An “unprecedented” legal bid by a 41-year-old man to force his parents to support him financially has failed in court.
The qualified solicitor argued that he was a vulnerable adult who would be at risk of harm without support from his wealthy parents. The claimant said his parents had “nurtured his dependency” on them for 20 years and was now reliant on their money.
This support included allowing the son to live in their London flat and covering his bills. However, their relationship had deteriorated and the parents withdrew their financial support.
The judge, Sir James Mumby, described the case as “most unusual” and believed it was “unprecedented” in the country. He rejected the case and ordered the son to pay his parents’ £57,425 legal costs.
The judge said that provisions for parents to fund their children into adulthood were not relevant in this case. Sir James also rejected an application for permission to appeal.
“His further attempts to expand and reopen the argument are an abuse of process,” the judge said. “Enough is enough. There must be an end to this.”
Although the son is degree educated, has a masters in taxation and is a qualified solicitor, he had been out of work since 2011 owing to “various difficulties and mental health disabilities”.
He is now studying to become a chartered tax adviser and was taking law school admission exams. His lawyer Tim Amos said that his “very wealthy” parents could afford to cover his costs.
The parents, who now live in Dubai, disputed this.
Sir James said: “Conventional wisdom and practice would suggest that these provisions were never intended to be used and cannot be used to fund the education of a perpetual student.”