Marriage and divorce – career choice or pension plan by Shakeel Mir - The Law House Family Law Solicitors, London & Peterborough


Marriage and divorce – career choice or pension plan by Shakeel Mir

By in All Blogs, Family Law Category on May 7th, 2013

Who wants to be a millionaire? You could be lucky enough to win the lottery, or become an oil tycoon, but why not marry a rich man and then divorce him? Cynical as this may seem, many women have become rich in their own right as a result of divorcing a wealthy husband. Some of these women have made it into the 2013 Sunday Times Rich List. The cynic would say that a woman only needs to marry a rich man and have his child in order to secure their future!

Slavica Ecclestone made her £740m fortune by divorcing Bernie Ecclestone, CEO and President of Formula 1.

Irina Malandina received a settlement of £155 million after divorcing Roman Abramovich in 2007.

Diane Jenkins, ex-wife of financier Roger Jenkins, received a settlement of £150m after divorcing him in 2011. Apparently they have claimed to have had “the happiest divorce ever” after agreeing a settlement, and they remain good friends.

How long do you need to be married?

Beverley Charman received £48 million after divorcing the insurance magnate, John Charman. They were married for 27 years, having met at school. She gave up her job to look after their two children. On the other hand, Sally Croker-Poole reportedly received £40m after divorcing the Aga Khan (spiritual leader to nearly 12million Ismaili Muslims) in 1994 after being married for just six years. Every case really does turn on its facts.

How much do you get?

In deciding how the capital should be divided between the parties, the starting point is that assets should be shared equally unless there are good reasons not to.

Mr and Mrs Lambert had been married 32 years, and had two adult children. The husband was wealthy and successful. Mrs Lambert stayed and home to bring up the children. They had £27m in the matrimonial pot. In 2003, the judge, commenting on the wife’s contribution to the family unit, said that “if all that is regarded is the scale of the breadwinner’s success, then discrimination is bound to follow, since there is no equal opportunity for the home maker to demonstrate the scale of their comparable success.”

Marrying for money is not a new thing. In English history, marriages amongst the aristocracy were contractual in nature, love, if it came into the equation, was a bonus and this was particularly true of royal marriages. Arranged marriages are not uncommon in some cultures and the concept of dowry in marriages still exists. However, when marriages break down good advice is priceless and getting the right solicitor is crucial to obtaining a fair and reasonable settlement.

If you would like to speak to one of our expert solicitors about how we can help you about getting divorced and how to keep costs down, please contact a member of our team on 020 8956 2655 or email us at sbedford@thelawhouse.com.