Randy Work, former Lone Star Funds executive, lost his divorce appeal today after failing to convince judges that his “special contribution” during their marriage meant he was entitled to a bigger share of a $225m fortune, because of his “genius”.
Jo Carr-West, Partner in the Family Department, commented:
“Today’s decision in the case of Work v Gray comes at a time when family lawyers are following the development of the ‘special contribution’ argument with interest, particularly in light of reports that Ryan Giggs is set to argue – in divorce proceedings currently before the High Court – that his footballing success led to a contribution unmatched by his wife’s that should be recognised in the divorce settlement.
In Mr Work’s case, the Appeal Judges agreed that the word “genius” is over used. The trial judge had said that the term should be reserved for only the truly exceptional such as Mozart or Einstein, and this was approved by the appeal judges who upheld the decision that Mr Work’s success was a result of him being in the right place at the right time. This did not mean that it was a ‘special contribution’ sufficient to skew the balance of the divorce settlement in his favour.
It remains to be seen whether the Courts think that the skill of Mr Giggs’ left foot equates to the compositional genius of Mozart.”