Compensation Monies and Matrimonial Assets
In our line of work, we see the strongest relationships break down that tugs our heartstrings. Yet most rewardingly, we are tasked with the noble job of listening to clients share their personal stories and helping them move on with their lives – one step at a time.
The definition of a matrimonial asset
Very briefly, a typical matrimonial asset is defined as follows: -
- An asset acquired by effort and not as a gift or inheritance;
- An asset acquired during marriage or in connection to parties’ effort during the marriage.
Common examples include parties’ matrimonial property in joint names and parties’ joint bank accounts.
Recently, the High Court decided on the issue of whether compensation monies can be included into the pool of matrimonial assets.
When can Compensation monies be a matrimonial asset?
In this case, the Husband received some compensation monies as he had suffered serious injuries from a road traffic accident in 2012.
In the Lower Court
The lower court judge decided that some but not the entire amount of the compensation monies should be part of the matrimonial pool.
Compensation monies for the following items were included in the matrimonial pool: -
- medical expenses;
- past loss of earnings;
- damage to motorcycle fees; and
- surveyors’ fees.
This was because payment for these expenses were paid with monies contributed by both parties during the marriage.
As the Wife had attended to the Husband’s needs when he was injured, the lower court judge also included the monies that were awarded to the Husband for his pain and suffering, to the matrimonial pool.
In the High Court
|Compensation for pain and suffering||
|Compensation for loss of earnings||
|Compensation for hospital and transport expenses||