News

Henry Hood comments on latest Versteegh ruling for Family Law Week

  • May 13, 2018
  • By Henry Hood, Partner

Wife fails in attempt to increase award of £51.4 million plus share of business assets

Camilla Versteegh has failed in her attempt to increase the High Court’s award in financial remedy proceedings against her husband, Gerard Versteegh.

The order by Sir Peter Singer gave Mrs Versteegh approximately half the non-business assets (£51.4m) together with a 23.41% interest in a business called H Holdings, which business had been created by and was run by Mr Versteegh under a trust structure.

Lady Justice King, giving the lead judgment in Versteegh v Versteegh [2018] EWCA Civ 1050, noted that the costs to date (excluding the costs of the appeal) were in excess of £4m.

The court had to address extensive arguments about, inter alia, the impact of a pre-marital agreement, non-matrimonial assets and the sharing principle. However, the main focus of the hearing was upon (i) the judge’s finding that he was unable to determine the value or future liquidity of H Holdings, the major business asset and (ii) his decision to make a so called Wells order whereby, rather than receiving a lump sum representing her interest in H Holdings, the wife received her interest in specie in the form of ordinary shares.

Henry Hood, Head of the Family Department at Hunters Solicitors, commented on the judgment:

“The Court of Appeal has found comprehensively against Camilla Versteegh in her attempt to improve on the High Court’s award to her of £90m. It rejected her arguments to give no weight to the pre-nuptial agreement signed the day before the wedding, as to the extent of the inherited and premarital assets that he brought to the marriage, and the fact that the award was made up of a minority holding in the husband’s company because they were so difficult to value. It was a bad day in court for her. The judgment is also interesting in that it sided with Moylan LJ (against Mostyn J) in the in the ongoing debate between the “arithmetical” and “impressionistic” approach to identifying marital assets to be divided.”

This article first appeared in Family Law Week and can be read here.


Related News

Feb 26, 2021
Richard Kershaw considers the implications of Mr Justice Cohen’s judgment in FRB v DRC (No 3) in Family Law Week
Feb 25, 2021
Richard Kershaw examines the impact of market volatility on divorce settlements in Finance Monthly
Feb 24, 2021
Polly Atkins examines whether one can charge an ex-spouse rent whilst waiting for their home to sell
Feb 19, 2021
Richard Kershaw examines whether you can re-open a divorce settlement due to Covid-19 in Edward Fennell’s Legal Diary
Feb 02, 2021
Amy Scollan discusses divorce and luxury assets
Feb 01, 2021
Richard Kershaw discusses recent case where an unmarried couple have been ordered to share investment assets
Jan 18, 2021
Family Mediation Week 2021
Nov 19, 2020
Jay Patel and Polly Atkins examine family law in the lead up to Brexit in Family Law Week
Nov 09, 2020
Richard Kershaw discusses trusts on divorce and their role in financial planning strategies
Nov 05, 2020
Hunters recognised in The Times Best Law Firms 2021

© Hunters Law LLP 2021 | Privacy NoticeLegal & Regulatory | Cookies Policy | Complaints Procedure.

Hunters Law LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (number 657218)