fbpx

Judge Overturns Divorce Decree Based on Wife's Forged Signature

6th April 2022 By

Court orders are sometimes obtained by improper means, but when the truth emerges – as it almost always does – those responsible are bound to pay a crushing price. That was certainly so in the case of a businessman who obtained a divorce on the strength of his wife’s forged signature.

The former couple built up considerable wealth during a marriage that lasted more than 30 years and yielded four children. Following their separation, the husband obtained a final decree of divorce on grounds that the marriage had irretrievably broken down due to the wife’s unreasonable behaviour.

The order was granted on the basis of a form which stated that the wife had received notice of the husband’s divorce petition and did not wish to resist it. The form bore the wife’s purported signature. In the years since the divorce, the husband had remarried and had a child with his new wife.

In setting aside the divorce decree at the wife’s behest, a judge noted that a forensic document examiner had testified that there was very strong evidence that the signature on the form was not that of the wife and that it had been simulated by someone else. In the examiner’s opinion, the question of whether the husband had forged the signature could not be conclusively answered.

In the light of that expert testimony and other evidence concerning the background of the marriage, the judge found that the wife had received no notice of the divorce proceedings. It was clear that the husband had a vested interest in the divorce going through and the judge was satisfied that what appeared to be the wife’s signature on the form had been forged by him or by someone else acting on his behalf.

Source: Concious

Latest News

Challenge to Will's Validity Rejected by High Court

12th April, 2024 By

The best way to ensure your assets will be distributed as you wish is to have your will professionally drafted by a qualified solicitor. In a recent case, a challenge to the validity of an elderly man's will was dismissed by the High Court. The man had previously made a will in 2011, leaving most of his estate equally to his three children. In 2018, by which time one of his sons had predeceased him, he made a further will, leaving the residue of his estate to his other son...

Defiance of Family Court Orders Will Always End Badly

10th April, 2024 By

Custodial sentences very rarely come into play in the family courts. Where there have been repeated breaches of court orders, however, judges may have little choice but to clamp down. This was illustrated in the High Court during committal proceedings that stemmed from a child custody dispute. The background to the case involved contested proceedings between the father and mother of a young child. These concluded with a court order establishing that the child – a daughter – would live with the mother. Three months later the daughter travelled with...

Claim for SDLT Relief on Annex Unsuccessful

8th April, 2024 By

When buying a property consisting of more than one residence, it may be possible to claim multiple dwellings relief (MDR) against Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT). However, there are certain conditions that must be met for an MDR claim to succeed, as a recent case illustrates. A property was purchased for £1.8 million. Prior to the purchase, the buyer had agreed with the seller that he would be allowed to carry out works to construct a self-contained annex at the property. The buyer's SDLT return included a claim for MDR...

Divorce – Alleged Bigamy Raised in Financial Remedies Dispute

5th April, 2024 By

The issue of bigamy and its potential impact on a person's ability to seek financial remedies in a divorce came under the legal spotlight recently. A husband made an application to strike out his wife's financial remedies claim on the basis that she had committed bigamy and deceived him into a marriage when she knew she was not free to marry. This deceit, he claimed, was so egregious that, as a matter of public policy, she should be debarred from pursuing any claim for financial remedies against him. The husband based...