FF v KF, Court of Appeal - Family Division, May 12, 2017, [2017] EWHC 1093 (Fam)

Issuing Organization:Family Division
Actores:FF v KF
Resolution Date:May 12, 2017

This judgment was delivered in private. The judge directs that this anonymised version of the judgment may be published. No report of the case may identify the parties.

Case No: MA13D01518

Neutral Citation Number: [2017] EWHC 1093 (Fam)



Royal Courts of Justice

Strand, London, WC2A 2LL

Date: 12/05/2017

Before :


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Between :

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Robert Peel QC (instructed by Camilla Baldwin) for the Appellant

Patrick Chamberlayne QC (instructed by Sears Tooth) for the Respondent

Hearing dates: 11 May 2017

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JudgmentMr Justice Mostyn:

  1. I shall refer in this judgment to the appellant as ``the husband'' and to the respondent as ``the wife''.

  2. On 30 August 2016, His Honour Judge Wallwork gave his principal judgment. Following requests for amplification from both parties he gave a supplementary judgment on 29 March 2017. This is my judgment on the appeal by the husband against both judgments.

  3. The appeal was listed to be heard ``in open court''. This was an administrative error. Appeals to the High Court from the Family Court are governed by FPR 27.10. Thus, the default position is that they are heard in private, but representatives of the media may attend by virtue of FPR 27.11 and PD 27B. Should they do so, then in a case concerning children, section 97 of the Children Act 1989 will prevent identification of the child. In any event, a reporting restriction order preventing identification of the parties and of their financial affairs may be made (see Appleton v News Group Newspapers Ltd [2015] EWHC 2689 (Fam)). In this case no order was made under rule 27.10 on the granting of permission directing that the appeal be heard in open court. I was not asked to make such an order, and I heard the case, in the usual way, in private. I have decided that there is no good reason why the parties should be identified, and that therefore this judgment should be anonymised.

  4. By virtue of FPR 30.12(3)(a) this court may only allow the appeal if it is satisfied that the decision below was ``wrong'' (the husband does not argue that rule 30.12(3)(b) applies). Where the decision below is the result of the exercise of a discretionary power, and where there is no complaint about the findings of fact made, the appellant demonstrates wrongness by showing that the discretion miscarried. A miscarriage will be shown where the court has failed to apply binding authority or otherwise erred in principle; or has taken into account irrelevant matters; or has failed to take into account relevant matters; or has failed sufficiently to set out its reasoning.

  5. The husband is now 65, and the wife is now 38. They commenced their relationship in 2004. They became engaged and a marriage ceremony was fixed for 27 December 2007. However, three days before the ceremony the husband called it off, with the consequence that the wife, who is Ukrainian, had to leave the country. In October 2010 the parties rekindled their relationship. They resumed cohabitation in April 2011. They married in Las Vegas on 3 October 2011. They separated on 23 September 2013. So, the actual marriage was for less than two years, although the most recent period of cohabitation was for 2½ years. However, the parties' relationship stretched over nine years punctuated by a separation of three years. Everyone seems to have been content to have characterised...

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