In two recent family law decisions of the Supreme Court, the court has allowed appeals in cases where the husbands had deliberately been untruthful either by fraud or by non-disclosure about the full extent of their financial circumstances. The court has emphasised that the fundamental principle that a party in divorce financial proceedings must make a full and frank disclosure of their financial circumstances is a principle which will be upheld. Where a settlement has been entered into on the basis of a lack of such disclosure, or through fraud, then the court will be prepared to overturn the settlement and scrutinise it for further consideration.
Nothing but the truth…?
Anyone who seeks to achieve a settlement unfairly in their favour by a lack of full and frank disclosure, by misrepresenting the state of their finances or by fraud, runs a very high risk of having that settlement set aside even if agreed by the other party. The court has made it clear it will, in some circumstances, be willing to re-open court orders previously made. Putting all your cards on the table is what the court expects all parties to do. Anything less is likely to mean that your “clean break” order is likely not to be the end of the story!
How can Wrigley Claydon help?
If you have previously agreed a divorce settlement but have reason to believe your ex spouse has not disclosed their full financial circumstances, please get in touch with the Wrigley Claydon family law department. Similarly, if you are the party being pursued by your ex spouse or if you know you were not 100% honest about your financial situation during your original divorce settlement, our divorce lawyers can advise you on the best way forward.
If you are currently separated and looking to advance to a divorce, please contact us so we can assist, advise and represent you accordingly during the divorce process.