MY husband and I have been separated for 6 years. I don’t know where he is. I now want a divorce. I tried at York as we were married in England but they would not deal with the application as I had no address for him. There are no property or financial issues to deal with. How can I proceed if at all?

You live in Scotland so you can use the Scottish courts – your local sheriff court. You can go about it in a number of ways.

You can explain and ask the court to advertise the divorce writ on the walls of the court. You can ask the court to let you advertise in a suitable newspaper.

If ex does not respond within 3 weeks the court will grant your divorce. Or you can instruct a private investigator and they will most likely find his current address, you can then proceed – still in the Scottish court.

IF a man remarries after the death of his first wife what rights has the second wife got on his estate? Can he leave her out and will the entire estate to the children of his first marriage?

Yes, up to a point. If there is no will, second wife gets the house, contents and a sum of money before the kids get anything. But making a will overcome this and leave all to kids, though wife always retains a legal claim on a third of the moveable estate (that is everything excluding the house) even if excluded in the will. Then she has no automatic right to stay in the house unless she has her name on the title.

I INHERITED my aunt’s flat – she died this year. The flat is in her sole name. I took out a personal secured loan recently on the inherited flat and a month later received a letter from HMRC saying that I owe £16k inheritance tax. I have no idea what this is about.

Strictly speaking it is not you who is due the inheritance tax but the estate from which the flat was inherited. But if the tax is due, then the Government is able to utilise assets in the estate to pay it, so has in effect first call.

However, it is unusual for a flat to be actually passed over to the beneficiary without the tax already having been paid. You will need to ask the executor of the estate how this has come about, and why tax has not been paid if due.

My car was stolen and I got a payout from the insurance company. The car has now been recovered. Can I get it back? I would pay back the money to the insurer for it.

I suspect not, as you will have signed a form on settlement of your claim that the insurance co has the right to your car, indeed your insurance policy will set out the rules applying. But do ask them – they may be prepared to sell the car to you, though not necessarily at the amount of your settlement.