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sometimesitdoesn'twork

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Subject: Inherited property before marriage Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:55:03

I think the fact it\'s an inheritance won\'t matter that much and the argument is you brought the property to a short marriage as a contribution.

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Mr.Hopeless

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Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:54:16

I believe that since you do not have children and your marriage was a short one, you stand a good chance of keeping your inheritance. I am not sure but it would truly appear unjust if it were to happen otherwise. However, I do believe that you should immediately ask your solicitor about his/her opinion. While hiring a sol might be an expensive option, it might be worth it in your case.

sometimesitdoesn'twork

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Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:55:03

Inheritances are rather a grey area and if both parties needs can be met from the other family assets and an inherited asset has been kept separate from the family finances it might be alloted to the person who inherited. The problem here is the inherited house has been used as the matrimonial home so is technically now a matrimonial asset. However, in divorce matrimonial assets are shared according to a check list of factors in s25 Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 and one factor is the duration of the marriage. There is an argument that with a short marriage the parties get back what they had before marriage and share any growth during the marriage. The overall circumstances are relevant and paying something to allow H to rehouse and readjust to independent living might be realistic.

Stuart

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Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:54:15

They have only been married for 14 months, lived together for only 12 months prior to marriage and have no children so IMO the court will seek to put both parties back into a position as if they had never been married. So, I reckon that the inherited house will NOT be in the equation....

sometimesitdoesn'twork

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Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:55:03

Where the marriage is short and there are no children, it used to be simple. The yardstick for measuring the extent of a claim was the applicant’s reasonable requirements. However, the way recent case law has evolved has changed that. In H v H (Financial Provision: Short Marriage [1981] 2 FLR 392, Lord Justice Balcombe said: \"[With] short marriage(s) between two young persons, neither of whom had been adversely affected financially by the consequences of the marriage and [where] each… is fully capable of earning his or her own living, the approach which the court should normally adopt is to allow for a short period of periodical payments to allow the party… in the weaker financial position… to adjust herself to the situation and thereafter to achieve the wholly desirable result of a clean break.\" The principles of fairness, non discrimination and yardstick of equality were established in White v White [2000] 3 WLR 1571. Then in Foster [2003] EWCA Civ 565, [2003] 2 FLR 299 the parties were returned to the position they were in before the marriage and the White v White yardstick applied so the profits made during the marriage were equally divided. The split was 61:39. It was said that all the section 25 criteria (MCA 1973) have to be applied to the circumstances of the case to achieve a fair result that avoids discrimination. The length of the marriage is only one circumstance. In Miller [2005] Lord Justice Thorpe said: \"marriage is not to be equated to a purely financial venture where the court may redress breach of contract… by an award of damages’. A more sophisticated evaluation of the extent of the wife’s commitment to and investment in the marriage emotionally and psychologically is required. ‘What a party has given to the marriage and lost [by the separation] cannot be measured by simply counting the days of its duration.\" The principles of fairness, non discrimination and yardstick of equality applies to all cases big or small and regardless of the length of the marriage. Although the approach is the same the results will depend on the individual circumstances of the case.

redwine118

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Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:54:16

Thanks for your help everyone. I believe the biggest problem with my inherited property is that it became a matrimonial home just because my stbx had no place of his own. He simply moved in with me and expected me to put the house as joint property. Thanks for highlighting various cases. I really hope Stuart is right. Will speak to my solicitor today.

sometimesitdoesn'twork

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Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:55:03

I think the fact it\'s an inheritance won\'t matter that much and the argument is you brought the property to a short marriage as a contribution.
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