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Boris Johnson only finally settled his divorce 11 days ago with ‘£4million agreement’

UK News

Boris Johnson only settled his divorce with estranged wife Marina Wheeler 11 days before announcing he and girlfriend Carrie Symonds are engaged and expecting a baby.

The Prime Minister and Marina Wheeler, who separated in 2018, were given the go-ahead to officially end their marriage of more than 25 years on February 18. 

Based on Mr Johnson’s estimated cash and assets, Ms Wheeler could be receiving around £4million if split equally between the two.

Boris Johnson only settled his divorce with estranged wife Marina Wheeler (pictured together in 2018) 11 days before announcing he and girlfriend Carrie Symonds are engaged and expecting a baby

Boris Johnson only settled his divorce with estranged wife Marina Wheeler (pictured together in 2018) 11 days before announcing he and girlfriend Carrie Symonds are engaged and expecting a baby

Boris Johnson only settled his divorce with estranged wife Marina Wheeler (pictured together in 2018) 11 days before announcing he and girlfriend Carrie Symonds are engaged and expecting a baby

Just 11 days after the settlement, a spokesperson for Mr Johnson, 55, and his 31-year-old partner announced that the couple are expecting their first baby together.

Last Tuesday, Judge Sarah Gibbons oversaw a private hearing in the Central Family Court in London, which neither party attended.

Based on Mr Johnson's estimated cash and assets, Ms Wheeler could be receiving around 4million if split equally between the two.

Based on Mr Johnson's estimated cash and assets, Ms Wheeler could be receiving around 4million if split equally between the two.

Based on Mr Johnson’s estimated cash and assets, Ms Wheeler could be receiving around £4million if split equally between the two

During the short hearing, she gave Ms Wheeler permission to apply for a Decree Absolute, which would bring the marriage to an end.

A case number revealed Mr Johnson and Ms Wheeler were involved in a dispute over money or assets.

Marina Claire Wheeler was named as the ‘petitioner’ and ‘applicant’ in the case, while Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson was named as the ‘respondent’.

Mr Johnson was said to have had £6.5million in cash and assets as of September 2018, but will have likely seen his wealth rise since becoming Prime Minister last July.

It is therefore plausible that Ms Wheeler will be receiving around £4million if it is an equal split. 

However, the judge said no detail from the case relating to money can be revealed in reports, apart from what is already in the public domain. 

Judge Gibbons gave Ms Wheeler permission to apply for the decree absolute ‘out of time’.

This suggests that she was granted a decree nisi by the courts more than a year ago.

Marina Claire Wheeler was named as the 'petitioner' and 'applicant' in the case, while Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson was named as the 'respondent'. Pictured: The couple together in 2015

Marina Claire Wheeler was named as the 'petitioner' and 'applicant' in the case, while Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson was named as the 'respondent'. Pictured: The couple together in 2015

Marina Claire Wheeler was named as the ‘petitioner’ and ‘applicant’ in the case, while Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson was named as the ‘respondent’. Pictured: The couple together in 2015

How Boris’s second divorce could be finalised in days

Judge Gibbons gave Ms Wheeler permission to apply for a decree absolute ‘out of time’. 

This suggests that she was granted a decree nisi by the courts more than a year ago.

Those who are successfully granted a decree nisi have up to a year to apply for the next stage of divorce, the decree absolute.

Should the applicant fail to do so within 12 months – as was the case with Ms Wheeler –  they are required to reapply for permission for the decree absolute and explain the reason for the delay, which is what occurred in court today.

It is likely that the application for an decree absolute was delayed by Ms Wheeler while both parties discussed a financial settlement, which the court also heard today had been agreed.

As Ms Wheeler was granted permission to reapply for the decree absolute by the judge this afternoon, she can now make her final application at any point from today.

Once she does so, a divorce certificate will be sent to both parties, likely within a week, that officially ends the marriage. 

Those who are successfully granted a decree nisi have up to a year to apply for the next stage of divorce, the decree absolute.

Should the applicant fail to do so within 12 months – as was the case with Ms Wheeler – they are required to reapply for permission for the decree absolute and explain the reason for the delay, which is what occurred in court in February. 

It is likely that the application for an decree absolute was delayed by Ms Wheeler while both parties discussed a financial settlement, which the court also heard had been agreed.

As Ms Wheeler was granted permission to reapply for the decree absolute by the judge this afternoon, she can now make her final application at any point from today. 

Once she does so, a divorce certificate will be sent to both parties, likely within a week, that officially ends the marriage.

The couple first announced that they had separated and were going through the process of divorce in September 2018.

Within months, Mr Johnson had moved in with his current girlfriend Miss Symonds, 31.

Miss Symonds’ status remains a delicate subject as the Prime Minister is still technically married to his estranged wife Ms Wheeler.

It has been suggested in the past that Miss Symonds could not become a fully-fledged ‘first lady’ until the couple were married.

Mr Johnson was coy when asked about the subject last year, telling reporters that marriage speculation was ‘a tiny bit premature’.

Ms Wheeler and Mr Johnson married in 1993 and have four children. They separated in 2018.

The couple announced that they had separated and were going through the process of divorce in September 2018 – saying that ‘as friends we will continue to support our four children in the years ahead’.

Mr Johnson was a childhood friend of Ms Wheeler – the daughter of BBC journalist Charles Wheeler – when they were both pupils at the European School in Brussels.

He met his first wife Allegra Mostyn-Owen while they were students at Oxford, and they wed in 1987, but the marriage was annulled in 1993 and he married Ms Wheeler later that year. The couple have two sons and two daughters.

Mr Johnson has repeatedly come under scrutiny over his personal life. 

The Appeal Court ruled in 2013 that the public had a right to know that he had fathered a daughter during an adulterous liaison while Mayor of London in 2009.

In 2004, he was sacked from the Tory frontbench over a reported affair with journalist Petronella Wyatt.

Last year Ms Wheeler, a QC, revealed she had been diagnosed with cervical cancer but recovered after undergoing two operations.

Talking about her diagnosis, Ms Wheeler said: ‘I was unimpressed. Clutching a leaflet, I left thinking: “That’s absurd. I have no time for this. Quite apart from anything else, I have a book to write.” I had already missed my deadline twice.’

Talking about her mother’s diagnosis, Mr Johnson and Ms Wheeler’s eldest child Lara said: ‘My mother’s illness wasn’t something I had posted about or alluded to in any way online. It had — inevitably — been very hard.

‘When she was diagnosed in May she had no symptoms — she was busy working as a QC, as well as writing a memoir about her own mother’s family in India and Pakistan.

‘During that tough time, I didn’t stop using social media altogether. In fact, I was scrolling through Instagram on a regular basis.

‘But while I used it as a numbing distraction, it didn’t even occur to me to add pictures of my own life at the time — of hospitals and hand-holding.’ 

DailyMail Online


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