Re-marriage trap - Court Order following Divorce help

Following my Divorce in 2000 and finally got my ex-husband in Court in 2008 to settle Finances.  My ex-husband re-married prior to the Court Order but solicitor went ahead anyway and also appointed a Barrister!  On the day in Court neither my solicitor or the Barrister (who I had met at Court on 2 previous occasions regarding settlement) attended so I was left with a cocky Barrister who I had never met and the solicitor sent a paralegal who I had also never met to Court on the day - I was very upset as I didn't know them, the Barrister spent most of his time laughing and joking outside the door with my ex-husbands Barrister, the paralegal the solicitor had sent said nothing apart from saying her name as a representative for the solicitor!  I was receiving treatment for Cancer at the time so it was all very upsetting.

The Barrister said I needed to come to an agreement and said I should settle and agree to a 75%/25% split in my favour, with the house transferred to me to live in and payment not due to my ex for his 25% unless I re-married or cohabited for more than 12 months, on the basis my ex-husband did not have to pay the mortgage and I was to make all payments and try to remove him from the mortgage.

This has continued since 2008, property was transferred to me,I have met all mortgage payments - my ex has paid nothing to the mortgage since 1997 - the mortgage is still in joint names as the lender Birmingham Midshires, has repeatedly refused to take him off /transfer or re-mortgage the property to me or extend the mortgage term - which has left me on a SVR for the last 22 years.

I am now in Court with the Lender for a Repossession Claim due to bogus 'Arrears' following an illegal CMI interest error (FCA deemed it so and told all Lenders they had to remove it) which sent my monthly payments up from approx £335 per month to £2,700 per month - which showed 'Arrears of £32,000!  Lender reimbursed £24,000 to the account but not the full amount so left arrears of approx £9,000 which I didn't owe - I have been fighting with them to get these removed since 2018 - they have yet to remove them - hence taking me to Court for Repossession (and my ex-husband as he is still in joint names on the mortgage!!

Can anyone please advise on the above and
1)      Due to the Re-marriage Trap - ex re-marrying before the 2008 Court Order - can this be revoked and should it?
2)     If so what would be the implications of this with regard to 75%/25% split of the property?  Would he still be entitled and would I still have to pay him this even though the property was transferred to me and he has paid no mortgage payments since 1997?
3)     My solicitor told me at the time that provided I didn't re-marry or Cohabit myself I would not have to pay my ex or sell the property but if I chose to sell and move, the entire equity would stay with me in order to purchase another property - is this correct?  I am single and would like to move so that I will no longer have a mortgage to pay as I am now 62, but worried if I sell I would have to pay my ex his 25% - even though he has paid nothing towards the property, mortgage or following our divorce, paid nothing for his 2 children who I raised and provided for by myself as a single parent?
4)     At Court in 2008 my ex laughed at me, saying he doesn't have to pay for his children or the mortgage and I will have to pay for everything whilst his 25% increases along with the equity in the property?

I am really struggling and at my wits end with trying to deal with all of this so grateful for any help please.  Thank you. 


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Comments

  • BrassicWoman
    BrassicWoman Posts: 3,201 Forumite
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    We would need the exact wording of the court order/ agreement to answer those questions.
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  • Ok thank you I will find it and post on here tomorrow 
  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,917 Ambassador
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    Can anyone please advise on the above and
    1)      Due to the Re-marriage Trap - ex re-marrying before the 2008 Court Order - can this be revoked and should it?


    The marriage clause is about you re-marrying, not your ex. The logic is that if you have a partner living in the property they should be contributing to household expenditure and therefore your ex doesn't need to contribute. In other words, any new partner of yours shouldn't have their living costs subsidised by your ex. It is nothing to do with your ex remarrying or his living arrangements.
    I'm a Forum Ambassador on The Coronavirus Boards as well as the housing, mortgages and student money saving boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Forum Ambassadors are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.
  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,917 Ambassador
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    The Barrister said I needed to come to an agreement and said I should settle and agree to a 75%/25% split in my favour, with the house transferred to me to live in and payment not due to my ex for his 25% unless I re-married or cohabited for more than 12 months, on the basis my ex-husband did not have to pay the mortgage and I was to make all payments and try to remove him from the mortgage.

    This has continued since 2008, property was transferred to me,I have met all mortgage payments - my ex has paid nothing to the mortgage since 1997 - the mortgage is still in joint names as the lender Birmingham Midshires, has repeatedly refused to take him off /transfer or re-mortgage the property to me or extend the mortgage term - which has left me on a SVR for the last 22 years.


    So basically, your husband has 25% equity in the property. He can't get his hands on this money unless you pay him out or sell up. In return, you live in the property with your ex having no rights to live there and you pay all the expenses of the property including the mortgage. The lender doesn't want to take your ex off the mortgage as that gives them 2 people to chase for arrears. The only way of removing him from the mortgage is if you re-mortgaged to a different lender if BM won't agree. This is a pain for him more than you, it means that if he wanted to get a mortgage on another property, he needs to declare that he already has this liability and that can seriously hamper him buying a property with his new partner. It effects you less. Incidentally, I don't understand why you couldn't transfer to another deal from BM over the last years, normally you can move deals, so get another fixed rate when one expires.
    I'm a Forum Ambassador on The Coronavirus Boards as well as the housing, mortgages and student money saving boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Forum Ambassadors are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.
  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,917 Ambassador
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    3)     My solicitor told me at the time that provided I didn't re-marry or Cohabit myself I would not have to pay my ex or sell the property but if I chose to sell and move, the entire equity would stay with me in order to purchase another property - is this correct?  I am single and would like to move so that I will no longer have a mortgage to pay as I am now 62, but worried if I sell I would have to pay my ex his 25% - even though he has paid nothing towards the property, mortgage or following our divorce, paid nothing for his 2 children who I raised and provided for by myself as a single parent?



    The whole point of a 75/25 agreement is that he gets the 25% at some point. The detail will be in what is in the contract. It may say that you can use the equity with conditions attached eg if you still have a child under 18 or in education or it may always give you the right to keep the equity - though you would have thought that he must be entitled to it at some time, otherwise why is it in the agreement? His payments to you in support of the children would have been agreed with the courts and approved in consultation with you. It sounds like a clean break agreement, where in return for him only having 25% of the equity and not being able to access it, rather than 50%, you waive your right to maintenance.
    I'm a Forum Ambassador on The Coronavirus Boards as well as the housing, mortgages and student money saving boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Forum Ambassadors are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.
  • k3lvc
    k3lvc Posts: 4,174 Forumite
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    I am now in Court with the Lender for a Repossession Claim due to bogus 'Arrears' following an illegal CMI interest error (FCA deemed it so and told all Lenders they had to remove it) which sent my monthly payments up from approx £335 per month to £2,700 per month - which showed 'Arrears of £32,000!  Lender reimbursed £24,000 to the account but not the full amount so left arrears of approx £9,000 which I didn't owe - I have been fighting with them to get these removed since 2018 - they have yet to remove them - hence taking me to Court for Repossession (and my ex-husband as he is still in joint names on the mortgage!!


    Can you elaborate on this as it makes little sense in either this or your other post ?

    Did the FCA give a comment on your particular case or are you using a generic ruling to try and fit your case ? Assuming Birmingham Midshires have rejected your complaint (since 2016 !!) have you escalated or why are you holding out hope of refund ?

    Outside of the arrears they're claiming (assuming they write them off) do you have the means to complete the remainder of the mortgage to terms or are there other, more fundamental issues (interest only mortgage etc) that will make this impossible and you're looking for any loopholes you can find ?
  • tightauldgit
    tightauldgit Posts: 2,628 Forumite
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    Following my Divorce in 2000 and finally got my ex-husband in Court in 2008 to settle Finances.  My ex-husband re-married prior to the Court Order but solicitor went ahead anyway and also appointed a Barrister!  On the day in Court neither my solicitor or the Barrister (who I had met at Court on 2 previous occasions regarding settlement) attended so I was left with a cocky Barrister who I had never met and the solicitor sent a paralegal who I had also never met to Court on the day - I was very upset as I didn't know them, the Barrister spent most of his time laughing and joking outside the door with my ex-husbands Barrister, the paralegal the solicitor had sent said nothing apart from saying her name as a representative for the solicitor!  I was receiving treatment for Cancer at the time so it was all very upsetting.

    The Barrister said I needed to come to an agreement and said I should settle and agree to a 75%/25% split in my favour, with the house transferred to me to live in and payment not due to my ex for his 25% unless I re-married or cohabited for more than 12 months, on the basis my ex-husband did not have to pay the mortgage and I was to make all payments and try to remove him from the mortgage.

    This has continued since 2008, property was transferred to me,I have met all mortgage payments - my ex has paid nothing to the mortgage since 1997 - the mortgage is still in joint names as the lender Birmingham Midshires, has repeatedly refused to take him off /transfer or re-mortgage the property to me or extend the mortgage term - which has left me on a SVR for the last 22 years.

    I am now in Court with the Lender for a Repossession Claim due to bogus 'Arrears' following an illegal CMI interest error (FCA deemed it so and told all Lenders they had to remove it) which sent my monthly payments up from approx £335 per month to £2,700 per month - which showed 'Arrears of £32,000!  Lender reimbursed £24,000 to the account but not the full amount so left arrears of approx £9,000 which I didn't owe - I have been fighting with them to get these removed since 2018 - they have yet to remove them - hence taking me to Court for Repossession (and my ex-husband as he is still in joint names on the mortgage!!

    Can anyone please advise on the above and
    1)      Due to the Re-marriage Trap - ex re-marrying before the 2008 Court Order - can this be revoked and should it?
    2)     If so what would be the implications of this with regard to 75%/25% split of the property?  Would he still be entitled and would I still have to pay him this even though the property was transferred to me and he has paid no mortgage payments since 1997?
    3)     My solicitor told me at the time that provided I didn't re-marry or Cohabit myself I would not have to pay my ex or sell the property but if I chose to sell and move, the entire equity would stay with me in order to purchase another property - is this correct?  I am single and would like to move so that I will no longer have a mortgage to pay as I am now 62, but worried if I sell I would have to pay my ex his 25% - even though he has paid nothing towards the property, mortgage or following our divorce, paid nothing for his 2 children who I raised and provided for by myself as a single parent?
    4)     At Court in 2008 my ex laughed at me, saying he doesn't have to pay for his children or the mortgage and I will have to pay for everything whilst his 25% increases along with the equity in the property?

    I am really struggling and at my wits end with trying to deal with all of this so grateful for any help please.  Thank you. 


    You will have to find and follow the exact wording of the court order that was made by the court at the time and that you agreed to. 

    1) I don't know what Re-marriage trap you refer to - his being remarried at the time of the order makes no difference to what was agreed.

    2) You will be entitled to whatever is in the order - from your description it sounds like he has a 25% share of the equity that only becomes due to him if you remarry or cohabit. 

    3) It depends what it says in the order. It should be spelled out exactly what happens in the event of a sale, death, etc. Remember that if he's on the deeds and mortgage you will need to get his permission to sell the property or go to court to force a sale. Without seeing the order it's impossible to say but I would be surprised if his 25% didn't become due in the event of a sale - otherwise is he going to continue having a 25% stake in the new property or does his 25% share magically disappear when you sell the house?

    4) That's not really a question but with regards the mortgage that seems to be what you agreed to yes - you pay for everything and he maintains his 25% share. Again though, we would have to see the exact wording of the order. 
  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,917 Ambassador
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    "4)     At Court in 2008 my ex laughed at me, saying he doesn't have to pay for his children or the mortgage and I will have to pay for everything whilst his 25% increases along with the equity in the property?"

    That he can laugh at not paying for his own kids upbringing is a sad reflection on him, don't let it get to you. But yes, that is what a clean break settlement means, in return for you keeping more of the property equity and him not being able to have access to his funds, you have the costs of the mortgage and running the home.

    Remember this will have a major impact on his ability to get a mortgage and get on with his life.
    I'm a Forum Ambassador on The Coronavirus Boards as well as the housing, mortgages and student money saving boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Forum Ambassadors are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.
  • Thank you for your comments, I am very upset and in Court tomorrow regarding the Lenders bogus claim for Repossession on the grounds of their major error which caused the arrears, which is taking up alot of my time, whilst caring for a severely disabled daughter and trying to work.

    I will then have more time to post details of the Court Order Financial Settlement - my ex had/has no inclination to have another mortgage and said he prefers to rent and keep his name on the mortgage so that he can tabs on me - I very naively thought that getting a Divorce meant severing all ties, my solicitor said that due to children it could not be a Clean Break Settlement which is what I wanted - I raised the 2 children from our marriage from the ages of 7&5 with no financial help from my ex until the Court Order which said he had to pay for the youngest who was 18 at that time, whilst she was still in College, he paid £50 per month for 1 year.

    I wanted to sever all ties as a Clean Break, (divorce was very acrimonious as he was very abusive verbally in front of the children, and had threatened to kill me on several occasions, with knives and choking me, I should of reported him to the police but was trying to keep the peace for the children) - Solicitor said couldn't be a Clean Break - I wanted house transferred to me with no claim on him for financial assistance for children or the mortgage - so that we could both move on as he had remarried.  I had equity in the property as owned it prior to the marriage which was for less than 10 years.


  • Thank you for your comments, I am very upset and in Court tomorrow regarding the Lenders bogus claim for Repossession on the grounds of their major error which caused the arrears, which is taking up alot of my time, whilst caring for a severely disabled daughter and trying to work.

    I will then have more time to post details of the Court Order Financial Settlement - my ex had/has no inclination to have another mortgage and said he prefers to rent and keep his name on the mortgage so that he can tabs on me - I very naively thought that getting a Divorce meant severing all ties, my solicitor said that due to children it could not be a Clean Break Settlement which is what I wanted - I raised the 2 children from our marriage from the ages of 7&5 with no financial help from my ex until the Court Order which said he had to pay for the youngest who was 18 at that time, whilst she was still in College, he paid £50 per month for 1 year.

    I wanted to sever all ties as a Clean Break, (divorce was very acrimonious as he was very abusive verbally in front of the children, and had threatened to kill me on several occasions, with knives and choking me, I should of reported him to the police but was trying to keep the peace for the children) - Solicitor said couldn't be a Clean Break - I wanted house transferred to me with no claim on him for financial assistance for children or the mortgage - so that we could both move on as he had remarried.  I had equity in the property as owned it prior to the marriage which was for less than 10 years.


    From a financial point of view the reason you don't have a "clean break" is that you agreed to him maintaining a 25% equity stake in your house in perpetuity (apparently). Kids are an entirely separate matter. 

    The only reason he is still on the mortgage is because you haven't been able to get him off the mortgage by remortgaging in your own name.

    I think it helps to get some of these things clearer in your own head because I know from experience that once things become acrimonious a lot of the issues get tangled together. 


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