Divorce settlement unchanged after ruling

A legal ruling has said that a divorce settlement cannot be increased after it has been made, despite a change in circumstances.

The ex-wife of businessman Martin Walker had been given leave to appeal to the high court after his wealth rose following the settlement between the two in 2006.

Mr Walkden had provided nearly £500,000 in that instance but Ms Walker sought an increase as he gained £1.8 million from the sale of his firm the following year.

However, judge Lord Justice Thorpe ruled that no alteration could be made, agreeing with Mr Walkden's lawyer that he was "entitled to describe this case as the flipside of the decision of this court in Myerson v Myerson".

That case had seen a businessman attempt to cut a settlement after the credit crunch slashed the value of his wealth in stocks and shares.

Those keen to avoid such wrangles may wish to settle amicably doing a DIY divorce.

While attempts to retrospectively alter divorce terms in Britain have failed, they have succeeded elsewhere, with John Cleese managing to trim his pay out to his former wife in the US earlier this year.

Written by Christopher Evans

Published on: June 26, 2009

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