TV Presenter Nick Knowles is perhaps best known for hosting long-running BBC show DIY SOS, although he has been the face of a long list of other shows as well. He and estranged wife Jessica Moor, who only married in September 2012, are now locked in a “ bitter divorce battle”, the Daily Mail reports, and the latest bone of contention is reportedly school fees.
According to the paper, in the midst of contentious claim and counter-claim, Jessica has asked for an additional £2,000 a month, on top of the maintenance she already receives, to cover the cost of their three year-old son’s education. Mr Knowles is reported to be unhappy about the request, and to have said he would pay the money directly to their son’s school rather than to Jessica.
Disputes about school fees are common when couples considering private education go their separate ways or those with children already there split up. English divorce law does include provisions for the payment of fees, explains Stowe Family Law Managing Partner Emma Newman.
“The Court has the power to make an order for a parent to pay or make a contribution towards school fees. Where the parents are married that power comes from the Matrimonial Causes Act.”
Agreements made between the parents, before or after separation, are the decisive factor, she continues.
“In making a decision the Court will consider the manner in which the child is currently or was expected to be educated. If the child is not yet being educated privately, it is far more likely that a court will make a school fees order if there is a clear agreement that the child will attend an independent school.”
This applies to Mr Knowles and his estranged wife.
“In this case it is key that Jessica Moor and Nick Knowles visited the school and enrolled their son together. It is also relevant that Nick’s three older children have all been educated privately as it is generally considered appropriate for a child to be treated in the same way as their siblings.”