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Matrimonial Proceedings and Property Act 1970

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

Provisions relating to orders made by magistrates' courts in matrimonial proceedings

30Order for maintenance of party to marriage made by magistrates' court to cease to have effect on remarriage of that party

(1)At the end of section 7 of the Matrimonial Proceedings (Magistrates' Courts) Act 1960 there shall be added the following subsections—

(4)Where after the making by a magistrates' court of a matrimonial order consisting of or including a provision such as is mentioned in paragraph (b) or (c) of section 2(1) of this Act the marriage of the parties to the proceedings in which that order was made is dissolved or annulled but the order continues in force, then, subject to subsection (5) of this section, that order or, as the case may be, that provision thereof shall cease to have effect on the remarriage of the party in whose favour it was made, except in relation to any arrears due under it on the date of such remarriage and shall not be capable of being revived.

(5)Subsection (4) of this section shall not apply where the party in whose favour such an order as is therein mentioned was made remarried before the commencement of the Matrimonial Proceedings and Property Act 1970.

(6)For the avoidance of doubt it is hereby declared that references in this section to remarriage include references to a marriage which is by law void or voidable.

(2)Subsections (4), (5) and (6) of section 7 of the Matrimonial Proceedings (Magistrates' Courts) Act 1960 shall apply in relation to an order consisting of or including a provision such as is mentioned in section 2(1)(b) or (c) of that Act made by a magistrates' court and confirmed in accordance with section 3 of the Maintenance Orders (Facilities for Enforcement) Act 1920 (which enables a magistrates' court to make a maintenance order against a person resident in a part of Her Majesty's dominions outside the United Kingdom but provides that the order shall have no effect unless and until confirmed by a competent court in that part) as they apply in relation to such an order as is referred to in the said subsection (4), but with the modification that for the reference to the making of such an order as is referred to in that subsection there shall be substituted a reference to the confirmation in accordance with the said section 3 of the order referred to in this subsection.

31Sums paid after cessation of order of magistrates' court by reason of remarriage may be ordered to be repaid in certain cases

After section 13 of the Matrimonial Proceedings (Magistrates' Courts) Act 1960 there shall be inserted the following section— Orders for repayment in certain cases of sum paid after cessation of order by reason of remarriage.

13A(1)Where—

(a)an order to which this section applies or a provision thereof has ceased to have effect by reason of the remarriage of the person entitled to payments under the order, and

(b)the person liable to make payments under the order made payments in accordance with it in respect of a period after the date of such remarriage in the mistaken belief that the order or provision was still subsisting,

no proceedings in respect of a cause of action arising out of the circumstances mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b) above shall be maintainable by the person so liable or his or her personal representatives against the person so entitled or her or his personal representatives, but on an application made under this section the court may exercise the powers conferred on it by the following subsection. This section applies to an order in relation to which subsection (4) of section 7 of this Act, as amended by the Matrimonial Proceedings and Property Act 1970, applies.

(2)The court may order the respondent to an application made under this section to pay to the applicant a sum equal to the amount of the payments made in respect of the period mentioned in subsection (1)(b) of this section or, if it appears to the court that it would be unjust to make that order, it may either order the respondent to pay to the applicant such lesser sum as it thinks fit or dismiss the application.

(3)An application under this section may be made by the person liable to make payments under an order to which this section applies or his or her personal representatives and may be made against the person entitled to payments under the order or her or his personal representatives.

(4)An application under this section may be made in proceedings in the High Court or a county court for leave to enforce, or the enforcement of, the payment of arrears under an order to which this section applies, but except as aforesaid such an application shall be made to a county court, and accordingly references in this section to the court are references to the High Court or a county court, as the circumstances require.

(5)An order under this section for the payment of any sum may provide for the payment of that sum by instalments of such amount as may be specified in the order.

(6)The jurisdiction conferred on a county court by this section shall be exercisable by a county court notwithstanding that by reason of the amount claimed in an application under this section the jurisdiction would not but for this subsection be exercisable by a county court.

(7)Section 13(1) and (2) of this Act shall not apply to an order under this section.

(8)The clerk of a magistrates' court to whom any payments under an order to which this section applies are required to be made, and the collecting officer under an attachment of earnings order made to secure payments under the first mentioned order, shall not be liable—

(a)in the case of that clerk, for any act done by him in pursuance of the first mentioned order after the date on which that order or a provision thereof ceased to have effect by reason of the remarriage of the person entitled to payments under it, and

(b)in the case of the collecting officer, for any act done by him after that date in accordance with any enactment or rule of court specifying how payments made to him in compliance with the attachment of earnings order are to be dealt with,

if, but only if, the act was one which he would have been under a duty to do had the first mentioned order or a provision thereof not ceased to have effect as aforesaid and the act was done before notice in writing of the fact that the person so entitled had remarried was given to him by or on behalf of that person, the person liable to make payments under the first mentioned order or the personal representatives of either of those persons.

(9)In this section " collecting officer ", in relation to an attachment of earnings order, means the officer of the High Court, the registrar of a county court or the clerk of a magistrates' court to whom a person makes payments in compliance with the order.

32Restriction on enforcement in High Court or county court of certain orders of magistrates' courts

At the end of section 13 of the Matrimonial Proceedings (Magistrates' Courts) Act 1960 there shall be added the following subsections:—

(5)A person shall not be entitled to enforce through the High Court or any county court the payment of any arrears due under an order made by virtue of this Act without the leave of that court if those arrears became due more than twelve months before proceedings to enforce the payment of them are begun.

(6)The court hearing an application for the grant of leave under subsection (5) of this section may refuse leave, or may grant leave subject to such restrictions and conditions (including conditions as to the allowing of time for payment or the making of payment by instalments) as that court thinks proper, or may remit the payment of such arrears or any part thereof.

(7)An application for the grant of leave under the said subsection (5) shall be made in such manner as may be prescribed by rules of court.

33Minor corrections of Matrimonial Proceedings (Magistrates' Courts) Act 1960, s. 7(3)

Section 7(3) of the Matrimonial Proceedings (Magistrates' Courts) Act 1960 (which provides that where after the making by a magistrates' court of a matrimonial or interim order proceedings between, and relating to the marriage of, the parties to the proceedings in which the order was made have been begun in the High Court, the High Court may direct that the order shall cease to have effect on a date specified by that court) shall be amended as follows:—

(a)after the words " the High Court ", where first occurring,

there shall be inserted the words

or a county court;

(b)for the words " the High Court", where next occurring,

there shall be substituted the words

the court in which the proceedings or any application made therein are or is pending; and

(c)for the words " the High Court may specify" there shall be substituted the words

may be specified in the direction.

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