Complex Divorces to be Made Simpler?

All too often, the wrangling over the financial arrangements on divorce turns out to be lengthy, expensive and a cause of anxiety and anger.

In order to reduce these negative aspects, Mr Justice Mostyn has released a statement outlining procedures designed to enhance efficiency in the disposal of financial remedy cases to be heard by a High Court judge.

The changes include a requirement that a 'pre-trial review' be held before the allocated trial judge (unless this is completely impracticable) approximately four weeks before the final hearing.

Among a number of other requirements is one that stipulates that these reviews be tightly drawn and contain only evidence (not argument) relating to the parties' financial resources, living standards etc. There is also a requirement that the evidence bundle presented to the Court does not exceed 350 pages.

Since only higher value and more complex cases are allocated to the High Court in the first place, these requirements pose a tough test in some cases and make it important that information you wish to rely on is well organised and carefully considered for its evidential value.

The changes follow hard upon several 'high net worth' divorce cases in which the costs of litigation have spiralled.

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