The potentially record-breaking settlement in the divorce between the ruler of Dubai and his ex-wife Princess Haya provided an insight into what the judge called the “truly opulent and unprecedented standard of living enjoyed by these parties” during their marriage.
The court heard that before their separation in 2019, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum had provided Haya with £83m a year for her household spending plus an allowance of £9m per annum for herself and various ad hoc payments.
Their children, Jalila, 今 14, and Zayed, now nine, had annual allowances of approximately £10m each, as well as access to a fleet of aeroplanes owned by the sheikh, including a custom-fit Boeing 747 upon which he insisted the children should travel, helicopters, a $400m (£303m) superyacht and luxurious properties worth hundreds of millions of pounds. The children and their mother also had support from about 80 スタッフ .
In one summer while they were married, Haya and Sheikh Mohammed spent £2m on strawberries, 裁判所は聞いた.
Among the items Haya unsuccessfully asked to be returned to her were haute couture clothing worth €74m (£63m) and jewellery worth £20m. After a video of the walk-in safe at the beach palace was shown in court, Haya said most valuable items had been removed, leaving mainly costume jewellery worth about £20,000. Asked by the judge whether there was “any point” it being sent to her, she replied “no”.
In the event, Mr Justice Moor ordered Haya’s ex-husband to pay her £13.7m for jewellery and £1m for haute couture clothing (she claimed £32m rather than €74m). She was also awarded £5m to “buy a few reasonable horses and run them for several years”.
Holidays formed a significant portion of the yearly maintenance payments for the children, with £5.1m awarded for nine weeks of foreign holidays a year, two weeks in the UK, plus three long weekends in Jordan and three weekends away in the UK.
Also forming part of the maintenance payments are £1m a year on “leisure” and £277,050 annually on animals, including two ponies and a horse, which the children ride. While the court heard that they had incurred tutoring costs of £250,000 a year, the amount awarded was set at £100,000 per annum.
The court heard that while the sheikh would be able to afford any amount he was directed to pay within reason, Haya’s resources amounted to £100m but were largely tied up in two properties and she had been forced to sell assets worth £15.6m since coming to Britain.
Her desire, expressed in court, for the children to live a “normal life” in the UK, was questioned by the sheikh’s lawyer in light of some of the sums claimed.
For his part, Moor said he would “do my best to come to a conclusion as to what is reasonable while remembering that the exceptional wealth and remarkable standard of living enjoyed by these children during the marriage takes this case entirely out of the ordinary”.
He largely refrained from comment on the amounts involved although he said it was a “legitimate criticism” to question the purchase of three cars for Zayed. Declining to make any award with respect to the children’s cars, 彼は言った: “I do consider it an artificial edifice to talk of children of the ages of these children owning motor vehicles. しかし、彼の債権者, Zayed’s precious motor vehicle has now finally been returned to him.”