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Divorce

The importance of ensuring that all financial matters are finalised at the time of divorce was clearly demonstrated earlier this year in the case of Wyatt v Vince.

By way of background, Mr Vince and Ms Wyatt met as students in their early 20s and married in 1981. The pair had a son together and lived a New Age traveller lifestyle before separating in 1984 and divorcing in 1992. Mr Vince set up his company, Ecotricity, in 1995 some ten years after the pair had split. He is now worth an estimated £107m.

As there was no evidence that financial claims against each other on divorce were dismissed, the potential to claim still existed and so in May 2011 Ms Wyatt issued an application for financial remedy.

Initially struck out by the Court of Appeal for being hopeless, the Supreme Court overruled and has decided that Ms Wyatt is able to pursue a financial claim against her former husband because there was no evidence that, at the time of the divorce, any financial orders were sought or made. She has not remarried so her claims for maintenance remain ‘live’.

The Supreme Court judges have pointed out that Ms Wyatt faces formidable difficulties in seeking to establish that a financial order should be made in her favour and that any award may not be a significant sum, regardless, this ruling essentially paves the way for anyone without a completed financial order to bring a claim against their former spouse regardless of how long ago they divorced.

For advice in relation to financial remedy upon divorce or other family matters please contact Sarah on 01664 563162 or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) because, who wants to be fighting over finances thirty years after separating from a spouse?


Oldham Marsh Page Flavell are Solicitors in Melton Mowbray.



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