Warning: Divorcees could have to pay extra stamp duty

The government has introduced an extra stamp duty for people who already have an interest in property. People buying a house who have their name on a property will now often have to pay an additional 3% of the cost of a new house in extra stamp duty.

This can cause you problems if you are getting or have recently got divorced.

Imagine the following scenario;

You agree that your ex-partner will retain the family house, in joint names, until the children finish education.  This is quite a common arrangement, sometimes called a Mesher order.

Faye Bentley of Diane Genders Solicitors in Lincoln explained “This new extra stamp duty will really bite in these circumstances.  It means that the partner who has left will have to pay the normal stamp duty plus another 3% of the value of their new home as well.”

“Before this change in the law, the partner who has left might have still been able to buy an alternative home for themselves.  They will still have the option of doing so but will likely have to pay the additional 3% extra stamp duty as well.

“There are exceptions – if the former family home sells within 18 months of buying the new property then the extra stamp duty might be returned, for example.”

“The new extra stamp duty will have to be considered carefully either when reaching an agreement or when asking a court to decide what should happen to the matrimonial finances.  While family law judges might know about this new rule it is not their duty to protect you from it if you are acting in person.”

“This demonstrates why it is important to take legal advice when thinking about or going through divorce and separation.  While there is a lot of information available online there are still many pitfalls and traps awaiting the unwary couple.”

If you are thinking about or going through divorce or separation, or know somebody who is, then get in touch with Diane Genders Specialist Divorce Solicitors.  We can give you the advice you need.

You can email us confidentially by CLICKING HERE or calling 01522 516500 and asking to meet with one of our experienced family law solicitors.