Many divorcees feel that judges have given them a raw deal when dividing up marital assets. They may or may not be right about that but, as one case recently reviewed by Sally Brogden strikingly showed, it makes much better sense for them to seek swift professional advice than to sit on their hands dwelling on what might have been.
The case concerned a middle-aged couple whose relationship lasted for almost 15 years and resulted in two children prior to their divorce. Their assets comprised over £400,000 yielded from the sale of their former matrimonial home and the husband’s shares in two companies, which were valued at about £6.2 million.
Following a hearing, a district judge ordered the husband to pay the wife a lump sum of over £3 million within five years. Pending payment, he was required to pay interest on that sum at 4 per cent over base rate. Together with £4,750 a month in maintenance, he was ordered to pay her 25 per cent of any bonuses he received and 50 per cent of any dividends. She was awarded 75 per cent of the proceeds of the property sale and he was required to pay the children’s school fees.