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Civil partnership financial dispute begins in Court of Appeal

A claim by the ex-civil partner of a deceased property developer has reached the Court of Appeal.

Helen Roocroft, now 41 and originally from Bolton in Lancashire, enjoyed an 18 year relationship with Carol Ann Ainscow, who became wealthy redeveloping properties on fashionable Canal Street in Manchester. The couple entered a civil partnership in 2008, but the relationship collapsed not long afterwards and they separated in 2009. Their partnership was formally dissolved in 2010.

During the accompanying financial relief proceedings, Ms Ainscow insisted that she had lost substantial in the 2008 recession and Roocroft was persuaded to accept a financial settlement of £162,000.

The developer was later diagnosed with a brain tumour. After her death in 2013 at the age of 55, Ms Roocroft claims to have discovered that her ex had been worth far more than she had claimed during the proceedings, and in fact had assets of several million.

She returned to court, seeking to overturn the financial settlement she had agreed with ex-partner before her death. Her initial claim in 2014 was dismissed but she was granted permission to appeal in 2014.

Ms Roocroft’s case begins in the Court of Appeal today.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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