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(1) KC (2) NNC v (1) CITY OF WESTMINSTER SOCIAL & COMMUNITY SERVICES DEPARTMENT (2) IC (A PROTECTED PARTY, BY HIS LITIGATION FRIEND THE OFFICIAL SOLICITOR)

The marriage, celebrated in and valid according to the law of Bangladesh, of a Bangladeshi woman to a British national who lacked the capacity to marry under English law by reason of his mental impairment, was not recognised as a valid marriage in the jurisdiction of England and Wales.

1 April 2008

The appellant wife (W) appealed against ancillary relief orders made by a district judge and, on appeal, a circuit judge, following her separation from the respondent husband (H). W and H had married in 1992 and separated in 2004. They had a child born in 1992. H had no assets when he met W and was earning very little. W had inherited a substantial sum of money and was living off that when she met H. Between 1992 and 1997 neither spouse worked, and they were supported by W’s capital during that time. The parties set up a car wash business in 1997, which H had run ever since. W bought the business premises in her sole name, and H paid W rent for the premises at a rate well below what the market rent would have been. The matrimonial assets, comprising the former matrimonial home, W’s liquid assets and the car wash business, totalled around £1.37m. Both the district judge and circuit judge held that there was no reason to depart from the yardstick of equality, and ordered the tran...

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