The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that a husband does not have to increase maintenance payments to his former wife after she made a series unwise investments following their divorce.
The parties were married for around 15 years before separating in 2002. The wife received £230,000 to satisfy her capital claims and it was agreed that the husband would pay £1,100 in maintenance per month.
It was expected that the wife would use the capital to buy a property and following a series of property purchases, found herself in debt. The wife then applied to the court to increase her maintenance payments and the husband applied to discharge or decrease the payments. Both applications were dismissed.
The wife appealed to the Court of Appeal and was successful, the payments being increased to £1,441 per month. The husband appealed that decision and The Supreme Court allowed his appeal, unanimously ruling in his favour.
THB's Family Lawyer Alexandra Dancey-Tucker said "The husband’s maintenance payments will continue at £1,100 demonstrating a reluctance to compensate a former spouse for unwise financial decisions after divorce. It could be said following this decision that it is expected that each party take responsibility for their own financial decisions and that a former spouse cannot be held accountable."
The press summary of the decision can be found here.
The full Judgment is also available here.