So the Supreme Court has delivered its judgements in the cases of Sharland and Gohil to a resounding cheer from those on the side of justice and with a sense of what’s right for people undergoing divorce proceedings.
The judgement should send a clear message to all the people who are or have been involved in matrimonial proceedings that they must make full, frank and honest disclosure of their financial position. If they fail to do so, then they risk their former spouse returning the matter to court to be decided on the true basis of their finances.
What Happened in the Sharland and Gohil Cases?
Both Mr Sharland and Mr Gohil failed to make a full, frank and honest disclosure of their respective financial positions.
Mr Sharland’s non-disclosure that his company was about to be floated on the stock market was held as being “deliberate and dishonest”. The true extent of Mr Gohil’s wealth only came to light after criminal proceedings against him, which took place after the matrimonial proceedings had concluded.
The ex-wives of both men will now be able to have their cases reheard and a decision on the division of the assets will be made based on the true wealth of the parties. To read more on the Sharland/Gohil case see our earlier blog: Divorce Settlements Can be Renegotiated due to Non-Disclosure of Finances in Divorce Proceedings.
My Advice as a Divorce Lawyer
A word to the wise, don’t lie, mislead or attempt to defraud your ex or the court. You’ll spend the rest of your life looking over your shoulder wondering whether the past will come back to bite you. If it does, you’ll be paying legal fees and no doubt penalties for your wrong doing. In short, it’s a very costly mistake to make.
Property Millionaire Giles Mackay might be the first since the Sharland/Gohil judgements to pay the price for lying in his divorce settlement after allegedly undervaluing his assets to the extent that a judge would’ve made a different financial order. If Mr Mackay is found to have been dishonest the renegotiated financial settlement could end up costing him millions of pounds.