Cross-posted from NewKerala.com
LONDON Sept 22 — A court in Britain has awarded an unidentified woman 50,000 pounds a year for maintenance of her three horses in her divorce settlement.
As a part of 1.5 million pounds divorce package, the woman has been given a 900,000 pounds lump sum from her husband, an investment banker, to buy a house with enough land to graze the animals.
The couple from Gloucestershire had been married for 11 years, and were childless.
The judges heard that the horses had almost become a child substitute for the wife, a talented rider who enjoyed eventing.
“During the marriage the horses played a major part in the wife’s life with the consent and encouragement of the husband,” the Telegraph quoted Sir Mark Potter, Britain’s most senior family judge, as saying.
The animals took on this role “all the more so after she lost a baby in 2001 and the husband gave her a third horse to celebrate their tenth anniversary in 2004, to add to her own two horses which she had bought herself for 20,000 pounds out of a personal inheritance in order to justify her eventing.”
The landmark ruling by three appeal judges has made it evident that a couple’s animals could become the next battleground in expensive divorce cases.
District Judge Michael Segal also said that the wife’s love of horses had been a key part of the couple’s lives.