Brief Marriage – Equal Division of assets in divorce

A Court of Appeal ruling today means that couples who have experienced a short marriage are no longer entitled to an equal Division of assets in divorce.

Energy trader Julie Sharp has won an appeal to reduce the payout that her ex-husband receives, her successful argument being that a short marriage should not equal half of the matrimonial pot.

The previous principle after a ruling in 2000 was an equal division of matrimonial assets unless there was a sufficient reason to depart from this presumption.

Julie had argued that she had brought the majority of the wealth into the relationship and that the parties had kept their wealth separate, for example, alternating buying meals out, therefore showing an intention to keep their finances separate.

The husband’s initial pay out of £2.725 million has today been reduced to £2million. Whilst this is still a substantial amount of money, the decision will have a significant impact on future financial claims by childless couples who have separated following a brief marriage.

If you have recently separated or would like some advice on financial matters and the division of assets in divorce, please contact us for more information.

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