Equality

A Russian billionaire has taken steps to appeal a judgment that his wife is awarded 41% of the matrimonial assets worth £1bn. This was a long marriage of 20 years, meaning the starting point for a settlement is the equal sharing of assets.

Despite the husband being the breadwinner, the Judge at first instance felt that the wealth of the parties had been built up over the course of the marriage through “equal contributions to the welfare of the family, and should be subject to the sharing principle”. A split approaching 50:50 was therefore appropriate.

This settlement provides an example of the Courts in England and Wales not discriminating against the financially weaker spouse where they have been the homemaker. This generosity is rooted in and upholds the principle that breadwinners’ and homemakers’ respective contributions to a marriage are of equal importance. With this in mind, London remains seen as the divorce capital of the world.

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