In a case that could set an important family law precedent, a woman has won the right to make a claim for divorce financial settlement from her ex-husband a full twenty years following the dissolution of their marriage.
The financial claim was heard at the Supreme Court, with all five judges ruling in favour of the claimant, thus clearing the way for the case to be heard at the Family Division of the High Court.
Despite admitting that the woman’s hope for a £1.9 million divorce settlement was “out of the question” one judge did say that the claim was “legally recognisable” and as such had a “real prospect” of receiving some form of award.
It is an unusual case, not least in the fact that the separated couple are unconventional – with the former husband having enjoyed a remarkable turnaround in his life since leaving behind the new age traveller existence he enjoyed with his ex wife, whom he married in 1981.
In 1995, reportedly while still living in an old ambulance, he founded Britain’s first green energy firm, Ecotricity, which was voted the UK’s Best Energy Company 2015.
The former husband has expressed his dissatisfaction with the ruling commenting that people “all have a right to move on, and not be looking over our shoulders. This could signal open season for people who had brief relationships a quarter of a century ago”.
To find out more about your legal rights in relation to divorce and financial settlement after a short term marriage click here.