In Horrigan the Full Court of the Family Court dismissed the Wife’s appeal against the trial judge’s division of the parties assets 78% to the Husband & 22% to the Wife and ordered the Wife to pay the Husband’s costs. The judgement was handed down in February 2020.
At the time of the trial the husband was 64 and the wife 47. The wife was in receipt of maintenance from the husband and the parties had a 7 year old child who lived with the wife 9 days of each fortnight. The parties had lived together for 8 years.
The Trial judge found:
In upholding the trial judge’s decision the Full Court reminded us that the length of the relationship under consideration is a critical issue in considering what weight is to be given to the parties initial financial contributions in determining how the existing asset pool is to be split. Undoubtedly the weight diminishes over time, but with this 8 year relationship those initial contributions still had a marked impact on the outcome. This decision and the Full Court’s refusal to overturn it, will take a few by surprise.