Gambling Husband Loses Out

The Family Court was asked to consider the distribution of matrimonial assets in a 20 year marriage. The husband had been the primary bread winner and the wife was the primary home maker. They had two children and a relatively small asset pool of about $400,000.

In what would otherwise have been a 50/50 distribution between them soon turned into a 75/25 split in the wife’s favour.

The court accepted that the husband had wasted money on gambling and associated spending on alcohol and food during the course of the marriage. For that the Court made an adjustment of 5% in favour of the wife.

The Judge made a further adjustment of 20% in favour of the wife because:

  • the children would be living with the wife, therefore the wife’s living expenses would be greater (even after allowing for the husband’s assessed child support payments);
  • the husband had a greater earning potential;
  • the husband had built a house for himself after separation whilst the wife and children continued to rent.

It is surprising how often I hear clients tell me “… and I think half and half is fair”. Most times it is unfair.

Areas of Law

Family Law

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