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Consent Orders Advice

Consent Orders

Cream Soda - Accordion
  • Full Question

     

    My husband has lived with his new partner since around February 2006. I am still living on my own with our 7yr old daughter (who spends 2/3 nights a week with my husband).
    My husband earns c£40k per year, I earn £21k per year. (His income has been up and down throughout our relationship – for a period of about 2 years I was the higher earner).

    Throughout our relationship, we have always had separate bank accounts and have always split all outgoings 50/50, e.g. I would make the mortgage payments, insurance etc., he would pay the bills, buy the food etc. His pension payments were part of his outgoings.
    I never had a pension of my own.

    When we separated, we sold the house for £185,000, leaving c£58,000 profit. My ex took £25,000, and I took c£33,000 plus most of the contents (less estate agent /solicitors fees etc). to enable me to buy a decent house in the same area for me and our daughter.
    I receive £400 a month from my husband for my daughter (nothing directly to me, although without the £400 a month I wouldn’t be able to keep up with the mortgage payments).

    My husband has arranged the divorce himself. However, he has emailed me a ‘Divorce Online Clean Break Consent Order Fact Finder’. As I haven’t completed it he has asked me for the value of my house, what my outstanding mortgage is, and the value of any other assets (a car c£3K).
    His intention is to complete the form himself, including his pension details I assume!, and he tells me it will be sent to a solicitor to be drawn up.

    My questions are . . . can he state on the form that the larger proportion I received from the house sale was to offset my share of his pension? At the time he told me he was happy with less than half, to enable me to afford to buy somewhere reasonable for his daughter to live.
    Should I be contacting a solicitor? If so, at what stage? We have remained friends over the last 2 years, but I’m becoming a little wary. Will anything stand before I have seen an official copy of the Consent Order?
     

    Answer -
     

    It seems that your Husband is trying to finalise matters to ensure that neither of you have any claims against the other at any stage in the future. It does not seem that he is trying to claim anything at the moment and he is trying to ensure that neither of you can do so in the future. This is extremely sensible where matters were dealt with at the time of separation and enables both of you to move on.
     

    As far as documentation is concerned, the Courts require to know the exact financial circumstances of you both at the time of making the order to ensure that the agreement reached is a fair one.

    I would advise you to seek your own independent advice, once you have got the forms from him to sign, so that you can be sure that the order as drafted is what you have agreed between you.

  • Full question-
     

    Background synopsis
     

    DIY divorce absolute granted 2005. Married in 1991. 13 years of marriage. One child born 1994.
    On divorce we owned jointly 2 houses both valued at £99k we sold one to pay off the mortgage and charges on that property and joint debt.

    Ex stayed in 2nd property still in joint names I left that property in Jul 2006.
    He pays £400 maintenance by verbal agreement for his son.
    His net salary is £2000 per month
    Plus RAF Pension in the region of £800.
    His final rank at retirement was SGT, He was in the RAF for his final 3 years during our marriage.
     

    I have 3 questions : What financial settlement am I entitled to? I think it is 3/22 of his pension and 50% equity of the property.
    How long do I have to claim this since my divorce?
    Is the maintenance level he is paying correct, should it be less or more?
     

    Answer-

     

    The child maintenance for your son is set at about the right level from what you have said. Child Support Agency rates are currently 15% of income net of tax and nic only for one child which would be £420 per month approximately. An allowance is made if a child stays with an absent parent for more than 52 nights per year. Therefore if your son stays with his father every weekend for 2 nights he would be entitled to a discount.
     

    The pension issue is a difficult one to answer, if there is sufficient equity in the property your ex husband may prefer to buy out your share of his pension and give you extra cash now. If he was in the RAF for 22 years as you seem to be suggesting, then you ought to be entitled to 50% of the 3 years you were married to him. It should be possible for you to have a pension sharing order if you are not so worried about a larger cash settlement now.
     

    As far as capital is concerned, all capital assets should be taken in to account regardless of whose name they are in. First regard is taken as to need of a child whilst a minor such as housing etc. and then a fair division is made (usually 50/50 if possible). However if one or other party put in more initially say towards the purchase of a house then that party could obtain repayment of those funds first prior to the balance being split equally.
     

    There is no time limit until you have a clean break order dismissing all claims. This of course works both ways!

  • Full question-
     

    The divorce between my 'ex' wife and myself has been a totally amicable affair. We have agreed all financial details and we have written various substantiation to this effect. A decree nisi was granted to us in Sept. '11  As it is a very amicable divorce we decided that only one solicitor was necessary and she employed the services of a local solicitor. However, the solicitor is stalling in applying for the Decree Absolute because of one issue. That being proof of my wife's pension fund. She is a teacher and they are being extremely slow. I have written a letter stating that I will have no future claim with regards her pension, but the solicitor is not satisfied with this.
     

    This has now dragged on for over a year and we are both now keen to close this issue and obtain our decree absolute.
    Can you please advise us how this can be achieved in the quickest time.
    Thank you.
     

    Answer-
     

    The Petitioner can apply to the Court for the Decree Nisi to be made Absolute any time after 6 weeks and one day after the pronouncement of the Decree Nisi. The Form is available from the Court Service Website. The Respondent can apply 3 months after pronouncement of Decree Nisi. It is usual for financial matters to be finalised before the Decree Absolute is granted however. The form is available from the Court Service web site and this should be completed preferably by the Petitioner to the proceedings and sent in to the Court with the fee.