Duxbury v Duxbury: CA 1987

Mr and Mrs Duxbury had been married for 22 years. When, at the end of their marriage, their financial affairs came before the court under the provisions of sections 23 and 24 of the 1973 Act, each wanted a clean break. By the standards of the day, Mr. Duxbury was a wealthy man, and a clean break by way of a lump sum was the obvious answer. Mrs Duxbury’s accountant, a Mr Lawrence, devised a computer programme which, based on her life expectancy on the tables, calculated a lump sum for her which would give her a specified income for life (index linked), but on the premise that, over the years, she had access to and spent the capital, with the result that on her death, nothing, notionally, was left. The court considered the calculation in the light of the wife’s remarriage.
Held: There is no principle of law that a prospect of remarriage must be taken into account and reflected in the award
Ackner LJ said: ‘The essential issue in this case is simply this: should the judge in the circumstances have made a substantially smaller lump sum award, or a substantially smaller lump sum award, coupled with an order for periodic payments, because of the possibility that Mrs Duxbury might in future marry Mr Black with whom she was now living?’

Ackner LJ
[1992] Fam 62, [1987] 1 FLR 7, [1991] 3 WLR 639
Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 23
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedWhite v White HL 26-Oct-2000
The couple going through the divorce each had substantial farms and wished to continue farming. It had been a long marriage.
Held: Where a division of the assets of a family would satisfy the reasonable needs of either party on an ancillary . .
CitedDixon v Marchant CA 24-Jan-2008
The parties had only recently settled their ancillary relief proceedings by consent when the former wife remarried. The former husband sought the setting aside of the order. The wife had denied the relationship. The judge had found the conditions in . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Leading Case

Updated: 10 November 2021; Ref: scu.197915