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Can Ex's New Partner Make Claims on My Property?

By: Emma Jones - Updated: 17 Aug 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Can Ex's New Partner Make Claims On My Property?

Q.

My wife and I have recently split up due to her committing adultery. She has since moved another man into what was our marital house. His name does not appear on any official bill or document or deed.

I am concerned that he may acquire some sort of rights to the property over time simply by his living at the address.

I pay the mortgage, as I have always done. The house is in my wife's and my name only.

(I.H, 10 February 2009)

A.

When a relationship breaks down not only are there the overwhelming emotions to deal with but also the practical and financial implications. Having moved out of the marital home because of your wife’s adultery it must be difficult to face her decision to move another man in. However, rest assured that this new man can have no claim over your property or any other joint possessions or investments that you have with your wife.

When an unmarried couple live together, whatever the circumstances, they do not have the same rights as a married couple. Many people believe in the idea of ‘common law’ relationships but cohabiting couples have no legal standing. If your wife and her new partner split up then he cannot make any claims on the property, even if he has been contributing towards the mortgage.

The only way that he would have any claim would be if your partner put his name on the deeds, but if this is jointly held with you then she would be unable to do so without your consent. The man may be living in your marital home, but that is all he can do with the property. He will be unable to claim any share of it.

A couple that are living together may decide to draw up a cohabitation agreement to protect or divide their assets if they split. However, these are still not recognised as legally binding and because the property is jointly owned by you, it would not be valid anyway. So, basically there is no way, unless your ex and her new partner decide to marry, that he will be able to lay any claim to your house.

As difficult as it may seem at the moment, the best thing you can do is try to talk to your ex-wife. Raise your concerns with her, explain what the law is and try to come to an agreement. It may be best for you both to consider selling the marital home so you can both start afresh. These are difficult and emotional decisions to make, but try and do them civilly and sensibly but also consider seeking legal advice.

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@Royston - have you divorced? If you haven't of if you haven't had a clean break divorce you might be able to. It would have to go to court though if your ex disagrees with your change of heart.
Aussy - 22-Aug-17 @ 3:54 PM
I divorced my wife 10 years ago but gave her 70% sale of our old marital home via mediation. She has now decided to sell for a vast amount , am I entitled to some of the 70% proceeds that I originally gave ? I gave this amount for the children and now they are older would like to give them the money as it was originally to keep a roof over their head .
Royston - 17-Aug-17 @ 1:24 PM
Me and and wife split up 5 years ago and I left with my clothing only (kids still lived there so I didn't want to take anything away). I'm now living with a new partner who owns her own house (my name isn't on as a joint owner), I have a car which is on HP and I've bought stuff for this house......when I apply for a divorce can my ex wife take any of my stuff
Rob - 15-Aug-17 @ 10:53 PM
chrisn - Your Question:
I wonder if anyone could help, my Son has lived with his partner for 10 years and they have been married for 2 years.They are now getting divorced.The house they lived in was his wife's with her previous husband, however my son has been the mortgage whilst he has been living with her.Would he have any claim against the property?

Our Response:
You can see more via the CAB link here which explains the legal differences between marriage and living together. If they have lived together and your son is on the mortgage, then he will be entitled to a share. However, he would need to seek professional legal advice in order to explore his options fully.
RelationshipExpert - 19-Jun-17 @ 10:16 AM
I wonder if anyone could help, my Son has lived with his partner for 10 years and they have been married for 2 years.They are now getting divorced.The house they lived in was his wife's with her previous husband, however my son has been the mortgage whilst he has been living with her.Would he have any claim against the property?
chrisn - 16-Jun-17 @ 9:19 AM
Lg- Your Question:
I was wondering if you could help, me and my partner recently split, we bought a house together however only her name went into the application as my credit wasn't great, I paid the mortgage for 7 years whilst she raised the family, she did verbally agree to give me money as a fair compromise for me leaving the house, however I'm concerned that she may not keep her promise so I've read up that I could log a matrimonial interest at the land registry which means she wouldn't be able to see it until I remove the interest I'm thinking this is a way for me to safe guard the money I put into the house. Can you advise please. Thank you

Our Response:
You can register an interest in the property, yes. This is only becomes relevant if your ex is wishing to sell. Really, you would be better to come to a decision mutually and see if she will agree to buy you out. However, if your ex can't and the children are yours, then it becomes more tricky. Plus the court may see this as your financial contribution to the family. Also, it is unlikely a court would force her to sell because it will always act upon what it thinks is in the best interests of your children. Mediation may be the best process to try to come to a mutual financial agreement.
RelationshipExpert - 26-May-17 @ 12:01 PM
I was wondering if you could help, me and my partner recently split, we bought a house together however only her name went into the application as my credit wasn't great, I paid the mortgage for 7 years whilst she raised the family, she did verbally agree to give me money as a fair compromise for me leaving the house, however I'm concerned that she may not keep her promise so I've read up that I could log a matrimonial interest at the land registry which means she wouldn't be able to see it until I remove the interest I'm thinking this is a way for me to safe guard the money I put into the house. Can you advise please. Thank you
Lg - 25-May-17 @ 6:10 PM
Corriebaby - Your Question:
Hi My husband and I divorced in August 2015, after being separated since July 2012.We sold our marital home and split the proceeds 50/50 and we each bought our own house. My house is in my name on the mortgage and the deeds.He now claims my house is his by law. Is this correct? His name does not appear anywhere on any paperwork relating to the property.

Our Response:
If you have divorced and you have bought your own house with the proceeds, and his name is not on the deeds or mortgage, then your ex has no rights to this property.
RelationshipExpert - 12-May-17 @ 2:07 PM
Lanie - Your Question:
Hi. My partner is looking to divorce his ex so we ca get married. They have been separated 8 years were married for 6 together. She has a child whom is not his though he paid for his private schooling after he left the home until the child went to mainstream school 5 years ago. He is 17 next month. His ex wife remained in the marital home which I believe she has now sold without giving him a claim as he was on the mortgage but not deeds. To my understanding she is in a relatively well paid full time job. My partner is in the services and due to retire within the next 4 years. We gave 2 young children together and no assets other than a 12 year old car. Is his ex able to stake a claim on his pension and gratuity and if so what will the level be given that we have two children one of 5 and one of 2. I appreciate it's should of been looked at sooner though finances and health reasons of our youngest have prevented it thus far. I understand the divorce can be granted without question given the length of time passed. Thanks.

Our Response:
In this case, you may wish to seek advice from the Money Advice Service, please see link here and here., which should help answer your question.
RelationshipExpert - 12-May-17 @ 10:51 AM
Hi My husband and I divorced in August 2015, after being separated since July 2012. We sold our marital home and split the proceeds 50/50 and we each bought our own house. My house is in my name on the mortgage and the deeds. He now claims my house is his by law. Is this correct? His name does not appear anywhere on any paperwork relating to the property.
Corriebaby - 12-May-17 @ 9:19 AM
Hi. My partner is looking to divorce his ex so we caget married. They have been separated 8 years were married for 6 together. She has a child whom is not his though he paid for his private schooling after he left the home until the child went to mainstream school 5 years ago. He is 17 next month. His ex wife remained in the marital home which I believe she has now sold without giving him a claim as he was on the mortgage but not deeds. To my understanding she is in a relatively well paid full time job. My partner is in the services and due to retire within the next 4 years. We gave 2 young children together and no assets other than a 12 year old car. Is his ex able to stake a claim on his pension and gratuity and if so what will the level be given that we have two children one of 5 and one of 2. I appreciate it's should of been looked at sooner though finances and health reasons of our youngest have prevented it thus far. I understand the divorce can be granted without question given the length of time passed. Thanks.
Lanie - 11-May-17 @ 2:00 PM
charle - Your Question:
I bulit a house in spain before I met my ex wife she had no finacil input at all were holidayed there and thats it now she wants half how do I stand

Our Response:
Much depends upon how long you were married and other circumstances surrounding your joint finances. If you had a short marriage, and you bought the holiday home pre-marriage, then it is more likely to be classed as a non-marital asset which means you would not have to split it. If your marriage has been long and/or have children, and other properties then the lines become more blurred. Therefore, I suggest you seek legal advice.
RelationshipExpert - 21-Apr-17 @ 12:48 PM
i bulit a house in spain before i met my ex wife she had no finacil input at all were holidayed there and thats it now she wants half how do i stand
charle - 20-Apr-17 @ 8:10 PM
andy - Your Question:
I have owned a house for 20 years. I met a women had 2 children with her never married her and lived in separate houses from day one! she ask me to put her name on my deed for security solely for the 2 boys should anything happen to me! I agreed to this and we have since split up she now is taking me to court claiming she wants half the house that she has never lived in or ever contributed to! how do \i strand on this?

Our Response:
In this case you would have to seek professional legal advice due to the complexity of the issue.
RelationshipExpert - 22-Mar-17 @ 11:22 AM
I have owned a house for 20 years. I met a women had 2 children with her never married her and lived in separate houses from day one! she ask me to put her name on my deed for security solely for the 2 boysshould anything happen to me! I agreed to this and we have since split up she now is taking me to court claiming she wants half the housethat she has never lived in or ever contributed to! how do \i strand on this?
andy - 21-Mar-17 @ 1:57 PM
Shine98 - Your Question:
The Clean Break Order (Consent Order) allows you to ensure that, following your divorce. Your ex-partner cannot go back to court to ask for more money or assets. The Clean Break Order is the only way that you can guarantee that any agreement you and your ex-partner may reach is enforceable by law and that no further claims can be made.Does this come into action if you were engaged and lived together over 16years, I worked with my partner he cheated on me now I'm financially in debt im struggling and his selling the house will I be able to sue him

Our Response:
There is a difference between marriage and co-habitation, please see CAB link here. I've pointed you in this general direction as I'm not quite sure what you are asking and what you wish to sue him for.
RelationshipExpert - 13-Mar-17 @ 9:53 AM
The Clean Break Order (Consent Order) allows you to ensure that, following your divorce. Your ex-partner cannot go back to court to ask for more money or assets. The Clean Break Order is the only way that you can guarantee that any agreement you and your ex-partner may reach is enforceable by law and that no further claims can be made. Does this come into action if you were engaged and lived together over 16years, I worked with my partner he cheated on me now I'm financially in debt im struggling and his selling the house will I be able to sue him
Shine98 - 12-Mar-17 @ 1:21 AM
Yolo - Your Question:
I divorced and then bought a house in my own. Ex husband lives with me and he has contributed to the house but everything is under my name. Does he have a claim when he leaves? He keeps threatening he will file. I don't think he has a claim but I would like to. E sure and asking for advice. Thank you

Our Response:
Much depends upon how long he has lived under your roof and whether he thinks he has the right to claim a 'beneficial interest' please see CAB link here.
RelationshipExpert - 3-Mar-17 @ 10:12 AM
I divorced and then bought a house in my own. Ex husband lives with me and he has contributed to the house but everything is under my name.Does he have a claim when he leaves? He keeps threatening he will file.I don't think he has a claim but I would like to. E sure and asking for advice. Thank you
Yolo - 2-Mar-17 @ 3:36 AM
@GP - Did you have rights to the property when you divorced? Did your ex buy you out? Was your own divorce a clean break divorce? You would have to speak to a solicitor to find out. Jon.
JJ - 5-Jan-17 @ 9:49 AM
My husband and his ex-wife just sold their farm per judge's order. their divorce occurred 3 years ago. The title company says I have to sign paperwork at closing. Do I have any rights to proceeds from the sale?
GP - 4-Jan-17 @ 1:45 AM
Big - Your Question:
I have been married for 2 years and together for 4 years and left my wife 3 months ago, I have a 3 year old son with her. My question is I bought the house that she still lives in at the beginning of 2015, the house is in my name(only name on the mortgage deeds) and I paid the deposit. She is demanding I pay everything (all bills, her car till may next year) which is financially breaking me. She wants to file for divorce on grounds of adultery because I met some a few days after leaving her, any advice would be greatly appreciated as financially something has to give

Our Response:
If you were married at the time you bought the house, regardless of what 'you' paid, as you are married it will still be considered jointly owned. While you are not obliged to pay bills or for her car (if you have separated), you are legally obliged to pay towards the mortgage as otherwise the house may be repossessed. You will also be eligible to pay child maintenance. Therefore, I would seek legal advice in order to explore your options.
RelationshipExpert - 21-Dec-16 @ 1:00 PM
I have been married for 2 years and together for 4 years and left my wife 3 months ago, I have a 3 year old son with her. My question is I bought the house that she still lives in at the beginning of 2015, the house is in my name(only name on the mortgage deeds) and I paid the deposit. She is demanding I pay everything(all bills, her car till may next year) which is financially breaking me. She wants to file for divorce on grounds of adultery because I met some a few days after leaving her, any advice would be greatly appreciated as financially something has to give
Big - 20-Dec-16 @ 10:10 PM
Truckstar - Your Question:
I've moved in with my partner and son and her ex husband is trying to get a forced sale on the property.I have declare my finances on a form E but does her ex husband have any rights over any my assets as I own my own property.

Our Response:
No, your partner's ex husband has no rights over your self-owned property.
RelationshipExpert - 7-Nov-16 @ 12:25 PM
I've moved in with my partner and son and her ex husband is trying to get a forced sale on the property. I have declare my finances on a form E but does her ex husband have any rights over any my assets as I own my own property.
Truckstar - 6-Nov-16 @ 7:32 PM
sare - Your Question:
My husband and I split up a year ago. I have moved into rented accommodation with our two kids. We built and moved into our home 12 years ago. We have been married for 9 years. Although my name is not on the mortgage I have asked for half the equity in the house which he has declined. As I understand I have the right to ask for this as it was the matrimonial home. He is now moving in his new partner in and they are expecting twins. I suppose what I want to know is, Am I entitled to any of the equity and will the new partner now have any entitlement?

Our Response:
If you are married and have children, then by rights you have a claim on the house, especially if the house was not a pre-marital asset, meaning your husband owned it, or put up the capital prior to marriage. I would seek legal advice regarding this asap, as it is less likely you could force your ex to sell once his new partner moves in and there are children involved. Your ex's new partner will be able to register an interest on the property if they have children and stay together for a good length of time. However, despite this, you still have a claim, but you would have to take the matter to court if your husband refuses to buy you out.
RelationshipExpert - 13-Oct-16 @ 11:54 AM
My husband and I split up a year ago. I have moved into rented accommodation with our two kids. We built and moved into our home 12 years ago. We have been married for 9 years. Although my name is not on the mortgage I have asked for half the equity in the house which he has declined. As I understand I have the right to ask for this as it was the matrimonial home. He is now moving in his new partner in and they are expecting twins. I suppose what I want to know is, Am I entitled to any of the equity and will the new partner now have any entitlement?
sare - 12-Oct-16 @ 2:25 PM
Hi my ex husband has remarried. Both our names are on the deeds, we have not sorted out the finically side of our divorce. Does his new wife have any claim on the property. I pay all the bills, mortgage and repair bills. Two children under 18 envolved. Kind regards
Finn - 3-Oct-16 @ 2:16 PM
berley - Your Question:
HiI sold my house and the money l made from the sale went into a new property, my ex partner moved in with me for a while and paid towards the mortgage and bills,the mortgage is in my name, we split up 8 months ago, l am now selling the property is he entitled any money when the property is sold

Our Response:
Much depends upon how much your ex put into the property financially and whether he contributed significantly to any improvements etc. However, it is unlikely if the mortgage is registered in your name and the relationship was short. Therefore, unless he has asked for money, sought legal advice, registered an interest and/or you agreed at some point to give him some money should you sell, then it's highly unlikley he will have any recourse to interfere with your sale.
RelationshipExpert - 8-Aug-16 @ 10:17 AM
Hi I sold my house and the money l made from the sale went into a new property, my ex partner moved in with me fora while and paid towards the mortgage and bills,the mortgage is in my name, we split up 8 months ago, l am now selling the property is he entitled any money when the property is sold
berley - 7-Aug-16 @ 7:54 AM
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