CourtRoyal Court
Judge(Crill, Deputy Bailiff and Jurats Picot and Le Boutillier):
Judgment Date07 February 1984
Date07 February 1984
(Crill, Deputy Bailiff and Jurats Picot and Le Boutillier):

A.J. Olsen for the petitioner;

J.C.K.H. Valpy for the respondent.

Family Law—financial provision—factors to be considered—legitimate to have regard to factors listed in English Matrimonial Causes Act 1973, s.25 as guide to decision on financial provision in Jersey

Family Law—financial provision—lump sum—size of lump sum required to purchase accommodation must take into account probable response of Housing Committee to application for consent to purchase—if assets available, unjustifiable to make lump sum so low that spouse unlikely to obtain consent and so required to leave Island

Family Law—financial provision—lump sum—when lump sum to be paid by wife, not appropriate to have regard to one-third rule as starting point or to base calculation on proportion of combined assets—court to consider all factors especially husband's reasonable needs

Family Law—financial provision—valuation of assets—if conflict in valuation, court wiser to take lower figure—should consider especially whether assets realizable in foreseeable future

CRILL, DEPUTY BAILIFF: Mr. and Mrs. E. Howarth, the Petitioner and Respondent in this case ("the husband" and "the wife") were married in 1962. For the first fifteen years of their marrige they lived in England. During this time the husband worked and provided a borne for his wife and daughter. Neither party gave evidence before us but the house they lived in appeared to have been a reasonably comfortable one judging from an agreed photograph. The couple's income was supplemented by gifts of money from the wife's father which were used mainly to buy clothes for the wife and daughter.

In 1968 two family trusts were set up by the wife's father. They were the R. McBride and the T.R. McBride settlements respectively. The income from the settlements was channelled into one or more Jersey holding companies, whose auditors were Coopers & Lybrand. Later the proper law of the settlements was transferred from Jersey to the Cayman Islands. The wife was a substantial beneficiary under both trusts and following the advice of their financial advisers, she and the husband came to Jersey in 1977 and bought the matrimonial home, the property La Valette in Trinity, under Regulation 1 (1) (k) of the Housing (General Provisions) (Jersey) Regulations, 1970, that is to say, the Housing Committee were satisfied that consent to the purchase was justified on economic grounds. Further land adjacent to the property was added to it some time later.

After coming to Jersey the husband and wife enjoyed a substantially increased standard of living, supported mainly by the wife's money. It may be said, therefore, that her financial contribution to the household from at least that time was very substantial. In May, 1982, the wife confessed to the husband that she was having an adulterous affair with Mr. D.A.W. Leonard, the Co-Respondent in this case, and a close friend of both parties, as well as being the vendor of the house. Quite understandably the husband was very upset and for about a year needed psychiatric help. On the 27th April, 1983, the husband obtained a decree of Judicial Separation from this Court but the ancillary matters were left over. He now seeks a lump sum from the wife to effect what both parties agreed would be a clean break. No provision is required for the daughter, who is well provided for under the settlements. She is now eighteen and at a Finishing School abroad.

It is common ground that the wife concedes that the husband should have a house in which he can live. She does not agree, however, that that house must necessarily be in Jersey. The husband has some capital which at a conservative figure, for reasons given to us by Mr. L. Crapp, the senior partner in Jersey of Coopers and Lybrand, may be put at about £80,000. He has an income of about £9,000 per annum. There are, however, a number of matters which the Court has to decide before attempting to assess the proper sum to allot to the husband for the purpose of his acquiring a house. These matters may he stated as follows: 1. Is the adulterous behaviour of the wife a matter to take into account, so as...

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7 cases
  • H (the Mother) v J (the Father)
    • Jersey
    • Royal Court
    • 3 October 2013
    ...matter of S [2011] JRC 119 . F -v- M [2007] JLR Note 21 . S -v- G [2003] JLR Note 29 . Croft -v- Moy (1971) JJ 1793 . Howarth -v- McBride (1984) JJ 1 . Stanaway-Ivey -v- Overland (1980) JJ 233 . Southern (nee Brownbill) -v- Southern and Kingswell [1999] JLR 94 . S -v- W [1999] JLR Notes 9a ......
  • J v M
    • Jersey
    • Royal Court
    • 22 May 2002
    ...HJ v. HJ, English High Court, October 17th, 2001, unreported. Howard v. Howard, [1945] P. 1; [1945] 1 All E.R. 91. Howarth v. McBride, 1984 J.J. 1. Joss v. Joss, [1943] P. 18; [1943] 1 All E.R. 102. Lambert v. Lambert, English High Court, October 22nd, 2001, unreported. Lidster v. Lidster (......
  • H v J
    • Jersey
    • Royal Court
    • 31 March 2021 a lacuna in the Law, the Family Division does invariably take account of the considerations in section 25 MCA 1973 ( Howarth v McBride 1984 J.J. 1) ii It has long been a principle of family practice that the needs of a second family should not be relied upon to excuse inadequate provisio......
  • L v M
    • Jersey
    • Royal Court
    • 11 October 2016
    ...Binet for the Petitioner. Advocate B. J. Corbett for the Respondent. Authorities Matrimonial Causes (Jersey) Law 1949. Howarth v McBride [1984] JJ 1 (JLR 1) . Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. Le Geyt v Mallett and Rodrigues [1993] JLR 103 . Sharland v Sharland [2015] 2 FLR 1367 . Radmacher (for......
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