terms of divorce question (divorced 2005!)

hi, hope this is in the right place - just looking for some advice if anyone can help!

my current partner and i have been in a relationship for approximately 10 months.

he was divorced from the mother of his three children in 2005 - the children were then aged 19, 17 and 6. As part of the divorce he was left with a load of debt that the ex wife had racked up in his name but he was left to pay as it was her word against his etc.

The house that they lived in together was in the name of the ex wife and her first husband (he had agreed to let her live there if she didnt chase him for maintenance) and was never in my partners name but he paid the mortgage for 20 years while she sat at home all day. Long story short my partner came out worse in the end, had to start again with a horrendous credit rating etc but here's where we're needing some advice:
As part of the settlement in the divorce, he is entitled to 12.5% of the proceeds of the house sale when she remarries/cohabits for 3 months/the youngest reaches 18(shes now 15)/the exwife dies/she voluntarily sells the house.
We know for a fact that she has her current partner living with her and he has been for some time, but obviously it may be hard proving it, as she will not want to sell the house but my partner is more than entitled to that money.
We are not in a brilliant financial situation ourselves - i have debt that a previous partner landed me with, he still has the debt from the marriage, i lost my job and am only working part time now, and his child maintenance payments are taking up about 25 percent of his income and we are just about keeping our head above water - so that money would come in very handy (we would put a deposit down on a house together).

Due to our current financial position we cannot afford to pay for a solicitor, but would like to know where he stands regarding the sale of the house due to her cohabiting?
If anyone has any ideas/advise i'd love to hear from you! :)

sorry just seen that its a right rant - hope you can understand what im trying to say :) amy x


  • monty-doggy
    monty-doggy Posts: 2,134
    First Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped!
    To force a sale can be very expensive and you will need a solicitor. You could try telling her your intention to force a sale and see if she can come up with the money to pay him off?
  • mgdavid
    mgdavid Posts: 6,705
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    if the youngest is now 15 (so the others are way over 18) why is maintenance taking 25% of his income, shouldn't it be 15% ?
    The questions that get the best answers are the questions that give most detail....
  • monty-doggy
    monty-doggy Posts: 2,134
    First Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped!
    Child maintenance payments usually stop when the child reaches 16 (or 20 if they’re in full-time education not higher than A-level or equivalent). But there are some situations in which they’ll stop sooner.
    Child maintenance can stop sooner if, for example:

    the child is 16 or over and getting certain state benefits - including Income Support
    the child stops being eligible for Child Benefit for any other reason
    the parent receiving the payment stops being the main carer of the child
    the parent receiving the payment doesn’t want it anymore
    either parent dies
    the parent paying the maintenance goes to prison - payments are reduced to zero but may increase when they’re released
  • peachyprice
    peachyprice Posts: 22,346
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    How much is the 12.5% likely to be? Is she even in a position to raise that sort of money.

    To force a sale your husband would have to take her to court, but he is not going to win while she has the 15yo living at the home and in full time education, so realistically he's not going to be able force a sale for at least the next 3 years.

    Would it be worth trying to negotiate with her? Could your ex suggest he stops paying maintenance now in lieu of the 12.5% lump sum so that you could put that money towards a house deposit?

    Either way, you're not going to be buying a house any time soon.
    Accept your past without regret, handle your present with confidence and face your future without fear
  • TBagpuss
    TBagpuss Posts: 11,198
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper
    Check the order. There is usually a provision in orders of this kind, which says that the house will be sold when one of the trigger point (such as cohabitation) unless there is still a minor child living at home in which case the court's permission is needed. The court will not grant permission if the effect of paying you will be that the house has to be sold and the child/children made homeless.
    SO the first issue is whether she is likely to be able to raise the money without having to sell the house.
    If so, then you can ask for your money, and if she denies that she is cohabiting it would come down to whether the court believed your evidence or hers - one issue would be whether her partner maintains a separate property of his own.
    All posts are my personal opinion, not formal advice Always get proper, professional advice (particularly about anything legal!)
  • theoretica
    theoretica Posts: 12,223
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    Would it help to point out to the ex wife that in 3 years when the youngest reaches 18, and the triggerpoint is unequivocally reached, the house will be worth more, so by settling now 12.5% will be less money and maybe easier to get a mortgage for?
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
  • Can anyone help I have been separated 15 years from my husband who has been in prison for the last 12 years but I can't locate him, prison won't help me n I don't want to spend a fortune on solicitors.. Just want a divorce so I can carry on with my life.. Thanks
  • TBagpuss
    TBagpuss Posts: 11,198
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper
    Hi Lisa - it would be better to start your own thread as this is a new question.

    Do you know which prison he was originally sent to? Or his prison number? Are you sure he is still in prison?

    You may find that it is worth seeing a solicitor at least initially as they may have better luck with the prison service than you.
    All posts are my personal opinion, not formal advice Always get proper, professional advice (particularly about anything legal!)
  • Sinhanada
    Sinhanada Posts: 497 Forumite
    Hi Lisa

    Using an online company for divorces (which I've used before):
    My spouse and I have been separated for years and I don't know where she is?

    You cannot just get a divorce after 5 years. There still needs to be an attempt to serve the divorce papers so they have the opportunity to respond as anyone can say they have been separated for any period of time.

    What the court needs is evidence you have tried your hardest to locate them or if they are UK based you can apply for an order requiring HM revenue and Customs to hand over the address on their records to the court.

    These are not the only options and it is best to speak to a divorce adviser about your individual circumstances on
  • esmy
    esmy Posts: 1,341
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Post

    Have you/your solicitor tried this?
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