Legal family advice

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Wren81
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Legal family advice

Postby Wren81 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 6:52 am

Hi all
I wonder if you can help me, I just want to know where myself and young child stand. I’ve been in a relationship with partner for over 10 years, we live together in a rented property and have a toddler together. He has children from a previous relationship and actually is still married. My issue with this is that they own a house together in which the wife and children live (no mortgage as paid off years ago), but my partner has made no will or provision for us. We don’t own a house and I don’t work as decided to stay home to raise our child. He has sizeable saving to which I have no access, and life insurance through work is still made to other children and wife. He travels a lot and my fear is god forbid something happens to him where do we stand legally? Are we entitled to anything? Our relationship is in a bad place because of this and I don’t even know where we stand if I were to raise our child alone. Very anxious and scared (he keeps saying he will sort will and divorce but years later nothing has happened). Thanks for reading this mammoth post!
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Lola123
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Re Legal Family Advice

Postby Lola123 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:53 am

Hi - I have a family law background but would never give specific legal advice without knowing all the facts. But in a nutshell your partner has a financial responsibility towards your child (not you) as he is the father and if something were to happen to him you could (on your child’s behalf) make a claim against his estate. I’m not clear if his wife knows about you but if she does could you not explain that you are feeling very vulnerable and you would like him to make a financial provision for your child now and if he were to die. You said that you do not work and I wondered if he pays you a regular sum of money as if he does this could be a basis of an inheritance act claim as a dependent. These are all focusing on if he were to die but perhaps for the immediate future he could open a savings plan or something similar for your benefit? I would urge you to seek advice fro
a family solicitor who is a member of Resolution.
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HR2611
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Re: Legal family advice

Postby HR2611 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:34 am

Just to add to Lola123’s reply, whilst it is possible to make a claim against a deceased’s estate on the basis of being a dependent, it is potentially very expensive and time consuming. Also the legal costs incurred by the estate in relation to the claim can effectively reduce the pot of money available to all.
Unfortunately without a will in place, if your partner died, his wife and all the children would inherit and unless you make a successful claim, you would not receive anything. Similarly if you were to split up, you have no right to any financial support.
It is therefore really important that you seek appropriate legal advice and your partner puts a will in place. Also, it would need to be considered how he owns the house with the wife. If he owns is as what is known as joint tenants (as opposed to tenants in common), it would pass automatically to his wife. On the assumption the house is his main asset, that is therefore an important consideration.
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Kim Marshall
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Re: Legal family advice

Postby Kim Marshall » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:49 am

I am a Family Law Solicitor and would echo the advice for your partner to put in place a will as soon as possible and name you as a beneficiary under his insurance policies etc. He should finalise his divorce so his assets are separated from those of his wife. Sensible advice about checking how the house is currently owned.
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K1999
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Re: Legal family advice

Postby K1999 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:59 am

I am not a lawyer. Reading above, would it not be simpler if he took out insurance & put in trust to you. That way you would receive the insurance separate from his estate and you would not have to fight in the courts?
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Sky1111
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Re: Legal family advice

Postby Sky1111 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:01 pm

I don’t usually comment on this but I have sign up in order to comment.
I am not a lawyer and have no advice as to what your rights are. But It sounds to me like some of it could be resolved with honest communication.
For example the work life insurance: for most companies it is very easy to add a dependent. (It was a 5min process to add my babies when they were born). You do not need a will and you do not need to communicate to anyone except your internal HR.
Do you know why he doesn’t want to add you or your toddler?

I would personally start from there before discussing about savings or will as it would be a lot easier to solve from an admin point of view.

And I would definitely get advice from a lawyer.

Good luck
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BBrush
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Re: Legal family advice

Postby BBrush » Mon Feb 18, 2019 9:42 am

Sorry for your situation - it doesn’t sound ideal! Definitely keep pushing and explain to him how it makes you feel with none of his affairs in order. Changing the life insurance beneficiary is a good idea to give you some peace of mind while you sort the divorce/will.

I’ve just drawn up a will with my fiancé (who is a divorcee). It turns out even ex-wives can make a claim on their ex-husband’s estate, so if/when he goes through the divorce, make sure you specifically exclude the ex-wife on his will and keep a letter with the will that states why she is excluded (state the financial settlement she received from the divorce). I didn’t know they’d have rights but they do, so something to be aware of!

Best of luck with it all, I hope your partner comes to his senses!
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