Family law and divorce solicitors have succeeded in securing a £14.5 million luxury London property for a 63-year-old former air hostess as part of her divorce financial settlement following her separation from her 90-year-old Saudi Arabian ex-husband.
However, the award of the exclusive Northwest London property came via some interesting legal argument, with the woman’s family law and divorce solicitors making use of an arcane piece of Victorian law, the 1882 Married Women’s Property Act.
Despite this, the judge’s comments on the division of property would not sound out of place in a more routine case.
“The authorities make it clear that she is not to be discriminated against for the way in which the parties organised their respective roles,” he said while giving his ruling at the High Court in London.
“It is clear that she is not a lady of business. I am quite clear that she was primarily a homemaker and mother. This does not make her contribution to this marriage any the less.”
Her husband had made numerous attempts to evict her from the property, as well as to force its sale, but, given the judge’s ruling, he must now hand it over, together with a £10 million holiday property in Cannes, as part of the divorce financial settlement.
However, the judge did not grant the woman the £205,014 she was hoping to secure to spend on luxury items such as jewellery, clothing, shoes and handbags.
The Married Women’s Property Act 1882 was a landmark piece of English legislation as it was an important early step in securing the property rights of married women. It was brought about by the famous 1836 case of Caroline Norton, which served to highlight the unfair and limited property rights of married women.
If you would like advice and information regarding your entitlement to property and other assets on separation or divorce click here for more from Brighton and London family and law and divorce solicitors Healys LLP.