Fairness in divorce settlements
Dave Harries: If somebody is going through a divorce, is it true that they are entitled to 50% of everything?
Tamara Glanvill: Sometimes that is the answer, but rarely. It is a starting point but we look at a number of factors to decide whether or not that represents a fair solution in each case.
Dave Harries: And Kate, what would some of those factors be, do you think?
Kate Butler: Well very common things are to do with need, so again with a young mother who may have worked part time or not worked at all, has less income, has less ability to generate a mortgage, but the husband perhaps has climbed the ladder, she supported him in doing that. That may justify the wife coming away with a larger proportion of the capital than the husband gets, that is a very common outcome.
Dave Harries: And Judith, there after often things in the media, in the news, about settlements, people being outraged by the size of settlements and things. Presumably the Courts do strive to be fair when they are deciding these things.
Judith Buckland: Yes, they do and I think you have hit the nail on the head in that press reports just don’t have all the facts, whereas the Judge does and has listened to everything that has got to be said. He has got to weigh up needs as Kate says, this is often one that is really important. He has to weigh up the needs and he doesn’t have a magic wand, there is often not enough money to go round to meet everybody's needs or indeed meet everybody’s wishes so it is a balancing exercise and if that means that one party is going to get somewhat more, then that is what the Judge will do.