Wife WINS Legal Battle For Gold Bullions In Divorce Settlement

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Following the recent payout by EuroMillions lottery winner, Nigel Page, which saw ex-wife Wendy Page walk away with £2 million of her ex-husbands winnings, multi-millionaire and entrepreneur Peter Brandon has lost a similar suit after ex-wife Christina Brandon received £2.4 million.

Mr Justice Ryder, sitting in the High Court, heard how several gold bullion bars valued at £62, 000 had been smuggled out of Austria by Mr Brandon’s Grandfather during the 1930s and brought into the United Kingdom.

In response to his ex-wife’s claim for ancillary relief, Mr Brandon stated that the gold bars had gone missing following his departure from the matrimonial home. In failing to entertain Mrs Brandon’s claim for ancillary relief, it was Mr Brandon’s case that the gold bars had simply disappeared and could have been taken by anybody.

Mr Brandon, who has since re-married and emigrated to Florida, went so far as to say that he was in fact surviving on £2,000 each month and could not possibly afford a large settlement to his ex-wife, who continues to live in the former matrimonial home, worth an estimated £2 million.

During the proceedings which had followed the breakdown of the couple’s marriage, the gold bars had been ‘lying around’ the couple’s 11 bedroom mansion in Buckinghamshire.

In July 2010, Mr Justice Ryder, sitting in the High Court, commented on Mr Brandon’s dishonesty and failure to disclose significant assets throughout the course of the proceedings. The Court found that Mr Brandon had attempted to conceal significant wealth such as secret Swiss bank accounts, before ordering a settlement of £2.4 million in favour of Mrs Brandon.

Lord Justice Thorpe, dismissing Mr Brandon’s appeal, ruled that whilst there was a possibility the ruling was unfair, the decision was acceptable given Mr Brandon’s dishonest conduct throughout the proceedings.

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It may be that you have recently separated from your spouse and seek specialist advice on your finances. Alternatively, if you separated from your spouse some time ago, you should bear in mind that until your finances are concluded, one party to the marriage can still claim against the other. In the event that you are in the middle of ancillary relief proceedings, you may require specialist advice as to your obligations to disclose assets and income.

Ancillary relief is a complex area of law and it is essential that you obtain advice from an experienced solicitor. Our specialist Private Law team at Hanne & Co are here to help and advise you on any issues arising from the breakdown of your relationship. In the event that you were never married, we are able to advise on issues of cohabitation, trusts and property. Each of our experienced solicitors are able to offer fixed fee appointments at competitive prices.

Hanne & Co also have an experienced Private Law team with over a century of experience in family law proceedings and we are able to assist you every step of the way and at each stage of the legal process in family law disputes.

Please feel free to enquire with one of our team on +44 (020) 7228 0017, alternatively you can contact us through info@hanne.co.uk or via our website www.hanne.co.uk, and one of our experienced family lawyers will be in touch.

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