Non-matrimonial assets: Looking to the future

Ellen Walker discusses a case concerned with multiple income streams, the application of the sharing principle and the approach to top-up maintenance orders ‘The court does not use the statutory formula when awarding top-up child maintenance, but will look a range of factors, including the child’s needs.’ In CB v KB [2019], Mostyn J provided …
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Pre-nuptial agreements: Agreeing to disagree

Vikkie Chetcuti examines case law developments on pre-nuptial agreements, in particular as to legal advice, jurisdiction clauses, needs and sharing, in the post-Radmacher era ‘In Brack the Court of Appeal grappled with the issue of whether the mere existence of a valid pre-nuptial agreement meant the court was constrained as a matter of course from …
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Financial provision: Sharing the burden

Charles Eastwood discusses when it may be fair for a party to use capital awarded following the application of the sharing principle to generate income ‘The court will always need to look at all the relevant circumstances of each case when deciding whether and how a party should fairly be using their free capital to …
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Pre-nups and private client: Take note

Mark Pawlowski considers a recent decision on the enforceability of pre-nuptial agreements ‘It was essential that both parties should have entered into the agreement of their own free will without undue influence, fraud or misrepresentation, and with a full appreciation of its implications.’ The recent Court of Appeal decision in Versteegh v Versteegh [2018] has …
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International Focus: Well-prepared

Suzanne Kingston reviews recent developments in the courts’ approach to marital agreements ‘Where a pre-nuptial agreement has a clear purpose, and that purpose is understood by both parties (who have received advice and have an understanding what they are agreeing to give up), it is more likely to be upheld.’ If 2016 taught us anything …
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Pre-Nuptials: No excuses

Camilla Thornton examines case law post-Radmacher where a party has sought to overturn the terms of a nuptial agreement ‘Only in cases where the parties’ circumstances have changed in a way that was not anticipated will the courts look carefully at the fairness of justifying a pre-nuptial agreement entered into some time ago.’ It has …
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Periodical Payments: Future proofing

Fiona Wood summarises the courts’ approach to periodical payments orders and the limited circumstances in which a stepped order will be appropriate ‘The decision in Aburn illustrates the difficulties that arise when trying to predict what will happen in the future.’ In Aburn v Aburn [2016], a smaller money case where a stepped periodical payments …
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Standard Of Living: Lifestyle factors

Hazel Wright and Phoebe Sutton suggest that despite the provisions of section 25 the standard of living of the parties is becoming less relevant ‘It is hard to see future courts awarding periodical payments based on the standard of living in the great majority of marriages.’When family lawyers of a certain generation die, they will …
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Periodical Payments: Road to independence

Lisa Bray summarises the current case law on joint lives periodical payments orders and considers whether there is an increasing trend towards term orders ‘While the starting point is to put each party on the road to independence, the reality is that in recent years we have seen many judges showing a reluctance to make …
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Periodical Payments: Short-term solution

Camilla Thornton analyses recent decisions on maintenance and whether joint lives maintenance orders are facing extinction ‘A spousal maintenance award is properly made where the evidence shows that choices made during the marriage have generated hard future needs on the part of the claimant.’ There seems to have been a sea-change in recent years with …
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