Top London Family Lawyer Deborah Jeff comments on the sentencing of 'property tycoon' Scot Young over non-compliance to respond to questions in the High Court about the whereabouts of his 'missing' millions...
Mr Young, who made a fortune as a fixer for British businessmen and Russian oligarchs, has been accused by former wife Michelle Young, 48, of hiding ‘enormous assets’ to get out of paying the £30,000 a month she had been awarded. Young’s arrears are now “close to £1m” after paying nothing since 2009, the High Court was told.
On Wednesday, the court jailed him for six months for refusing to give his estranged wife details of his alleged £400m fortune.
Deeborah Jeff commented: “The case of Young is a perfect example of the importance of making full financial disclosure in divorce proceedings. Once there is a cloud of suspicion over a spouse’s financial circumstances, that cloud can be very difficult and costly to dispel. It is rare for matters to reach the stage that they have for Mr Young but he has had the time and the access to legal advice with which to comply with various court orders but apparently not the inclination. Imprisonment for contempt of court is the last sanction the judge has for non-compliance with court orders and it’s refreshing to see the court sending this very clear signal to anyone who believes they are exempt from the law, wealthy or not.”
The pair have been embroiled in a bitter divorce battle since 2006. Mr Young says he is bankrupt and cannot pay. Mrs Young says Mr Young has "secreted enormous assets". The pair's claims are due to be fully argued at a trial scheduled to begin late this year.
Seddons (http://seddons.co.uk) is a 20-year-old central London law firm (based at 5 Portman Square) with a total of over 70 staff with 19 partners, including one of the best divorce lawyers in the UK, Deborah Jeff. Her Family department offers a comprehensive range of services, including prenuptial agreements.
Chambers UK notes ‘This team offers clients the full range of family services, and is particularly noted for its expertise on divorce proceedings’ and the Legal 500 says 'Deborah Jeff provides an excellent level of service at Seddons'.