A woman battling her amputee ex-husband for the lion's share of his £500,000 compensation has won her right to over half of his money in a landmark ruling, after the Appeal court declared her and their children's immediate needs were more important than those of the disabled man.
Lord Justice Thorpe ruled that the money Kevin Mansfield received in 1998 after losing a leg in a road smash - five years before he met his former wife Cathryn - ought to be 'available to all his family' and that her needs and those of their children are 'primary' and outweigh his own.
Mr Mansfield, 41 now faces having to sell his home, a specially adapted bungalow in Chelmsford, Essex - to meet the court's order that he pay £285,000 to 37-year-old Cathryn, so she can buy a new home for herself and their two children.
I was really puzzled and bewildered by this. And the immediate reaction was outrage but then the cooler head prevailed. What a terrible decision to make for the judge. Who do you look after first? the amputee? the wife? the kids? as it so happens, it was the kids which came first. And then i put myself in the man’s position and I couldn't. Outrage would have been an easy option and i can only thank the Lord that I am not faced with making such a decision. What a horrible situation. What can you do? not give money to the kids? or force them to live in their dad’s house? One can mumble something about feckless couples who divorce far too easily. What a mess.