Britain’s Biggest Divorce Settlement

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum – ruler of Dubai and well-known figure in Irish horse racing – has reportedly been ordered to pay Princess Haya bint al-Hussein £554 million as part of Britain’s biggest divorce settlement to date.

The ruler of Dubai, who is estimated to be worth around £10 billion, was ordered by a judge to pay the Jordanian princess £251.5 million for the security of her and their two children, within the next three months.

As part of the divorce settlement, he will also have to supply a bank guarantee amounting to £290 million to cover the maintenance of their two children.

The financial settlement includes £5.1 million per year for holidays and just over £3 million in the form of an education fund.

The total award of £554 million is reportedly £900m less than the princess had pursued.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum married Princess Haya in April 2004. They later divorced in 2019.

Legal fees for both parties have reportedly amounted to at least £150 million during the three years of litigation.

The High Court judgement, made in December, is believed to be the biggest divorce settlement ever awarded by a court in England. It beats the previous divorce settlement record of £450 million which was awarded as part of the divorce of Tatiana Akhmedov and Russian billionaire Farkhad Akhmedov in 2017.

What is a divorce financial settlement?

A financial settlement is an agreement between both parties about how their money and assets will be divided upon divorce.

It is dealt with separately to the divorce process itself, although it often runs concurrently with it.

Once both spouses reach an agreement about how the finances will be split, it is always best to make it legally binding by recording the terms in a consent order which is submitted to the court. Otherwise, one spouse may still be able to make a financial claim against the other in the future.

If an agreement cannot be reached, it may be necessary to go to court to ask a judge to decide. Usually, this should be a last resort, as this route can be time-consuming and costly.

Many couples find they can reach an agreement with some outside help, for example through mediation or solicitor-led negotiations.

If you would like more information about divorce or what a fair financial settlement could look like in your circumstances, get in touch to book your free consultation with one of our experienced divorce solicitors today.

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