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Wife keeps her home because husband failed to reveal affair

A woman has succeeded in keeping her home because her husband did not tell her he was having an affair when he persuaded her that they should remortgage the property.

The issue arose after the husband got into debt. He persuaded his wife to agree to remortgage the home so he could pay his creditors.

However, the wife then discovered that he had been having an affair and this led to them divorcing. The husband then lost his job and was later made bankrupt.

The wife acquired the home for £1 from his trustee in bankruptcy. However, she then found she could not pay the instalments due to the company which had financed the remortgage.

The company then began legal proceedings and the court decided that it was entitled to repossess the house.

However, that decision has now been overturned by the Court of Appeal. It held that when the wife was asked by her husband to remortgage the home she was entitled to be given all the relevant information that might influence her decision.

In agreeing to her husband’s request, she was working on the assumption that he was as committed to their marriage as she was. Had she known of her husband’s affair she would probably have reached a different conclusion.

The affair should therefore have been disclosed. The husband’s failure to make that disclosure amounted to undue influence on his wife which was sufficient to invalidate the mortgage transaction between them.

Her appeal was therefore allowed.

Please contact us if you would more information about remortgaging a property or issues relating to matrimonial law.

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