Family Law Hub

Des Pallieres v Des Pallieres [2021] EWCA Civ 955

The wife had previously sought to register and enforce the financial provisions of a 2010 French order through the English courts, but rather than applying under the Maintenance Regulation in the Family Court had made the application in the High Court. The mistake came to light in March 2020. An application for rectification had failed since there was insufficient evidence for the court to be satisfied that the husband was habitually resident or had assets in England, and previous orders for enforcement were declared null and void. The wife now appealed against this decision on the ground that the judge had erred in failing to find the conditions in FPR PD 34E para 4 to have been satisfied, but her appeal was dismissed by the Court of Appeal on the basis of the respondent's notice, which argued that the court had made an error of law in finding that FPR 4.1(6) was sufficiently wide to allow the relief sought by the wife. The wording of FPR 4.1(6) did not provide for rectification, only for variation or revocation. In King LJ's judgment, even if FPR 4.1(6) had been engaged and an order of variation made, the court could not possibly justify backdating the order to September 2017 when the evidence necessary for the making of the order had not been before the court at the time the original order was made. It was therefore unnecessary for the Court of Appeal to hear argument in relation to FPR PD 34E. Lewison LJ and Sir Nicholas Patten agreed. The appeal was dismissed.

Judgment, published: 31/07/2021

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Published: 31/07/2021

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