June 28, 2023
This was a long running financial remedy case, where the husband was found to have materially failed to disclose his assets on two separate occasions. Established case law enabled the judge hearing the matter on the second occasion to restrict the court’s consideration to the non-disclosed assets only. The Court of Appeal found this approach to be wrong in the circumstances of this particular case because the process could not be confined to a single issue. The Wife had made unforeseen additional contributions to the welfare of the family since the first settlement had been reached in 2010. The Husband’s conduct then caused unnecessary delay in the Wife achieving finality to her claim. The Husband’s fraudulent non-disclosure in 2016 (particularly in the context of his separate non-disclosure in 2015) was so far reaching as to require the Judge to consider the entire financial landscape anew; not necessarily that the Wife would achieve a higher settlement, but she was entitled to her ‘blank page’. The matter was remitted to the lower court to be re-heard.
This is a useful case because it is authority for the principle that in dealing with financial remedy cases the family court retains a wide flexibility to adapt or enable the procedure to fit the case. It was held to be inappropriate here to fetter the exercise of judicial discretion.
Read more about this case here.
If you need help to settle your financial claim following relationship breakdown, contact Mavis on 020 8885 7986 for an appointment with Aysen, or one of the solicitors in the family team.
If you have a family case where you require some advice or representation, please contact Mavis for an appointment with a family solicitor on 020 8885 7986.