Keen readers of my blog Love, Life and the Law may remember this story in March 2018, understood to involve the couple at the centre of the highest divorce award made to date in an English court.
A Russian billionaire had appealed to the Court of Appeal against an order made in 2016 that he, the husband, pay his former wife £453m. The Judge had found the total value of the wife’s claim to be £453,576,152, comprising 41.5% of the total marital assets, and considered a divorce award of that sum to be justified in all the circumstances.
Two further years’ on and Tatiana Akhmedova is still trying to get Farkhad Akhmedov to pay her share of the original 2016 settlement. This time her legal action is being funded by Burford Capital who are taking legal action in Britain in a bid to trace the assets she says her ex-husband has tried to put beyond her reach.
Funding Litigators, such as Burford Capital, pay for the legal costs of a case they join in return for a percentage of any proceeds awarded.
The details of the case being heard at the Family Division of the High Court in London are becoming increasingly salacious as their eldest son, Temur Akhmedov give evidence to Mrs Justice Gwynneth Knowles that his businessman father, had left his mother, to “her own devices” and “she him” following the breakdown of their 20-year marriage.
Reported here Farkhad Akhmedov had a relationship with a woman who he is now married to. His mother once referred to the woman as a “whore” who wanted to “take everything away from us.”
Ms Akhmedova had a relationship with the brother of one of his friends and with an art dealer, he said. He recalled one of the art dealer’s socks – which bore a name tag – turning up once in family laundry.
Ms Akhmedova who describes herself as “Russian by origin” but lives in London – and hence the place of the original divorce petition- is also now suing Temur, their 27 year old son, who is now a London trader. She says he has helped his father hide assets and owes her nearly £70 million. He denies the allegations against him and says his mother’s claim should be dismissed.
He agreed, when questioned by a lawyer representing his mother, that his father had put in place a structure to ensure that an award made by a judge was not paid.
But he said: “I was not the lieutenant or the orchestrator of these schemes.” He did not conceal assets but lost the money on “risky” trades while he was studying at the London School of Economics, according to Bloomberg.
“I could never have imagined that our relationship would break down to the extent that she would bring litigation against me, particularly on the scale that is currently taking place.”
He added: “I feel that she must hate me and, after everything I have already experienced in my childhood, this causes me an immense amount of pain and distress.”
“That the sums were astronomical is nothing to the point,” Temur’s attorney, Robert Levy, reportedly said in a legal filing. “Some of the extremely rich lavish their children with unimaginable sums. That is what Farkhad and Tatiana did during their marriage.”
Tatiana accuses her son of “wholeheartedly” helping her ex-husband Farkhad, leaving her to pursue cases in at least six countries according to CityAM.
Ms Akhmedova has told the judge that she loves her son and hopes their relationship can be rebuilt.
One might well ask what could she possibly spend £453,576,152 on? Well a lot of it will now have to be assigned to her litigation funders, in time.
She said suing her son had been an “incredibly difficult” decision.
I don’t imagine it was a very difficult decision for her litigation funder Burford Capital. Ms Akhmedova’s case has now been heard three times in the English Family Division and the award stands. All they now have to do is find where it’s stashed.
If you are affected by similar issues or would like to have a related discussion in confidence, please call me on 020 7091 2869 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The above is accurate as at 18 December 2020. The information above may be subject to change during these ever-changing times.
The content of this note should not be considered legal advice and each matter should be considered on a case by case basis.