Mother loses court bid to have son's allowance upped to £800,000

Judge rules current £200,000 annual maintenance paid by Middle Eastern royal for former partner's child is sufficient

A woman who argued her son should be able to “replicate” his “super-rich” royal father’s lifestyle by having boxes at Arsenal’s Emirates stadium and Ascot racecourse has lost a court bid to force the man to increase his maintenance payments.

The family division of the High Court in London heard that the father, a senior member of a Middle Eastern royal family who lives in a “world of opulence”, pays £200,000 a year for the upkeep of the seven-year-old child – whom he has never seen.

His former partner wanted this figure increased to almost £800,000 a year, however. She had told Mr Justice Bodey she wanted the “vast income provision” so that the youngster could “replicate” his father’s lifestyle.

As well as boxes at Arsenal and Ascot, she also wanted the boy to have membership of the exclusive Wentworth golf club, money for domestic staff and first-class flights.

But Mr Justice Bodey said £200,000 a year was enough and ruled against her.

Although the judge did not identify anyone in the ruling, he did say the man was in his 50s and the woman, who grew up in an “affluent” Middle Eastern family, in her 30s, and that the boy lived with his mother in London.

“The parties never lived together,” Mr Justice Bodey  said in his ruling. “The father has never seen [the boy], nor expressed any interest in him.

“The mother, therefore, bears the entire responsibility of caring for him and bringing him up.

“She wishes to do so in a lifestyle commensurate with that of the son of a member of a hugely wealthy royal family.”

Mr Justice Bodey said the man appeared to rank “pretty clearly among the super-rich” and seemed to move “naturally within a world of opulence”.

“Unhappily the mother has a fervent belief that [the child] and therefore she herself, by way of a carer’s allowance, should be allowed a vast income provision to enable [the boy’s] lifestyle to replicate that of the father; but almost without regard to the fact that he is a seven-year-old growing up in London,” said the judge.

“[She] seeks a box at the Emirates and at Ascot for [the child], together with membership of Ascot and Wentworth golf club... [She] refers to needing a nanny/governess/house manager and a housekeeper. 

“She seeks air travel for herself and [the child], first class return twice a year... and for economy flights for a nanny/governess.”

Mr Justice Bodey said he was satisfied the current amount the man was paying was “suitable and appropriate”.

He said he had decided that it would be “just” to dismiss the mother’s application.

The judge said the man and woman had been embroiled in family court litigation for several years.

He said lawyers’ bills ran to “several million pounds” – almost all of which had been paid by the man.

Press Association