is really helpful advice. Will make a proper appointment with my area housing officer rather than ranting at some faceless person down the phone. I think it entirely possible that he would take on the full debt if it mean't he could be back here. I could propose this to them. I have found out that the account was already in arrears when they put me onto it as a joint tenant. As far as I am aware this is illegal and I shouldn't even be on it anyway because of this. I would be more than happy to move but have to stay in area because of ds's school etc.

mpuddleduck I think it will take a long time for me to stop thinking that I caused it tbh, I am not the easiest person to get on with. Saying that though, everyone including his sisters and mother say they do not know how I have put up with him all these years and while they are sad we are not together they see that I did everything I could to make it work. He starts nearly every time I see him and I always get sucked into trying to justify myself for leaving and trying to get him to understand why his behaviour was intolerable. When I brought up gas incidents and the fact that he used to leave the front door open because he was too drunk to lock up on numerous occasions and the safety issues of this seeing as we live in an inner city area, he said "well you don't have any regard for the kids safety either, you never tighten up the window locks properly" shock. What can you do with a man like this? and why do I keep getting sucked into discussion.

Any advice from anyone on not getting sucked in or provoked would be gratefully received.

Just starting my vigil to get through to Shelter again. I would like to make an appointment with my HA armed with the facts.

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