In a case dubbed the ‘meal ticket for life’, the Court of Appeal this week ruled that maintenance payments for Kim Waggott from her ex-husband should end after three years.
Mrs Waggott had been awarded a settlement of £9.76m and £175,000 in annual maintenance payments for life, after she was divorced from her multi-millionaire husband William in 2012.
She had asked the court to approve an increase in annual payments, but he challenged the original award.
Sitting in the appeal court, Lord Justice Moylan said Mrs Waggott could make up the shortfall from losing her annual payments by investing around 10% of her initial payment and using the interest. Moylan LJ ruled that payments should stop from March 2021.
Henry Hood, head of the family department and partner at Hunters Solicitors, commented:
“Lord Justice Moylan’s judgment in Waggott v Waggott is likely to be seen as the most significant indication, yet that the law relating to spousal maintenance is much less generous than it used to be. There had been a distinct division amongst the judges dealing with these matters, and Moylan LJ was seen as the standard bearer for the more generous approach.
“His judgment may therefore have confirmed a more limited approach to maintenance, both as to amount and duration, than was the case a few years ago. In doing so, he may also have contributed to a more consistent approach across the country; it has long been the case that a maintenance order standard in some parts of the country would be unobtainable in others, and that may be less the case now.”
Read the full article in The Law Society Gazette here.