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Deprivation of capital & divorce, Universal Credit, etc.

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  • me, previous high earner, now earning very little, outside the UK in Asia
  • she, low earner, works term-time for £8.5k/year in the UK. Tax credits claim for about the same in respect of her + 2 children

Relevant LHA: ~£14,000 so a UC claim with housing would be worth more than £10k/yr more on top of the TC claim

Currently housing (and the rest) is paid from my savings (mostly in my name, some in hers, all controlled by me, she has no idea about finances at all, and is an English as second language speaker). Bills paid from joint current account.


  • if I close the joint current account, withdraw (online) the money from her ISA, and leave her with nothing (with a view to paying 'maintenance' from said capital to meet expenses), without a formal divorce or legally binding separation agreement, could she be found to have deprived herself of capital?
  • if she is found to have deprived herself of capital and is not eligible for UC, what happens to the existing tax credits claim?
  • if we executed a legal separation agreement or divorce, which left her with half the capital (currently in total £160k), then she would not be eligible for UC in the first instance, and should continue with her tax credits claim. However in the long run she would still end up on UC, sooner or later. In this case I presume that continuing with the current lifestyle would not constitute deprivation of capital. I.e. school fees (paid continuously since the age of 5), annual holidays (again a normal expense in our case). Obviously early payment of the school fees definitely WOULD be deprivation of capital
  • in a slightly different scenario, if I paid off the school fees prior to a divorce/separation agreement, this would make sense from my perspective in that there wouldn't be any complications down the line in terms of her changing her mind about the fees, because they would have already been paid. However perhaps my decision to do that for the purpose of 'not getting screwed in a divorce' could be held against her?
  • is there a general principle about what financial disclosure is expected in universal credit? I.e. would they ask for my or joint bank statements etc. (even though it's in her name)
Edited by divorceman123

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So basically you want to know how to commit/get away with fraud, while still having a good standard of living?

But on a side note, any account she is named on will have to be declared, as will any capital that is hers, if you remove it, she will still potentially be found to have the capital. You say the ISA is hers so this will definitely be DOC if you remove the funds, as it will have been done in order to obtain means tested benefits.

Her tax credit claim will close down once she makes her claim to UC and she will not be able to reclaim it.

Is she a British citizen. If not HRT could also cause issues.

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Just isn't going to work.

We could do with some help from you.



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the law allows the decision maker to assume anything they wish and that it is for you to prove otherwise. try doing the things you suggest and they will assume that you have a slalry of £100k and that any assets encashed are still available. Mkae a dishonest statement on the paperwork and you may well be prosecuted so iof there is no eligibility for benefits why try and engineer one other than to punish your poor wife as you seem hell bent on doing.

The same goes with things like prepayment of school fees to try and avoid a maintenance settlement further on down the line. Family courts are well known to ignoring any arrangement they dont like and will usually make a maintenance order even if the other party stands in court and says they dont want one as the  courts weont let them make a bad decision that would cause the state to fork out to correct it.

lastly yes there is more than a general principle, you can be sent down for contempt if you dont  hand over everything when asked to so you read the forms and supply all of the info. Even bank accounts with no monies in tht havent been used for 6 years must be identified or even a valid claim will be dismissed by both the decision maker and the appeals tribunal

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