Wife in divorce dispute ordered to leave ‘future’ marital home
July 1, 2013 2 comments
In M v S, the couple lived with the husband’s parents after their marriage, but several months later the wife left, relocating to another property owned by her father-in-law. She claimed that they had always planned to move in there together but he said she had moved into the property without permission while his parents were out of the country.
The wife filed for divorce and also applied for financial relief (maintenance). On their return, the man’s parents asked her to leave the building and a hearing took place to determine ownership of the property the wife was now living in.
The man presented documents showing that he did not in fact own the property and that it had instead been bought by his father before the couple even met. The wife insisted, meanwhile, that the man had told her the property was his and that they would live together there after the marriage. The hearing also heard that the husband had Asperger’s Syndrome and also suffered from depression.
Sitting in the Family Division, Mr Justice Coleridge said the man’s mental conditions may have led her to give the false impression that he owned the property and the wife could not be faulted for believing him. But the documents clearly showed that the husband’s father was the owner of the property and so the wife had no prospect of success.
Photo by Pat Scullion via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence