England Granted Jurisdiction in Anglo-Scottish Maintenance Dispute

A High Court Judge has ruled that an English Court has jurisdiction over a maintenance dispute despite the couples being based in Scotland.

The wife filed maintenance proceedings in an English Court a few months after her husband had filed for Divorce in Scotland. Although the husband had filed for divorce he had not included a claim for maintenance in his petition. Scottish Courts cannot pronounce a divorce whilst financial issues are outstanding. The dispute was heard in the High Court where the two territories were treated as if they were separate states under the European Union Maintenance Regulations. The bottom line was that Mrs. Justice Parker ruled the English Court had jurisdiction over the maintenance dispute as proceedings for finances were first filed in England. This is believed to be the first reported intra-UK case under the EU Maintenance Regulation.

In England, wealthy spouses can be ordered to maintain their spouses for life, regularly at high levels, commensurate to the standard of living during the marriage. In Scotland, the law is very different, with maintenance limited to a 3 year adjustment period in most cases. This just shows you how vital proper advice can be when involved with cross jurisdictional disputes. Neighboring countries even within the UK can easily have hugely different interpretations of family law.

 Here at Ringrose Law our financial specialists at our offices in Boston, Spalding, Sleaford, Lincoln, Newark and Grantham are able to assist with all such queries.

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