When Financial Orders are based on Future Income – CR v SR [2013] EWHC 1155 (Fam)

Written by admin

June 12, 2013

The Husband (age 45) in this case has been granted leave to appeal against an order which transferred the main capital asset to the Wife (the former matrimonial home valued at £975,000 in which there is estimated equity of £375,000) and also ordered an ongoing maintenance order for the Wife (age 46), for joint lives.

The Husband has appealed on the grounds that the order creates capital inequality.  He also argued that the maintenance claim should be dismissed or reduced to a term order; whilst arguing that at the same time, the order for child maintenance should be increased.

In this case, the Husband argued that a Mesher order or a sale of the property, would be more appropriate options.  The Wife had sought maintenance orders of £2000 pcm for herself, and £1000 pcm for the children (who were aged 14, 12 and 6 years).

Moylan J indicated that he thought that the Husband had real prospects for success on the basis that the current orders fell beyond what could be called reasonable, and that the result was imbalanced.

Crucially, the court had relied heavily on the Husband’s anticipated future income.  Moylan J indicated that caution needs to be applied when basing a settlement on the future income of one party.  The court needs to ensure that an order is both affordable, and that it does not result in (undue) imbalance, based on income which may not be realised.

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