Interested to hear from anyone who may have had a settlement altered of contested after a long period - i.e. had an original settlement and court ruling changed - where it has been deemed unfair on one of the people?
Have been told after an initial enquiry to a solicitor that once the agreement has been set by the court it is not contestable (except immediately)
Just wondered if anyone has experience - heard anything etc.
Not too sure what you mean by this enquiry. It is always possible for a Court to vary an order which provides for spousal maintenance, or discharge it altogether, on the grounds of changed circumstances.
But lump sums, and capital provision, are a different matter altogether. A spouse cannot keep on making multiple applications for lump sums. What I think your solicitor might have had in mind was a case called Barder v Barder, where a wife was awarded a lump sum, but then killed the children and committed suicide. The result would have been that the lump sum, intended to benefit the wife, would have gone to her mother. The Court set the order aside, but laid down strict conditions, one of which was that the application to set aside had to be made without undue delay.
I have one that is now 10 years old and my children are now age 18 and 20, both going into full time education. If you are refering to a consent agreement, I too wonder if these are contestable, and need that advice myself, paticularly as by September of next year, neither child will be at home.
Hi, I was in court yesterday with my barrister and my solictor at great cost defending my maintenance order which was part of my Consent Order from my divorce 6 years ago. It is the second time he has tried to reduce maintenance. Always after we have had an argument and fortunatley this time he had nothing to support his case and it was dismissed by the judge and I was awarded costs to the tune of 6600 pounds.
However I need to know if he can appeal so if anyone knows the answer to that I will sleep better at night, but in answer to your question. Yes he can ask for a variation of the maintenance section of a Consent Order and yes he can change contact.
However most solicitors put a "Clean Break" clause in the Consent Order which means that once the settlement over the household finances are agreed (house, pensions, endowments and contents) then you have no right to go back and claim more money from them.
Hope this helps and hopefully someone can answer my question
Short answer to your question, madam, is that your ex can appeal, but there is a time limit of 14 days so hopefully after that you will sleep better at night.
There are always two sides to every story, of course, but from the point of view of a payer of maintenance ( and I have been, for the last 24 years ) there are a number of difficulties with variation applications. One is that you don't necessarily know your ex's current circumstances, and therefore it is difficult to assess the chances of success. The second is that it possible to apply for an increase and get a reduction, or vice versa. The third is that a Court has, at least in theory, the power to capitalise a maintenance order.
For these reasons, applications for variation carry risks, and the only circumstances where it is pretty safe to apply is following retirement or redundancy of the payer, when a reduction becomes essential and the only question is by how much.