The courts, however, are prepared to set aside dubious transfers if it’s shown that they are simply an attempt to prevent a fair divorce settlement being reached.

Such a case arose recently in which a husband used a company he owned to buy one of his properties worth up to £800,000. He then transferred the company to a third party so it appeared he had no further interest in it.

The wife took the matter to court, alleging that the transfer of the company was a sham because the husband retained the beneficial ownership.

The judge held that the property would make a significant difference to the wife’s financial claims and should be added to the matrimonial pot when considering how much support she should receive for herself and her children.

That decision has now been upheld by the Court of Appeal, which said the transfer was manifestly an attempt by the husband to prevent the wife from getting her fair share of a valuable asset.

Please contact us if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of matrimonial law.

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