Ex-wives challenge divorce payouts over concealment of wealth

By Lenore Rice

Two ex-wives will go to the Supreme Court to challenge the divorce payouts they received because they have subsequently learned that their husbands lied about the full extent of their wealth in the initial divorce proceedings.

Varsha Gohil received a divorce payout of £270,000 from her solicitor husband Bhadresg Gohil in 2004, but says she has subsequently learned that he had £35million hidden away.

Alison Sharland received £10.3million after her divorce, which she had understood to be half the couple's assets, in particular shares owned by her ex-husband Charles in his company. The couple had disputed the value of the shares at the time, with his accountants saying they were worth £7million and Alison's accountants saying £32million. It subsequently emerged that the company was worth $1billion and that Charles Sharland's shares were therefore worth £150million.

In both cases the courts have since ruled that the husbands had failed to disclose their financial circumstances, but that the divorce settlement would not be changed. The Court of Appeal said Mr Sharland had been dishonest at the time of the original divorce hearing, but did not order any change to the divorce payout. Now, both women have been granted leave to take their cases jointly to the Supreme Court on 8th June.

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