Judge pleads for couple in inordinately expensive divorce proceedings to see sense

A couple involved in an extraordinarily costly divorce battle have been urged to find a resolution or else risk financial ruin after their combined legal expenses soared past the £850,000 mark.

In 2009, Aloke Ray, a 41-year old lawyer married Charoo Sekhri, an anaesthetist two years his junior but just 4 years later, they are engaged in bitter divorce proceedings which are taking a hefty chunk out of their combined £4million riches.

The couple met in London but later relocated to Singapore and had a son. The country in which divorce proceedings should take place has been the cause of great tension and as a result the process has now dragged on. High Court Judge Mr Justice Holman encouraged the pair to consider the grave financial consequences of their battle and added that he was shocked that two professionals of such standing and intellect could allow the situation to get so out of hand.

It is thought that each party has spent around £430,000 in legal bills in different parts of the world – meaning that getting divorce has wiped out nearly 25% of their considerable  fortune.

Despite only marrying at the end of 2009, the arguments between the two were so regular that Dr Sekhri filed for divorce in London in the summer of 2012 in the hope that proceedings could be pursued in the UK – a good example of so-called “forum shopping”, a subject on which we have blogged before.. However, Mr Ray, who is somewhat ironically a partner specialising in dispute resolution at an American family law firm was not happy with the country chosen and the legal bill has been rising ever since.

At the hearing in the Family Division, Mr Justice Homan ruled Dr Sekhi should pursue the divorce through the English courts given that both she and Mr Ray are legally domiciled in the UK.

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