End of “Meal Tickets for Life” in Divorce

The press are very much focusing upon the “meal ticket” headline but the case of Mills -v- Mills does show that a party paying maintenance (often the husband) is not expected to compensate for poor financial decisions by the recipient.

In this case the ex-wife got herself into significant financial difficulty, and 13 years after the original Order, applied to increase the maintenance to pay her rent, having lost the £230,000 she was awarded to buy a house.

The case very much turns on its own facts – as does every Divorce case – but it is consistent with the increasing tendency of the Courts to limit maintenance; previously a lifetime Order was quite common, whereas now they are much more commonly limited to a certain fixed period.

If you have any questions on this or any other family law matter, please contact Tim Melville-Walker on 01730816711.