Ant McPartlin, one half of the double act Ant and Dec sadly announced last week that he is to divorce makeup artist wife Lisa Armstrong. The couple have been married 11 years and together 23 years but unfortunately have made the difficult decision to separate. Their fortune is said to be approximately £62 million, including a London home, worth £6 million and a luxury villa in Portugal.
Reports suggest that Ant wants the couple to divide the finances equally. Both Lisa and Ant have been successful in their careers and despite one party (more than likely Ant) contributing more to the fortune it is likely that the Court’s would award Lisa a 50/50 split.
Many are likely to be speculating whether Lisa is obtaining a more favourable settlement because as we have all learnt Ant has faced some troubles over the last few years, resulting in him having to attend rehab last year for drug addiction. However, a person will not be penalised financially if they are the person being divorced. The behaviour during the marriage does not automatically affect the financial settlement that a person will receive. Bad behaviour during the marriage will generally only have an impact on a financial settlement if it is particularly extreme e.g.; fraud or murder.
An equal division of assets is the starting point in cases but often Judges move away from this ideology when reviewing the circumstances; i.e. children to the marriage, whether both parties are employed. Given that Ant and Lisa do not have any children and are both successful in their own right the judge may have moved away from the ‘yard of equality’. The question is though how important is it to be amicable?
Ant and Lisa are said to be amicable and hoping to avoid attending Court. An agreed settlement should always be attempted. This can be achieved through negotiations or mediation and then for a Solicitor to draft a consent order.