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financial settlements: celebrity vs 'normal' peopl

  • abptn
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20 Mar 08 #17276 by abptn
Topic started by abptn
Can anyone explain why the precident set by McFarlane (2006, I think) has not been mentioned in relation to the recent McCarthney-Mills financial settlement? [ie that a short marriage is just as much a partnership as a longer one and so matrimonial assets should be viewed as equally divided from the start of the marriage]

In my recent divorce (following an 18 month marriage), this precident featured very heavily in the legal advice I received - ie I was told the judge was likely to view the matrimonial assets as being split equally, and factors such the child of our marriage living with me, my ex-husband's non-contribution during the course of the marriage being likely to 'tip the scales' to a situation in which I would receive 65/70% and he 30/35%. I was told this was a likely senaria despite all the materiminal assets (mainly house, but also some savings) having been brought to the marriage by me.

The McCartney-Mills ruling, on the other hand, appears to confirm that those leaving short marriages in which the bulk of the assets were acquired prior to the start of the
marriage by their former spouse can not expect to leave it with anything approaching a 50% share.

The descrepancy between my own experience and that of Paul McCartney and Heather Mills seems even less reasonable when you consider that giving my ex-husband a 30-35% share in the matrimonial assets would certainly have required me to sell my and my child's home whereas it seems likely a similar percentage ruling in the McCartney-Mills case would have had no such impact on his lifestyle.

I can't understand why commentators on the ruling appear to say that it does not have implication in terms of setting new preceident when it seems to overturn the one considered so important in my case.

Can anyone throw any light on this? Was I advised badly or is there something else I am missing?

  • Fiona
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20 Mar 08 #17304 by Fiona
Reply from Fiona
I will try. :)

First of all the McFarlane marriage was a long. The McFarlane and Miller judgments were handed down at the same time and there are several references to Miller in the McCartney/Mills case. The Millers had no children and it was said in many ways a short marriage is just as important as a longer one in relation to equality and matrimonial property. However, the judgment continued that departing from equality may be more appropriate the shorter the marriage and may depend on the nature of the property. Melissa Miller was awarded £5million out of the £17.5million fortune of her husband.

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