Family Law Case Studies

  • International Relocation of a Child

    Sandeep acted for a mother who was seeking to permanently remove the parties’ only child (aged 11) from the jurisdiction and relocate to a non-Hague Convention country. She had been offered a job abroad and wanted to pursue it. The father, on the other hand, objected to the move.

    The parties were married; however, they were involved in an acrimonious divorce. Unfortunately, negotiations between the parties had broken down and therefore, lengthy negotiations through solicitors took place. The mother was clearly struggling with the stress of having to seek an Order from the Court as the father continued to refuse his consent and raised various concerns, all of which were addressed and worked through.

    Sandeep was able to put forward all the relevant case law to the father, who conceded, and eventually a Consent Order was obtained, enabling mother and child to commence their new life abroad without lengthy and expensive Court proceedings.

  • Pre-marital assets and divorce settlements

    Sandeep had acted on behalf of a concerned husband in regards to a divorce from his current wife. Sandeep had also previously assisted the husband in obtaining a Child Arrangements Order, confirming that the child from the marriage would live with him and the wife would be allowed contact.

    The husband, had, in his sole name, the former matrimonial home as well as a property bought prior to the relationship commencing with his current wife. This was a relatively short marriage and was followed by a very hostile divorce. The wife in this case, sought a share from the pre-marital assets as well as a share from the former matrimonial home. Even though the husband had put forward various offers to settle the matter at an early stage, the wife was adamant that she was entitled to a share to the pre-marital assets.  Valuations were obtained in respect of both properties.

    During the valuations, the wife had filed an application to Court, while unfortunately, the husband had been struggling with the continual fees and was finding himself more and more in debt as the matter progressed. Sandeep had worked closely with the husband’s Barrister and through prompt and effective negotiations; a fair settlement was obtained which kept the pre-marital assets intact.

  • Special Guardianship Order in Children Act Proceedings

    Sandeep was approached by the maternal grandparents in a case where they had been caring for their daughter’s daughter for a few years.  Initially, the mother of the child had flexible contact and would regularly visit with her daughter; however, she began demanding that the child be returned to her. The child objected, as did the grandparents and an Emergency Prohibited Steps Order was obtained to prevent the mother of the child from removing the child from the care of the grandparents.

    Unfortunately, despite a Child Arrangements Order confirming that the child would continue living with the grandparents, the child’s mother refused to accept the decision and a few months later, decided to pursue matters once again.  An application for a Special Guardianship Order was then lodged, that enabled the grandparents to have the ultimate decision in respect of the child, as the mother of the child was making it extremely difficult with regards to the child’s GP and school choices.

    Thanks to Sandeep’s in depth knowledge of the case and her ability to gather detailed evidence in support of the case, the SGO application was successful and the grandparents now enjoy their new-found security in the health and well-being of their grandchild.

  • Settlement of Jointly owned assets in a marriage

    Sandeep acted for the husband in a matter in which he and his wife jointly owned the former matrimonial home as well as three other rental properties. This matter was extremely acrimonious and the wife was adamant that she would be taking the matter through the Court forum to a final hearing. It was apparent during the exchange of financial disclosure, that it was likely to be a 60/40 percent split of assets between the parties, in favour of the husband.

    Although various proposals for settlement had been put forward, the wife refused to accept any. The wife was also extremely hesitant in making offers and the matter eventually went to a final hearing, which did indeed end with a 60/40 split.  The key issue in this case was agreeing the values of the parties’ assets.

    Sandeep’s client had been advised correctly as to the outcome of the case and his expectations managed in such a way that a realistic outcome had been outlined to him very early on in the case.

  • Divorce and Finance

    Gemma was instructed by the Wife in respect of her divorce on the basis of her husband’s unreasonable behaviour and the consequent Financial Remedy proceedings. The Wife worked part time and the Husband managed their property portfolio of twenty properties, which included one property abroad. These properties were all rented out to a mixture of private and social tenants. A significant amount of disclosure was undertaken and consequent negotiations regarding the valuation of each property were required.

    The Wife did not accept that the Husband was being open and honest in respect of his disclosure. The Husband was also the Respondent in other dispute in relation to his conduct of the property business. In negotiating a settlement for the client, consideration had to be given to tax implications arising from the business and in the event that any of the properties were transferred or sold.

    The matter was concluded by an agreement at Court whereby the Wife received slightly more than a 50% share of the Property portfolio, made up of well maintained, low risk properties within the UK and with additional indemnities from the Husband in relation to the tax implications of the business. In addition, the agreement included that in the event the Husband was found to have been untruthful in relation to his financial position the Wife would receive additional funds. This meant the Wife was able to rehouse herself and also secure an ongoing revenue stream from the properties she retained.

  • Pensions

    Gemma was instructed by the Wife in relation to matters arising following the breakdown of her marriage. The parties had a jointly owned property where they resided with their two children. The Wife believed the Husband may have assets abroad which were hidden. The Husband had significant debts in his sole name. The Wife worked in the NHS and had a sizeable pension which she wished to retain. The Husband had a very small pension.

    Due to the Husband’s refusal to respond to correspondence Court proceedings were commenced. The Husband’s financial disclosure remained incomplete. Gemma represented the Wife at Court where she secured an Order for the Wife to receive the majority of the net proceeds of sale, for the Husband to be responsible for his debts and for the Wife to retain her pension.

  • Property

    Gemma was instructed by the Wife in relation to the financial aspects of her divorce. The parties had three children, a jointly owned property and several investments. In addition the Wife had received an inheritance during the course of the marriage which she utilised in supporting the family.

    The Wife did not work and the Husband had a middle income job. Initially the parties reached an agreement at mediation; but had rescinded on this following legal advice. Throughout the matter, the Wife’s position was that she remain in the family home until the youngest child reached the age of 18. The Husband’s position was for the Property to be sold or transferred to him. This difference in position resulted in Court proceedings.

    The end result secured for the client was that she was able to remain in the home until the youngest child reached the age of 18, she remarried or cohabited. The Husband received the majority of the investments however by that stage he had spent such a significant amount on his legal fees he was forced to rent for a time. This could have been avoided if they had reached an agreement sooner.

  • Children
    Gemma assisted a Mother and Step Father where the Father was seeking to adopt his step daughter. The child’s natural Father had passed away sometime before. Gemma assisted the client’s in making the application to Court, which was duly granted.
  • Mediation

    The parties sought assistance in resolving the financial consequences of their separation. The Husband was self employed but the business had suffered as a result of the marriage ending. The Wife had not worked for some years. The Wife had never managed the domestic finances and needed help in understanding the disclosure being presented to her. There was a family home with a net equity of c£186,000, a small amount of savings and the Husband had a large pension.

    The Wife required ongoing spousal maintenance in order to meet her income needs. Through mediation Gemma discussed with the parties their various proposals and consequently reached an agreement where the Wife received capitalised maintenance, the house was sold and the proceeds divided to provide the Wife with a slightly higher amount of capital which was off-set against the Husband’s pension.

    The parties received legal and financial advice alongside the mediation process. Gemma recorded their agreement in a Memorandum of Understanding for them to present to their lawyers to prepare an Order.  By reaching agreement through mediation they saved significant costs and were both able to stay on the housing ladder.

  • Favourable divorce settlement of £7m assets

    Patrick acted for an independent financial advisor going through a divorce to robustly negotiate the division of marital assets worth in the region of £7million.

    Acting against an international law firm of significant legal standing, Patrick was able to ensure his client remained in the former matrimonial home, a property inherited by him and of some local significance and standing. The negotiations also included the creation of an education fund for the parties’ children along with the implementation of a pension share.

    Patrick was able to successfully meet his client’s objectives of ensuring he maintained a positive relationship with his wife going forward and to reach a fair and lasting agreement by which he retained his family’s home.

  • Negotiating an acrimonious divorce

    Patrick worked on behalf of a client going through divorce proceedings, who had been recommended the firm’s services by another client of the Family Law department.

    Following a separation some years previously, the client’s wife had left the country in under acrimonious circumstances, which subsequently led to difficulties while negotiating the divorce and resultant financial agreement.

    Mediation, as suggested by Patrick, helped initially, but with a negotiated Consent Order placed before the Court, the client’s former partner then sought to abandon the agreement following enquiries from a Deputy District Judge.

    This led to a further round of protracted negotiations, with Patrick’s client’s assets needing to be protected and preserved by Dispute Resolution through correspondence.

    Still advocating a mediation-led approach, Patrick robustly supported its outcome, enabling the client to maintain the mediated agreement, achieving a result that was considered fair and reasonable under all circumstances, while keeping costs to a minimum thanks to the avoidance of protracted and costly legal proceedings.

  • Facilitating a high net worth individual’s divorce

    A director and part owner of a company worth in the region of £19m was in the process of a divorce, and requires legal support around the attendant financial matters.

    With family involvement in the firm, the central desire was to avoid eroding any goodwill that could disrupt business, while at the same time putting enough pressure on the solicitors acting for the opposing party to obtain a fair and balanced settlement.

    In order to facilitate deft handling of the case, a direct channel of communication with the partner’s instructed solicitors was established, which served to keep any dispute or misunderstanding between the parties to a minimum.

  • Managing divorce proceedings involving international property

    The client in this case was in receipt of a Lloyds pension, while also jointly owning property in both England and abroad with his wife.

    With tax issues a central part of the case, financial advice was sought from a multinational accounting firm in order to protect both the client’s pension and their international property.

    The process has seen the client liaising directly with his wife, using the advice given by both legal and tax advisors to their advantage to come to an equitable agreement that benefits them both. This has served to avoid potentially costly court proceedings, while also maintaining a positive relationship between the pair going forward.