Vines Legal's A-Z of All Things Family and Matrimonial; X for Xydhias Agreement
Welcome to our Alphabet Information Series. Today’s topic is X for Xydhias Agreement
A Xydhias Agreement is an agreement relating to financial matters reached during the course of negotiations in family law and which subsequently cannot be reneged upon. Even if the specific terms of a draft Court Order have not yet been agreed and one party tries to back out of the agreement, a Court may be prepared to make an Order in the terms reached, or to decide upon unresolved implementation issues or other minor issues.
The Xydhias Agreement was created and brought in to legal use following the case of the same name, Xydhias v Xydhias 1998.
The details of the case are irrelevant here, but for the fact that during the course of negotiations, the parties concluded a draft agreement, which only left two small issues outstanding. After these negotiations, the wife’s solicitors wrote to the Court requesting them to cancel the final hearing and list the case for a hearing dealing simply with the drafting of an Order. The husband then announced, however, that he would be contesting the case and withdrew all existing offers. The wife applied to the Court for him to “show cause” and explain why he should not be bound by the agreement.
The husband argued that normal contractual principles should apply, and that an agreement should only be considered binding once all details have been finalised.
The Court disagreed with the husband’s argument and stated that family law negotiations do not give rise to enforceable contracts and so the principles of contract law do not apply. The Court concluded that, in the interests of keeping the Court list free of unnecessary hearings, parties should be held to deals if they have substantively agreed and the only outstanding points are either trivial or mechanics.
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By Administrator on 28 Jan 2020, 11:21 AM