Mr Justice Jordan orders that wife must provide €1.6 million settlement to husband as part of a divorce.
A couple was granted a decree of divorce by the High Court in a case where their mutual assets were worth between €6.5 and €7 million. Usually, divorces are heard in the Circuit Court, except in cases where there are significant resources between the parties and where property is valued at more than €3 million. In this case, both parties had very successful careers and were highly paid. The wife was significantly more highly paid throughout her career.
Claims of abuse rejected
The wife claimed that the husband had been abusive to her during the relationship. She asked that the court take account of this in deciding how to divide the assets. The husband accepted that he did lose his temper sometimes but that it never escalated into abusive behaviour. The Judge declined to accept the evidence of abuse, stating that there was no credible evidence to support the claims.
The wife claimed that it had been a happy relationship until she suffered with an illness. The husband was not supportive through her illness and on her road to recovery. At this point, the relationship had broken down. She had wished for him to leave the family home. However, the husband was not willing to leave the children. The husband gave evidence that he was very involved in the upbringing of the children and did not wish to only see them occasionally.
Ruling on assets
In delivering the judgment, the Judge stated that he must have regard to the contributions made by each of the spouses, which did not mandate an equal division of the assets. It was determined that the wife should retain the family home and buy out the husband’s share. The wife would continue then to pay the mortgage. The wife’s pension, worth €1.6 million, and the husband’s pension, worth just under €700,000, would be equalised, to give the husband a 30% share (or €470,000) of her total pension funds. Both parties were to pay their own legal costs.
*In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.*