MONEY MORAL DILEMMA. Should Peggy pay back some of Archie's fortune?



  • mapcr77
    mapcr77 Posts: 667 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Had they remained together, both would have shared the missfortune of diminishing assets (and the same applies had things gone the other way and the value of them had increased).
    Seen it in another way, its like Sir Fred Goodwin and his £700k a year pension. When times were good he could have justified that amount, now that they are not, he should surrender it for the common good of those he was previously involved with.
  • kalojac
    kalojac Posts: 423 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Depends on the split I suppose but if it was an amicable split and there were kids involved, and their future was at risk, I would help him out.
  • lamp
    lamp Posts: 57 Forumite
    Unless he's some sort of evil monster, you'd like to think if you married him (presumably for love) in the first instance, there'd be some degree of compassion left within you to help him out in his time of need. If he starts taking the michael, then drop connections.
  • SaraW
    SaraW Posts: 5 Forumite
    I think it's her money now so her actions depend on how she feels about her ex - that's all we can say from a moral perspective given that we have no details of the circumstances of the divorce.For example, if he was mentally or physically abusive then I'm sure most would agree that she deserved all the money she got as compensation but,on the other hand,if she had cheated on him and he had settled with a half-half split just to get the sorry affair over with most would argue, from a moral perspective, that she owes him something.
    It would be different if they had children, it would be upsetting for them if the father felt and acted bitterly towards the mother, but the dilemma doesn't say that they do.

    If she did want to help him out I think it would be important for her to make a specific offer to him and make it clear what the limits of her offer were. Otherwise he could think she felt obliged to do it, that her money was in some way still his, and take advantage of this to press for more money.
  • Paul_Herring
    Paul_Herring Posts: 7,481 Forumite
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    As the guardian succinctly put it:
    There are good public policy considerations in preventing aggrieved litigants from reopening deals they struck or which were imposed following a court hearing, not least the fact that families need to be able to move on following relationship breakdown.

    They should have spread the risk before/at the divorce - rather than her getting it all in cash. It's too late to do anything now.
    Conjugating the verb 'to be":
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  • pennypinchUK
    pennypinchUK Posts: 383 Forumite
    Well, if he ran off with the au pair I'd say his chances of getting anything would be anything between zilch and zero. But if it was amicable, why not? People don't have to hate each other just 'cos they find they can't live together. Although I suspect if I was the woman in that situation I'd have any goodwill payment tied up in a legal contract to say I'd get a share in any future profits of his business. Sounds like a win-win to me.
  • matchmade
    matchmade Posts: 58 Forumite
    Yes, but only in part. Divorce settlements are rarely entirely one-off settlements: for example she will probably be getting half his pension in the future, which will go up and down in value post-divorce, especially if it's a SIPP invested in his company's shares or property holdings. At the very least the monthly payments she'll be getting should be based on his income and capital value, not a fixed sum.

    However it is difficult to justify her returning capital to him, just because his business went pear-shaped: what is she meant to do - sell her house? Arguably the man is at fault for not having the foresight to see his business might get into trouble, or for making bad business decisions after the divorce, for which his ex-wife can't be expected to compensate him. We wouldn't expect the man to add to the divorce settlement if the ex-wife was fleeced by an unsuitable blonde who married her, then divorced her after two years and claimed half her assets, would we?
  • As there are no details of the case in question the answer would be NO!
    Speculation could go on for ever, she might have spent the lot!
  • Dorrie
    Dorrie Posts: 66 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    I would say No. The divorce settlement was exactly that - a settlement. End of their union together. She is under no obligation to give him anything.
  • The financial aspect of divorce is often complicated, requiring a solicitor and sometimes the courts to decide which party gets what. The division of assets is not regulated on a blame basis, eg adultery is not taken into consideration. As the law stands, the wife is entitled to 50% of the assets but this depends on many factors such as dependent children, length of marriage and the wife's future earning capacity to name but a few. At the time of the divorce Peggy and her husband will have been given guidance as to how the assets should be divided and therefor Peggy is under no obligation to give any of the money back. Like wise her ex-husband, should he win the lottery, does not have to share it with Peggy. Statistically only a small percentage of women receive 50% of the assets and many find themselves in financial hardship after divorce, whilst males often have less responsibility, pick themselves up quickly and rebuild there lives with someone else. A solicitor would advise Peggy against loaning money to her ex as this would be difficult to recover should he default on paying it back.
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