The Court of Appeal has recently upheld a decision of the High Court confirming that the English court is best placed to deal with the divorce financial settlement of a British pilot and his Brazilian-born wife.
It is reported that easyJet pilot, Jean Cattin, was on holiday in Brazil with his wife and two children when Mrs Cattin announced that she and the children would not be returning home after the holiday. Mr Cattin flew home immediately and issued divorce proceedings in England. Mrs Cattin issued divorce proceedings in her home country.
The English divorce proceedings were challenged by Mrs Cattin, who argued that Brazil was the more appropriate country to deal with the divorce financial settlement and arrangements for the children. That challenge was blocked by the High Court and the decision later upheld by the Court of Appeal.
The case highlights the increasingly common concept of “forum shopping” – where a husband or wife chooses a country in which to issue divorce proceedings for tactical reasons, usually because that country would produce a financially advantageous settlement.
The case also emphasises the importance of obtaining specialist legal advice before issuing divorce proceedings.