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Trusts

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  • The issue was whether or not Cohen J should determine, almost certainly by its dismissal, the wife's application for capital orders against the husband or whether he should further adjourn her capital claims. The husband had settled a trust with a very large sum of money, from which he had been irrevocably excluded after the marriage had broken down, and was in arrears with his periodical payments, but was living comfortably. Cohen J found that dismissing the wife's capital claims would be a matter of last resort, and adjourned them, with the proviso that they would be dismissed unless an application to restore them was made by 31 July 2022. Judgment, 07/08/2019, free
  • The couple married in 2016 after a long relationship, and the husband died later that year. The appeal was concerned with whether an application under s 2 of the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 could be made out of time, whether a beneficial interest under a discretionary trust instead of outright provision amounted to reasonable financial provision, and the relevance of a "stand-still agreement" in place while an out of court settlement was pursued. Asplin LJ found that the explanation for the lapse of time in this case was clear, and it had been wrong of the judge to find that the wife had received sufficient advice about the time limit and the 1975 Act. King LJ and Baker LJ agreed. The court exercised the power in s 4 of the 1975 Act to allow the wife to bring a claim out of time. Judgment, 31/07/2019, free
  • The wife applied for financial remedies, having had a freezing order granted on some of the husband's funds. The husband had instructed solicitors but failed to engage in proceedings, and after he was found to lack capacity to litigate the Official Solicitor was appointed. Moor J rejected the wife's case for a second home in London, but came to the conclusion that an appropriate budget was £175,000 per year for the rest of her life, making for an overall award of over £7 million. She was also awarded five additional maintenance payments to reflect that she would be kept out of her money for five years. Judgment, 20/05/2019, free
  • A financial remedy application made by a husband against his wife, the great-granddaughter of the founder of Avon Products, Inc. The Judge, Mr Justice Mostyn, had to determine if the capital from the family trust was available to the wife and was the pre-nuptial agreement void? He found that the money was available to the wife and that the agreement was invalid. He awarded the husband £1,333,500 to meet his needs. Judgment, 11/04/2019, free
  • In financial remedy proceedings, the husband was trying to thwart the wife's claim by asserting that the business and the properties were owned by his mother, in a situation where the true owners had been camouflaged. In virtually every case the actual facts would determine the real ownership of a piece of property, and an enquiry into real ownership would consider the intentions of the relevant actors. Conveyancers were urged to record how the beneficial interest is to be held. Mostyn J found that the business and properties were owned 50:50 by the husband and wife. Judgment, 27/03/2019, free

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