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    • SoontobeEx
    • By SoontobeEx 10th Jul 18, 12:44 PM
    • 3Posts
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    SoontobeEx
    Divorce - how to split assets fairly?
    • #1
    • 10th Jul 18, 12:44 PM
    Divorce - how to split assets fairly? 10th Jul 18 at 12:44 PM
    Hi all
    I am a first-time user/poster so apologies in advance if this is in the wrong place or is answered elsewhere!


    I am about to divorce my husband but am a bit clueless where to start in terms of what needs to be done and what I can reasonably expect financially from this split.
    We have been married 13 years and have 2 children (ages 7 and 9). We own a property together and all our finances are joint - we both put our salaries into a joint account and all mortgage/bills/living expenses come out of this single account. My husband works full time and is on a significant salary. Since our children were born I have been working part-time only and my earning potential is far lower than my husband's.
    Post-split, the children will be living with me and my husband will probably have them only every other weekend though he hasn't yet committed to what he wants.
    I am finding it very difficult to get any sense of what is fair and reasonable to ask for from him, as there are no websites that I've found to give ball park figures (other than the cmoptions.org website for child maintenance calculations)


    My current questions are:
    1. What should I be asking for as a reasonable split of the current assets - house/car/savings/etc?
    2. The formal child maintenance calculator gives a basic figure for how much of my husband's salary should be paid towards childcare costs. Should I accept this or are there any circumstances under which I should be asking for more than this?
    3. What else do I need to consider? (I know this akin to 'how long is a piece of string?' but is there anything major?)


    Thanks all in advance for your help!
Page 1
    • fibonarchie
    • By fibonarchie 10th Jul 18, 12:51 PM
    • 904 Posts
    • 1,559 Thanks
    fibonarchie
    • #2
    • 10th Jul 18, 12:51 PM
    • #2
    • 10th Jul 18, 12:51 PM
    Have you had a look on Wikivorce?

    https://www.wikivorce.com/divorce/Guide-To-Divorce.html
    Last edited by fibonarchie; 10-07-2018 at 12:53 PM. Reason: adding link
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 10th Jul 18, 12:55 PM
    • 4,034 Posts
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    bouicca21
    • #3
    • 10th Jul 18, 12:55 PM
    • #3
    • 10th Jul 18, 12:55 PM
    A second recommendation for Wikivorce.

    Housing the children is a priority. When sorting out assets don't forget pensions.
    • tacpot12
    • By tacpot12 10th Jul 18, 3:21 PM
    • 1,496 Posts
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    tacpot12
    • #4
    • 10th Jul 18, 3:21 PM
    • #4
    • 10th Jul 18, 3:21 PM
    When I divorced I found it very useful to have a family budget available. Using this budget you can map out all the costs that you currently incur, and see where items need to be split.

    I did mine in columns; starting with a Joint column, I transferred over amount to myself and my ex based on what we thought might be happening in the divorce - her staying in the family home and me moving to rent somewhere.

    At the end of the exercise, we ended up with a shortfall for both people (because two people can live more cheaply than one and our incomes were relatively low at the time). As your husband earns a lot, it may be that there is no shortfall in his side, but seeing what excess he has will help you decide how much 'excess' to ask for yourself: you should ask to have some disposable income to pay for holidays, outings and entertainment, if your husband will also be able to have these things.

    It will help if you identify what your husband should be contributing according to the CMS rules for Child Maintenance, then combine this with you own income to see what your shortfall will be and see what you and your solicitor can negotiate by way of spousal maintenance payments.

    Your husband's pension might be his biggest asset. Pension splitting on divorce is a common process nowdays.
    • PrettyKittyKat
    • By PrettyKittyKat 10th Jul 18, 3:47 PM
    • 862 Posts
    • 787 Thanks
    PrettyKittyKat
    • #5
    • 10th Jul 18, 3:47 PM
    • #5
    • 10th Jul 18, 3:47 PM
    I think the starting point is half of assets. If this were the case consider what you would get in terms of equity. Are you intending on staying in the family home and buying him out? or do you intend to buy on your own (likely a downsize as you will be buying a property alone) or rent? If you re buying, will you have enough deposit to do this with your equity/savings? Can you then afford the running costs and day to day expenses on your income? Remember your income will includes the child Maintenance (go off the calculator amount for now) and benefits you can claim. It is likely you will not be able to maintain the same lifestyle, as like a poster said above it is cheaper to live as a couple than separately, so have this in mind when looking at your finances realistically. If that all adds up then go with that. If it doesn't then this is your starting point to discuss with your partner and come to an agreement. He will also need to think about his finances and how much more he is able to offer, if that's what he wants to do. Other things to consider are larger expenses for the children he could cover, such as uniforms and school trips. Alot of this will depend on your relationship at the moment, if it is hostile it will make the situation more difficult but if you can remain civil and discuss it then it will help.
    • SoontobeEx
    • By SoontobeEx 11th Jul 18, 10:09 AM
    • 3 Posts
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    SoontobeEx
    • #6
    • 11th Jul 18, 10:09 AM
    thanks
    • #6
    • 11th Jul 18, 10:09 AM
    Thanks everyone so far. very helpful - I did have a look at wikivorce but will definitely spend more time on it over the next few days.
    @tacpot - that's a great practical suggestion I'll do that thank you.
    @PrettyKitKat - We will be selling the house as we both need the equity to get a new place (I can't afford to buy my husband out to stay in our current home)
    I'm trying to get a feel for what the split of equity might be - my husband thinks that 50/50 is generous on his part but I've heard anecdotally that as we've been married over 10 years and the children will be housed with me, that I should be asking for more. Is 65% reasonable?
    At 65% I'd be able to afford a house in the same area and the kids would be able to stay at the same school with their friends and have some 'normality'. At 50% this wouldn't be possible....
    Last edited by SoontobeEx; 11-07-2018 at 10:12 AM.
    • RADDERS
    • By RADDERS 11th Jul 18, 11:28 AM
    • 239 Posts
    • 271 Thanks
    RADDERS
    • #7
    • 11th Jul 18, 11:28 AM
    • #7
    • 11th Jul 18, 11:28 AM
    I have a friend that has just been through this, what they eventually agreed was that she would take more equity out of the house and not touch his pension.

    As he was the higher earner this enabled him to purchase another house with a mortgage and she could afford to purchase a house outright.

    You would really need to double check all the figures for all assets to work out if this would work for you.
    • TBagpuss
    • By TBagpuss 11th Jul 18, 2:44 PM
    • 6,907 Posts
    • 9,109 Thanks
    TBagpuss
    • #8
    • 11th Jul 18, 2:44 PM
    • #8
    • 11th Jul 18, 2:44 PM
    Thanks everyone so far. very helpful - I did have a look at wikivorce but will definitely spend more time on it over the next few days.
    @tacpot - that's a great practical suggestion I'll do that thank you.
    @PrettyKitKat - We will be selling the house as we both need the equity to get a new place (I can't afford to buy my husband out to stay in our current home)
    I'm trying to get a feel for what the split of equity might be - my husband thinks that 50/50 is generous on his part but I've heard anecdotally that as we've been married over 10 years and the children will be housed with me, that I should be asking for more. Is 65% reasonable?
    At 65% I'd be able to afford a house in the same area and the kids would be able to stay at the same school with their friends and have some 'normality'. At 50% this wouldn't be possible....
    Originally posted by SoontobeEx
    It's reasonable to look at your needs and resources. So looks at your mortgage capacity, and at how much you would need to buy a suitable house , and what the difference is.
    Then look at the same factors for your ex.

    If a 50/50 split of the equity means that he gets to buy a 3 bed bhouse in a nice area and you can only afford a 2 bed in a less pleasant area, then the 50/50 split is unlikely to be fair.

    50/50 is not generous, it is the starting point, Your husband may have paid more to the mortgage but your contributions in caring for the children etc would be seen as equally valuable.


    Whether a 65/35 split would be fair will depend on the specifics. It would allow you to rehouse, would the 35% give your ex enough to be able to buy, with a mortgage he can afford?

    A split where the lower earner / main carer of the children gets more than 50% is often fair because that person will usually have lower mortgage capacity, lower earning capacity so less chance of increasing salary to match their ex, less disposable income so less ability to build up savings or a pension, etc. However, this will depend on the actual figures, rather than there being a set % which will be seen as fair or unfair.
    • Working Mum
    • By Working Mum 11th Jul 18, 3:47 PM
    • 314 Posts
    • 1,066 Thanks
    Working Mum
    • #9
    • 11th Jul 18, 3:47 PM
    • #9
    • 11th Jul 18, 3:47 PM
    I got divorced after 14 years of marriage and 2 children - then aged 8 & 10.

    I was (still am) self employed so income was very low compared to my ex-husband's - the kids were with me and he had them officially every other weekend - plus any other time he wanted to take them for tea etc PLUS 2 x one week's annual holidays (he had a new wife and they wanted to play "happy families").

    I got 70% equity in the home. I kept my pension as at that time it was worthless. The rules have changed now but I still kept my pension.

    My ex-husband used the CSA website to calculate what he should pay each month. Fine.....I insisted on him also covering HALF of the costs of school uniforms, school shoes, school lunches, bus passes, trips and consumables - they cost a fortune over time. My ex-husband wasn't happy to agree to this but duly paid - he didn't want anyone thinking he didn't pay for his kids lol!

    I kept the receipts and had an easy recording process in a spreadsheet and would claim them back at the end of each school term - this way I had a little savings pot!!

    I would ensure you have a "full and final" settlement - you don't want to be going back and renegotiating anything when you are older.

    "Get your game face" on would be my advice and remember your solicitor is NOT your counsellor - she is there to get you the best financial deal possible. got divorced in a total of 8 billable hours!

    Build a life your future self will be proud of and on't engage in any tit for tat with your ex-husband. The only winners are solicitors I am afraid.

    Good luck!!
    • Kynthia
    • By Kynthia 11th Jul 18, 6:30 PM
    • 5,349 Posts
    • 7,454 Thanks
    Kynthia
    I think you should do research on what you need, what assets you both have (not just property but savings, pensions, etc) and what income you'll have after. Then get legal advice.

    While the starting point is 50:50 once it isn't a short marriage the needs of the children need to be considered. I don't know how that works but they deserve you getting the best advice.
    Don't listen to me, I'm no expert!
    • SoontobeEx
    • By SoontobeEx 12th Jul 18, 10:06 AM
    • 3 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    SoontobeEx
    I got divorced after 14 years of marriage and 2 children - then aged 8 & 10.

    I was (still am) self employed so income was very low compared to my ex-husband's - the kids were with me and he had them officially every other weekend - plus any other time he wanted to take them for tea etc PLUS 2 x one week's annual holidays (he had a new wife and they wanted to play "happy families").

    I got 70% equity in the home. I kept my pension as at that time it was worthless. The rules have changed now but I still kept my pension.

    My ex-husband used the CSA website to calculate what he should pay each month. Fine.....I insisted on him also covering HALF of the costs of school uniforms, school shoes, school lunches, bus passes, trips and consumables - they cost a fortune over time. My ex-husband wasn't happy to agree to this but duly paid - he didn't want anyone thinking he didn't pay for his kids lol!

    I kept the receipts and had an easy recording process in a spreadsheet and would claim them back at the end of each school term - this way I had a little savings pot!!

    I would ensure you have a "full and final" settlement - you don't want to be going back and renegotiating anything when you are older.

    "Get your game face" on would be my advice and remember your solicitor is NOT your counsellor - she is there to get you the best financial deal possible. got divorced in a total of 8 billable hours!

    Build a life your future self will be proud of and on't engage in any tit for tat with your ex-husband. The only winners are solicitors I am afraid.

    Good luck!!
    Originally posted by Working Mum



    Thanks so much this is so helpful!
    • The Maestro
    • By The Maestro 14th Jul 18, 1:47 AM
    • 70 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    The Maestro
    Unless there are many tens of thousands or hundreds or millions of pounds of capital involved, try to work it out amicably. How does he feel about only seeing the kids every other weekend?
    • caprikid1
    • By caprikid1 16th Jul 18, 2:07 PM
    • 678 Posts
    • 650 Thanks
    caprikid1
    "she is there to get you the best financial deal possible. got divorced in a total of 8 billable hours!"


    That is the problem, solicitors don't care about antagonizing the situation often.


    What do you want an extra 50 a month or an Ex who is willing to have the kids whenever and help out with other costs ?


    My Children and now 12-15 I got divorced after 15 years of marriage (her choice). I have the children one week ,she has them the next. We are not miles away so the kids can pop over if they wish and frequently appear at the others house outside of the normal arrangement.


    My Ex could have probably got a better deal financially (She walked away with a house fully paid for plus large pension and savings). It was though difficult to keep it amicable as soon as the solicitor was involved as the measure the solicitor used was how much money she got for her client.


    3 years on and we still share keys to each other houses and the kids come and go as they wish. Yes we still discuss money and the like but no more than when we were married.
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