Tag Archives: Simplified divorce

Divorce and your Will in Scotland

Will image

It is surprisingly common that the ex is left something in the Will. Even more startling is that people do not change their will, at all, after a divorce.

Up until the end of 2016, not changing your Will was an option. Divorce had no effect. Not any more! Now if you want your ex to benefit, you have to specify that you have taken the new law into account or the law will treat your ex as if he or she had died before you. This means a new Will or, at least, a change to your existing Will.

That’s advice but  why would someone not change their Will after divorce?

Life isn’t black and white. You can’t live with them but does that mean you lose all respect and affection? Not if my experience of advising clients is anything to go by!

I think there are 2 reasons.

The first is pragmatic and practical. This is a person with whom you have shared a life and, quite possibly, children. Particularly, if the children are young, the ex might well be the appropriate person to care for the them and, unless you can afford a trust, leaving something to your ex may be a reasonable way to ensure that your children benefit. By this I mean that, in Wills, it is all about the blood. My experience is that most of the time Wills only mention the family. If you believe that your ex will leave everything to the children, the thought process is that by leaving something to the ex it will eventually go to the kids. Only someone who knows another intimately can know that person, so you cannot say it is wrong.

The second is some lingering affection and respect and wish to ensure that, if you are out of the picture, the ex should not end up in poverty. Just because you cannot live with them does not mean they are bad people. This reason is especially so if there are no children to leave your estate to.

Anyway, if you are in this category, change your Will now!

Bruce de Wert cropped.and websize

 

I am a solicitor in private practice and Managing Director and owner of online websites where you can make Wills, Powers of attorney and even have a divorce.  I have appeared on the BBC and STV speaking about legal matters on a number of occasions.

 

Bruce de Wert

Inexpensive and easy Scottish separation agreements. Can it be done? Help needed.

 

Bruce de Wert

Bruce de Wert

Let us say that you have “separated” and everything is going swimmingly. You have, informally, agreed any current issues. Why on earth would you want to rock the boat? What is the point in making a formal agreement?

I feel like a party-pooper when I pose these questions….

  • Who is to say that whatever informal agreements that you have made will last?
  • Even if they did, what would happen if you were to die prematurely?
  • Where do kids fit in?
  • What if you want a divorce?
  • What about the future?
  • It is expensive to see a lawyer but will it cost you more not to see a lawyer?

You are where you are and it is not easy. The current way out is for both parties to see separate lawyers. This is time consuming, emotionally draining and, with two lawyers involved, usually, expensive.

It is not that the lawyers cause this but the very step of seeing separate lawyers focuses on the conflicts where there may well be a great deal of common ground.

I have an idea whereby the parties could, with some legal guidance, set out their common ground in a draft separation agreement. This would leave only those areas where there is real disagreement to be dealt with by lawyers. That would save money and stress.

In certain cases you could end up with a whole agreement although, as a lawyer, I would feel uneasy about it not being checked over for the stuff the things you may have forgotten about or are yet to crop up.

It is my goal to make something complex both easy and inexpensive, just as with MyScottishDivorce, MyScottishWill and MyScottishAttorney.

It can be done but I need a little help.

In the comments box, below, please let me have your thoughts about but not limited to:-

  • Would it help you?
  • Have you been through this process? How would this have made it easier?
  • What would make it easy?
  • What would you want from such a system?
  • What would it look like?
  • What would it cost?
  • Would you consider an agreement that was based upon legal principles that had not been checked, by lawyers, for your particular circumstances.

I shall be very grateful to all contributors and I look forward to the discussion.

Bruce de Wert

 

Claims after divorce in Scotland

Bruce de Wert cropped.and websize. with border

I have been asked by a lady whether she will have a claim on her ex-husband’s pension, after his death.

The circumstances were that she separated and there was no separation agreement. They subsequently divorced. There was a house which was jointly owned but her then husband was contributing towards the mortgage but she, subsequently, bought him out of that, after the divorce.

Her ex-husband has died and she wonders whether she would have a claim on the pension.

In Scotland, at least, the answer is a resounding no!

This question reveals 2 important issues about separation and divorce.

The first is that divorce is final. If you want to make a claim, negotiate a separation agreement (the cheapest method) or enter into a separation or divorce action. After the divorce, it is too late. I have had some who were desperate to remarry and I’ve had my work cut out persuading them that disclosing that will put them in a very weak position. Don’t be tempted!

The second is that some things survive a divorce. In this particular case, the pair owned a house together. That ownership is entirely separate from any issues of marriage. An old favourite were endowment policies which were also jointly owned assets. So, be careful that you do not leave any stone unturned when you are organising a separation agreement!

Bruce de Wert

If you have children under 16, I offer a swift and inexpensive divorce at  www.MyScottishDivorce.co.uk

Why is a Scottish separation agreement a good thing.

bruceI have just been asked by a chap whether a letter from a solicitor inviting him to enter into negotiations for a separation agreement should be ignored as he wishes to use my online divorce service to save money.

My answer has been that the opportunity to negotiate a separation agreement is to be grasped with both hands!

If the marriage is over, you have 2 options, negotiate or be sued.

If my correspondent has a very deep pocket then he might take the option of being sued but it could be an expensive one. Negotiation will, virtually always, be cheaper. I am not saying it will be cheap but, as soon as court action is initiated, it has a momentum all of it’s own and will eat up your funds.

Even worse for the chap concerned, his wife has legal aid. If he has any kind of earned income at all, he will not get legal aid and the whole costs of the process will fall on him with no chance of recovering anything even if he is “successful”.

As regards his wish to use my online service, it is designed to save money and time but only works after everything has been agreed with regard to money and children.

Anyone in this position should find a specialist solicitor and there is an easy way to locate one in Scotland using the Law Society of Scotland Find a Solicitor Service. Click the drop-down list to “find a solicitor by specialism” and then put in your own postcode. The Specialism that you are looking for is “family law”. This will bring up a list of solicitors who are recognised as being specialists.

Once everything is agreed, whether you have kids or not, I can offer a service.

The main service for those with children under 16 is at www.myscottishdivorce.co.uk

For those with no children under 16  it can be found at http://www.myscottishdivorce.co.uk/nochildrenunder16.php

Bruce de Wert

Married abroad? Want a divorce in Scotland?

I have been asked a number of times whether it is possible to divorce in Scotland, having been married abroad.

Take for instance this real life question: –

I got married in Newfoundland, Canada and have been legally seperated from my husband since 1999. I now live in Scotland! Can I get a divorce here without having to contact him? I don’t want money and our child is 22! Can you do the paperwork and if so at what cost? I don’t know where he lives anymore!

The answer depends upon whether you now live in Scotland, how long you have lived here and, sometimes, whether you intend to remain in Scotland for the rest of your life.

So, if you have lived here, permanently, for one year or you have lived here for 6 months and intend to remain here for the rest of your life, you can raise your action here.

This last question is a question of “domicile”.

The issue of the whereabouts of the husband not being known is dealt with by the courts and it is to be hoped that he should find out.

It is perfectly possible for the questioner to raise the action herself but for those who do not want to do that, I offer a fixed price service (including court fees) for £495 including VAT at http://www.myscottishdivorce.co.uk/nochildrenunder16.php

The only caveat is that if the husband does find out and wants to defend it (he may want some money even if she does not), no divorce can be granted until that issue is dealt with so, sadly, my fixed-price offer ends at that point! Of course, the “legal separation” to which she refers may cover that point.

 

Bruce de Wert

www.georgesons.co.uk

 

 

Powered by WordPress