Family Solicitors Ipswich – High Court gives prison sentence for failing to provide full financial disclosure in divorce case

Nicola Furmston Cropped

‘The case of Mr and Mrs Scot Young which came before the High Court recently, serves as a reminder to us of the powers of the court when it comes to ensuring that both parties to a divorce provide full financial disclosure, enabling the court to make a true assessment of the pot of assets available for distribution between the parties. On the one hand the court’s powers to punish those who refuse to give financial disclosure are considerable – in Mr Young’s case a spell of imprisonment was ordered, but on the other hand the court found itself impotent when this still did not entice Mr Young to tell the whole truth and the court was inevitably unable to find that the pot of available assets was anywhere near as large as Mrs Young wished. The judge hoped that by making a more modest order (although still large by any measure) Mr Young may be persuaded to pay without further ado, although Mrs Young remains unconvinced.

Many people will be unaware that solicitors are officers of the court and owe a duty not only to their clients but also to the court. They are subject to the highest standards of honesty where the provision of information to the court is concerned. This may be why, when Mr and Mrs Scot Young’s case came before the court, Mr Young represented himself.’

Nicola Furmston is a family law solicitor at , Solicitors in Ipswich

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