|University||University of Edinburgh (UoE)|
Will and Elizabeth met in 2007 and married soon after when they discovered that Elizabeth was pregnant. Will was 45 at the time of their marriage and Elizabeth was just 18. They now have two children, Jack aged 11 and Tamara aged 6.
Will is a barrister specializing in high-value financial remedy claims and he has a very demanding caseload. Elizabeth has never worked and is a stay at home mother. Over the years the age gap between Elizabeth and Will has become more and more apparent. Elizabeth is very critical of Will’s dress sense, calling him “grandad”, and she constantly tells him that he and his friends are boring.
She hates the decor, which Will had chosen for the family home and has told Will that it looks like an old people’s home. Will has tried to please Elizabeth by undertaking a series of renovations to the family home, which they own jointly. Unfortunately, he is not very good at DIY and he has left a lot of it unfinished, irritating Elizabeth intensely.
The effect of all of the criticism, combined with the extremely heavy caseload that Will has in his professional practice, has led to Will becoming clinically depressed. Rather than trying to help her husband with his illness, Elizabeth has taken to going out three or four times a week with her friends and getting extremely drunk, furthering isolating Will.
One of the friends that Elizabeth has spent a lot of time with is Hector, an old school friend, and they have started a relationship, which Will recently found out about and confronted Elizabeth. She flew into a rage and started hitting Will and throwing things at him, all of which was witnessed by the children. Will is frightened for his safety and that of the children. Both parties wish to divorce.
(a) Advice Will and Elizabeth whether each of them can petition for divorce and if so, identify and explain ONLY the relevant fact(s) that each of them can use;
(b) Advice Will what action he can take to protect himself from Elizabeth, both immediately and in the longer term, and how this can be enforced.