Jointly Owned Property : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread

My former partner (unmarried) and I separated in May 2000 and we jointly own a property, under mortgage from NatWest. My solicitor has written him numerous letters asking his intentions re the property but he never responds. At the time, I was geared up to fight it through the courts, until I realised that being on Legal Aid, this was would constitute a statutory charge being placed on the property. However,I am no longer receiving legal aid but want this property issue resolved urgently for the sake of my 2 young children. He has stopped contributing towards his share of the mortgage and I am paying this solely on my own. Fortunately, I can afford to do so, but on a point of principle, why should I? I have spoken with numerous legal eagles and no one seems able to offer me a solution. There does not appear to be any way of forcing him to sign it over to me, albeit for a financial sum. He is in huge amounts of debt, so much so that his child maintenance is now being collected via his salary so you'd think he'd be glad of one less debt!

I have spoken with my lender who were absolutely no use. They told me they don't care who pays the mortgage, so long as it's paid! What can I do? I am considering issuing a County Court Summons against him for his mortgage contributions, but this is not a long term solution. Can anyone at all offer me any advice? I am absolutely desperate.


-- Pauline Sampson (, June 07, 2001


Her's an idea - sue him for the amount of money you have so far paid over which represents what he should have paid. Dont bother with a solicitor, just issue the summons yourself on form N1 and pay the fee. Let him file an answer if he can, if he does not, then you get judgment in default and move to step 2. If he defends and there is a hearing, I doubt that the Judge will have much sympathy for him particularly if you produce evidence at the hearing of his liability and show that you have been meeting his liability to keep a roof over your head. When you win, move to step 2

Step 2 is to issue either a garnishee against his bank which siezes money in his bank account, but you need to time it so his wages are in when the garnishee gets to the bank in which his account is held. Or alternatively apply for Attachment of Earnings against his wages.

All these steps can be taken by the lay person, you dont need a solicitor - see your County Court staff for all the forms and helpful booklets and do it yourself. Court staff will not give you legal advice but will help you get the paperwork right.

I dont mind if you contact me by e-mail for further help if you want.

-- David J. Button (, June 07, 2001.

Er...good idea in principle but if he isn't paying now he won't pay then. Taking these blokes to court is all well and good, but when they behave like pond life at this early juncture, slithering further down the evolutionary ladder is the only way they go. Having been in what sounds like a spookily identical situation, he will simply change jobs - which means you have to start all over again with the courts - or he will go bankrupt on you as soon as it heats up in his amoeba filled habitat. My goodness, a touch of bitterness crept through there I think.

Your best option is simply to beat him to it. Sell the house, for which course of action you will need a Court Order - make sure it's not for a loss - just break even if you can - and walk away. Forget the whole nasty mess and start again on your own. If there is substantial negative equity, or arrears, the BS will not allow it to be signed over to you in your own name, unless you can demonstrate that you can easily manage the mortgage and everything else. My Lender flatly refused to do this, albeit in my case I was trying to get my ex to take the debt/property (which he could easily afford), but you can try. I wish you the very best of luck.

-- Too scared to say (, June 09, 2001.

I assume that its you that is living in this property and he's left and living elsewhere. If so, then really your best bet is a solicitor. You need to find one who specialises in family work. Look for the logo that says "Family lawyers" they're specialists.

What you and your solicitor need to do is work out how much you'd need to pay him to take over his share of the property. Perhaps the idea of a lump sum and freedom from responsibility will be enough to tempt him to co-operate.

-- pendle (, June 12, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ