Adams v Adams (No 1): 1997

Lord Gill said: ‘The pursuer next relies on s 9(1)(b) (as read with s 9(2) and s 11(2).
She argues that the defender has enjoyed an economic advantage in that he has been able to further his career whereas she has prejudiced hers by bringing up the children. I accept that the pursuer has suffered an economic disadvantage in this respect. On the other hand in all the years during which they lived together, the defender contributed more than the pursuer to the household finances and during the period when she was out of employment, he supported the family on his own. It is not suggested that the defender ever failed to maintain the family in a good standard of living. In my view this is a counterbalancing consideration which I am entitled by section 11 (2) to apply. The pursuer’s economic disadvantage is not the worst that she could have suffered. She was able to return to her professional employment soon after the birth of each child and she has for some considerable time been in full-time pensioned employment and making her own contributions to a top up pension. I distinguish this case from a case such as Loudon v Loudon where the property was decided in the proportions 55/45 per cent in the pursuer’s favour largely on the basis that the pursuer was untrained and had no pension and that there was a great disparity between her assets and those of the defender (at 1994 SLT p 385C). I distinguish this case also from McCormick v McCormick, where the wife was at a disadvantage in that it would be difficult for her to gain employment at her age in her former profession (at p 10); and from Cunniff v Cunniff where the wife who received a transfer order had not worked for over 20 years, had an earning power not remotely comparable with that of her husband and, if not given the matrimonial home, would not have been able to afford alternative accommodation (at pp12-13). I conclude therefore that in this case an unequal division in the pursuer’s favour is not justified by s 9(1)(b).’


Lord Gill


1997 SLT 144




CitedLoudon v Loudon SCS 1994
Lord Milligan said: ‘I have considered carefully counsel’s submission on the question of the appropriate allocation of the matrimonial property. I am left in no doubt whatsoever that this should be an allocation in which, in the whole circumstances, . .

Cited by:

CitedCM v STS SCS 2-Sep-2008
The pursuer sought payment of substantial sums, having been disadvantaged by ceasing work to care for the parties’ children. She also asserted that the defender had been advantaged by her taking the care of the children. The parties were not married . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 02 May 2022; Ref: scu.277306