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Wigan Family Law Blog

Shared parenting is not necessarily an equal share

The introduction of a new bill that is aimed at enhancing the rights of children to stay in contact with both of their parents after a divorce may have raised unrealistic expectations, according to a retired judge. Parents in Manchester who are going through a divorce and who believe that the changes to the 1989 Children's Act will guarantee them equal access to their child should be aware that judges will still hand down rulings that they believe are in the best interests of the child.

The Shared Parenting Bill is the Government's proposal to ensure that, after a divorce, the parent who is not the main care giver of the child is still able to be involved in the child's life. Sanctions for failing to adhere to court orders can include the confiscation of documents such as passports or driving licences and even being subjected to movement restrictions, such as curfews. The bill has been criticised by a number of organisations, including the Law Society.

Sheik dies before making £75 million divorce payment

Residents in the Greater Manchester area who had been following the divorce battle between the former super model and her billionaire sheik ex-husband may be interested in the latest development after the ex-husband died before handing over the agreed settlement payment. The Saudi had been receiving medical care for terminal cancer in Zurich and passed away a few days before he was legally bound to make the divorce payment to his former spouse.

The billionaire had divorced her under Sharia law without her knowledge in 2014, and she has been battling to secure a divorce settlement in the Family Division of High Court in London for over three years. Their marriage had broken down in 2012 after her ex-husband had taken a young Lebanese model as his second wife. The High Court had ruled that his ex-wife should receive a needs-based divorce payment of £75 million, but the sheik died a week before the due date of the settlement.

Billionaire dies two weeks after ex-wife wins divorce award

A former supermodel's astounding £75m award by the U.K. high court in her divorce settlement may be delayed. The model, Christina Estrada, was married to a Saudi billionaire, Sheikh Walid Juffali. He passed away just two weeks after the court ordered him to pay the money to Estrada from cancer in Zurich, where he had been receiving treatment.

According to reports, if Juffali had succumbed before the high court had issued its final order, Estrada would not have received anything. Because Juffali's health had been rapidly failing, Estrada requested the court to move the hearing date up. Juffali was not present for the hearing as he was in Zurich receiving his cancer treatment.

£150,000 child maintenance demand refused by judge

The judge hearing a case in London's High Court has rejected the claim from the former spouse of a millionaire businessman for £150,000 in child maintenance. Parents in the Greater Manchester area may be aware that child maintenance is intended to help meet the costs of the day-to-day living expenses of the children. In this instance, the children's mother included the expense of hiring after school private tutors at a cost of £60,000 each year.

The judge awarded £70,000 in child support and noted that the children's mother was an advocate of the hothousing method of education. The extra financial support for after school private tutors that the mother was asking for would provide an intense regime of study to advance the children's education beyond the norm for their age. When making her ruling, the judge observed that, with their current study schedule, the couple's two teenagers were allowed very little time to enjoy their childhood and that the private tutors were not something that they needed.

Divorce row puts million-pound estate in jeopardy

Manchester couples undergoing separations may be interested in a divorce case that observers say is one of the most protracted in the nation's history. According to reports, an airline pilot who is currently married to his fourth wife is embroiled in a battle with his third spouse. At the heart of the disagreement lie the man's allegations that he's spent around two decades making support payments for his ex-wife's daughter. He believes the 18-year-old isn't his child even though the mother claims to possess DNA evidence to the contrary.

If news sources are accurate this case could result in court costs that deplete the pilot's fortune. The man argued that his ex-wife fraudulently switched the DNA samples and even denies that the signature on the daughter's birth certificate is actually his.

Wife wants share of husband's sexual abuse compensation

A woman in England has petitioned for a share of the compensation that her soon-to-be ex-husband received for being sexually abused as a child. The 41-year-old woman wants the sexual abuse compensation to be considered a marital asset and divided as part of the divorce settlement. Her 45-year-old husband wants to donate all of the money to charity.

When he was a child, the woman's husband was subjected to hundreds of incidents of sexual abuse from a family friend. The perpetrator spent three years in jail, and the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority awarded the victim compensation in the amount of £175,000. However, the man says that he never wanted to profit from what happened to him and preferred to leave the money in a charitable trust to help other sexual abuse victims.

High Court battle over £116 million fortune

The multi-million pound divorce battle between the founder of the online grocery company Ocado and his wife has commenced. Following the decision of the judge in the proceedings, the details of the hearing will not be revealed to the public until after a judgement has been passed. Shoppers in the Greater Manchester area who have used Ocado to buy their groceries are among 500,000 customers of the retailing company which is the largest of its kind in the world.

The businessman attended Manchester University before working as a trader in an investment bank. He founded Ocado in 2000, the year after he married his wife. The couple have enjoyed a lavish lifestyle with a holiday property in France, a £15 million family home in London's Highgate and a social calendar including events with Sir Philip Green and Gwyneth Paltrow. The High Court divorce battle will decide how a fortune of £116 million will be divided between the parties.

Divorce battle of Russia's richest man

The former wife of the Russian billionaire, Vladimir Potanin, has said that she may bring her divorce battle to London if the Russian Supreme Court rejects her appeal of a court ruling there. Greater Manchester residents may be interested to know that Forbes has declared him to be Russia's richest man and that he is estimated to be worth £10 billion. The couple were married for 30 years and he has offered a divorce settlement worth £32 million.

London has been the location of a number of high profile divorce battles as a result of the legal principle in U.K family law that the homemaker is the equal partner to the income earner in a marriage. The former wife of the Russian mining tycoon said that laws protecting women in Russia were at times ineffective. She claimed that when he first announced his decision to divorce her, he said she could have private health care and maintenance payments for their son. She is now battling for a settlement of £5 billion.

Settlement claim lodged long after the divorce

Homeowners in the Greater Manchester area who are acquainted with green energy companies may be interested to learn that the founder of Ecotricity has been forced to pay a settlement of £300,000 to the woman he divorced more than two decades ago. He had objected to the case being brought to the courts on the grounds that too much time had passed for her to make any claims for financial remedy, but his appeal was rejected.

The entrepreneur businessman met his former wife when they were students and the couple married in 1981. They lived an unorthodox lifestyle as New Age travelers until they separated a few years later and divorced in 1992. He said that allowing his ex-wife to make a claim based on a short relationship so long ago could set a precedent to many other divorced couples in a similar situation. The green energy company that he launched a few years after his divorce is now estimated to be worth over £100 million.

Saudi man in £238 million divorce battle

The Saudi billionaire who divorced his wife of sixteen years in Saudi Arabia by the Islamic procedure talaq is facing a divorce settlement claim worth nearly £240 million. Residents of the Greater Manchester area may be interested to hear that his former wife has said she requires this amount for the needs portion of her divorce settlement and she has yet to submit her full claim. Although lawyers for the man are already describing her demands as excessive, the judge hearing the case said that the decision on a needs claim was for the court to make.

Court documents show that the 54-year-old former Pirelli model is claiming her needs include almost £75 million for houses in England, £495,000 for cars, more than £1 million for art and an annual maintenance payment of over £6 million. Her lifestyle costs include the price of travelling by private jet between London and her California property which is worth an estimated £14 million. The settlement that she has been offered is far more modest and totals approximately £32 million.