AB v CD [2022] EWFC 19816 September 2022

Published: 23/08/2023 10:49


HHJ Shelton. Hearing on 14–15 July 2022. Cross-applications to vary global periodical payment order for a child aged 19 who is severely disabled and a spousal maintenance order.

Second of three published judgments.

Link to previous judgment

Link to later judgment

The issues remained:

  • The quantum and duration of the child periodical payments.
  • Whether the joints lives order in W’s favour should be discharged.

Since the last judgment, the child had been unwell resulting in admission to hospital for 2 weeks. This adversely affected her sleep and behaviour and added to the care she required from the wife (W).

The child was due to start a specialist college for 3 years. She would live with the wife (W) at weekends and during the school holidays. However, her start at college and transition planned could be disrupted if required surgery was delayed.

The law is summarised in the previous case summary and at paragraphs 28-31 of this judgment.

By this hearing:

  • H was 51 and had returned to work full-time. His income was c.£4450 pcm. He still claimed his outgoings exceeded his income (c.£8000 pcm including the interim maintenance of £1150 pcm). His living arrangements remained the same. He sought to downward vary the child periodical payments to £400 pcm until he retired at 60 and to discharge the joint lives spousal periodical payments because W would no longer be the child’s primary carer save for weekends and school holidays.
  • W was 45. Her benefits income had slightly increased but the same uncertainty as to her future benefits position remained. W sought for the court to make an interim global order of £1,676.29 pcm (£1 spousal and the rest for the child) to preserve her universal credit and for the interim order to be reviewed in 6-7 months’ time.

The uncertainty surrounding W and the child’s benefits position remained. The court made findings as to W and the child’s likely income and the effect on W’s benefits if she began working ([70]–[71]). The court’s findings as to each party’s income needs remained the same. It found that W could not adjust without undue hardship on H’s proposal.

The court held it could not make final orders as it may cause injustice to both parties and it made a further interim global order of £1400 pcm (£1,399 pcm for the child, £1 pcm spousal). The court assessed that without the interim upward variation, W and the child would not survive.


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