19 July 2018

Jo Edwards quoted in The Times on latest spousal maintenance ruling

On 18 July, the Supreme Court handed down its decision in Mills v Mills, dealing with spousal maintenance and the circumstances in which a recipient can come back many years after divorce to ask for an increase.  The Supreme Court found that it wouldn’t ordinarily be right to order increased spousal maintenance to cover a need already covered by the original order, e.g. housing costs.

The Times quoted Jo Edwards, Head of Family, who said that this may be considered to be a “pyrrhic victory” for Mr Mills, who started this process wanting a reduction in or termination of his obligations.  In recent years, there has been a significant shift towards spousal maintenance being ordered for a fixed term, rather than for life.  The Family Justice Council, Law Commission and House of Lords have all endorsed an approach that ‘allows a transition to independence’. However, it is important to note that this will not be right in every case.

A link to The Times article can be found here (subscription required).

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