Landmark Divorce Ruling on Hidden Money


29 July, 2010

Judith Wright

Forbes Solicitors is warning divorcing parties against using documents obtained without the other party's permission following a groundbreaking case in the Court of Appeal.

Up until today, information a husband or wife came across showing the other party was hiding money during Divorce Proceedings, could be copied, used and put before the Courts as evidence. Today the Court of Appeal has reversed this principle, which was originally brought about with the intention to help the financially weaker party.

Judith Wright, Senior Family Law Solicitor at Forbes Solicitors' Preston office comments, "This is a groundbreaking Case, as from now on, any future attempt by one side in a Divorce Case to take documents without permission could result in potentially heavy Costs Orders or in fact Criminal Proceedings."

In the past ten years, the Law on Divorce has moved from meeting the financially weaker party's "reasonable needs" to giving 50% of all funds built up during the marriage as a starting point.

Unfortunately, an unintended consequence of this has been to incentivise the financially stronger party to lie as they believe that every pound hidden will save parting with 50% of it.


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