Mrs Evans a barrister who took her former husband to back to court complaining that her original £26m divorce settlement was not enough has ended up with her award being reduced by 8m.
At a hearing in July last year Lord Justice Thorpe described their dispute as “puerile” telling them “somebody has to come into the nursery to make some rules”.
Mr Justice Moylan who heard the case recently estimated the couples’ total wealth had now fallen to £40.7m and therefore decided to reduce Mrs Evans share.
It appears from press reports that the couple were penniless when they married in 1995. After setting up an IT firm they earned £41m and were able to buy homes in the UK, US and the Turks and Caicos. At the original hearing Mrs Evans was awarded £26m, half of the couples joint £52m wealth by the court. However, as she feared her husband could legally transfer the company shares thought to be worth at least £40m to another person she successfully applied for a second family Court hearing.
However, the judge did order Mr Evans who remarried last year, to pay his ex £140,000 year maintenance until the sale of the various assets and property when a clean break will be made.
The case had become particularly bitter when Mrs Evans discovered that her ex-husband was planning to give her “replacement engagement ring” to the woman who became his wife. He also admitted that he had lavish gifts worth nearly £135,000 of jewellery, bags and clothing on his current wife.
Although there is a principle that extravagant purchases gifts could be added back into the asset schedule when dividing the assets under a principle known as a Norris add back (so named after the surname of the parties in that case) it is unlikely that in this case in the context of assets of £40.7m such expenditure would be considered wanton.
A full report of the case is awaited. Mr and Mrs Evans have spent a total £2.7m on legal costs.