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Husband ordered to pay £456,000 costs following non disclosure

In general, the rule in such cases is that each party pays their own costs. Additionally, the case should have been straightforward, since the couple entered into a pre-nuptial agreement before their marriage, and agreed which assets would belong to each of them in the event of a divorce. Moreover, the couple both ratified the pre-nup in the divorce proceedings themselves.The catch was that Mr Thirty had entered into some extremely complex financial arrangements with his wife during the marriage, which he failed to disclose in court. The effect of this was to increase the time and effort involved in settling the case, leading to far higher bills for his wife than would otherwise have been necessary. Full financial disclosure is required during divorce cases, and the courts have the power to order one party to pay the other’s legal costs, or to impose a less favourable settlement, if they attempt to conceal assets. This was the case with Mr Thiry, who was described by the judge as “an unprincipled rogue who has acted in a financially predatory fashion to prey on his wife for his own profit and to her substantial detriment”. The money awarded to his ex-wife reflected “the self-inflicted extent that the husband’s conduct of the litigation has inflated the wife’s costs bill and thus my costs award against him.”Due to his repeated failure to comply with court notices, Mr Thiry was committed to prison for four months. However, this has not been enforced since he left the UK and he has not returned since the order was made.Whilst the vast majority of divorces do not involve such high settlement values, this case does highlight the action the court will take on non-disclosure and litigation misconduct matters.”Are you going through a divorce or need advice on a pre-nuptial agreement? Talk to us. We are experienced family law specialists and can give you the expert guidance you need. Call 01302 320621 or email info@athertongodfrey.co.uk
 

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