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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: UK Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34142
Experience:  25 years experience of all aspects of family law
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My wife of just over 7 years has left our family home to live

Customer Question

My wife of just over 7 years has left our family home to live with her latest lover having taken our two children of 12 and 7 with her too. Shes had four affairs in four years and enough is enough. She has asked me to commence divorce proceedings and despite mediation where she agreed to remove her belongings from the family home that I now inhabit alone she has failed now for over a year to remove all her belongings. She bought nothing financially to the marital home to which I contributed £47,000. I want to know can I remove her final goods from the house which is in joint names (despite her lack of contribution) and do I have to give her a 50/50 share of equity even though she bought nothing to the table.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: UK Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question
I shall do my best to assist you but I need some further information first
How long were you actually living together?
How much is the house worth and how much is outstanding on the mortgage?
What other assets and debts are there?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hello Claire
We lived together since 2000 marrying in 2007 after the birth of our second child.
The property was valued at 125,00-130,000 in January 2013 by estate agents x 3 in Ashford Kent
The current mortgage is £44,000. At mediation it was agreed her belongings would be removed by Christmas 2012,
Easter 2013 and then 30th June. She comes to the house and removes a couple of bags at a time and just let
these agreed deadlines by herself to pass by causing me huge difficulties in trying to restart MY new life after
the devastation she has wrought. Also at mediation it was agreed that I stay in the marital home (as she lives
in her new man's rented home totally financially cared for by hime - as she only works two part days as a cleaner).
The mediation also recommended that the financial settlement of the home should be that I receive an extra
£25,000 of the houses' equity which she agreed to at mediation. I intend to buy her out at my earliest convenience.

Kindest regards and thanks for all your help. Also if she fails to move out her belongings as agreed by her (now x 3) do
I have a right to change the locks as she has now abandoned the family home and taken my children with her.?

Expert:  Clare replied 4 years ago.
I am so very sorry but the house remains her Matrimonial Home so long as you are married and in addition she is a joint owner.
She is entitled to leave her belongings there and indeed to come and go as she wishes and accordingly you cannot change the locks.
You can of course store her goods in one particular place so that you can get on with your life - there is no need for them to be spread about the house.
Unfortunately you need to tread carefully.
If your ex decided to make a financial claim within the divorce proceedings she would get at least 50% of the equity despite her lack of contribution and despite what was agreed at mediation. This is because she has the children with her
It would be sensible to start the divorce proceedings as she has asked and to have the agreement turned into a court order as soon as possible
However disappointing I hope that this is useful - please ask if you need further information

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