Posted by Patrick Hart, Partner
On 1 September 2016 Withy King LLP merged with Royds LLP. The trading name for the merged firm is Royds Withy King. All content produced prior to this date will remain in the name of the firms pre-merger.
Husband fails in his attempt to challenge divorce settlement
The ex-wife of a wealthy businessman has been told she can keep her £3.5million divorce settlement.
Karen Hart had been awarded a substantial share of the family’s £10million fortune following the collapse of her marriage to the property tycoon John Hart.
Mr Hart had attempted to challenge the original settlement, which he claimed was unfair on the grounds that his wife could now rely on financial support from her new partner.
Speaking at the Appeal Court, the 77-year-old said that the personal circumstances meant the sum that had been awarded was excessive.
The mum-of-two had hit back, arguing that she needed the money to remain financially independent.
Sir James Munby, president of the family division, has this month come down in favour of Mrs Hart’s argument, in a ruling which could have implications in similar cases.
The Judge had conceded that it was a difficult decision to reach.
“If one gets it wrong one way, the wife is left stranded. If one gets it wrong the other way, the husband is aggrieved.
“I do not consider that the presence of [new partner] Mr Chubb in the life of Mrs Hart should diminish her needs.”
The couple had married in 1987 and divorce proceedings were set in motion five years ago. Prior to the split they had lived in an expensive property in a village just outside of Birmingham, as well as owning properties in Spain and Miami.
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