Husband ordered to pay estranged wife R70 000 monthly maintenance

A man has been ordered to pay his wife more than R70 000 maintenance each month, the Western Cape High Court has ordered.

A man has been ordered to pay his wife more than R70 000 maintenance each month, the Western Cape High Court has ordered.

Published Oct 19, 2023


The Western Cape High Court has ordered a man to pay his wife more than R70 000 maintenance each month.

Married with an antenuptial contract, the couple have four children together, the youngest being 18 years old, and have been living separately since March last year.

Earlier this year, the wife instituted divorce proceedings.

While the court described their lifestyle as “enjoying a very comfortable existence during their marriage”, the wife described their lifestyle as “a life of relative luxury”, while the husband referred to it as an “above average modest lifestyle”.

The court heard the husband’s monthly expenses were in the region of R366 766.

According to the judgment, the wife sought monthly maintenance in the amount of R96 925 while the husband was to keep paying her medical aid, cellphone contract and levies for an apartment she moved into.

She also wanted an annual sum of R260 000 for holidays and local and overseas travel, and continued use of a holiday home in Nieu Bethesda, Eastern Cape, with reimbursement for payment of domestic staff there.

The wife had an Honours degree in psychology and was finalising her PhD in neuroscience at a Cape Town university. She has not worked since 1997 and has spent most of her adult life raising their children.

The husband has been the sole breadwinner of the family and was one of the founders of the Tribeca Coffee Company International Group.

According to the judgment, the husband is already paying – and tendered to continue paying – a monthly amount of just over R80 000 for his estranged wife’s maintenance.

Since the start of their divorce proceedings, the wife had drawn up three different schedules which detailed her monthly expenses.

“In March 2023, the wife produced yet another budget of monthly expenses (the third schedule).

“On this occasion, the applicant claimed that she required R128 298 per month – an increase of R18 000 from the second scheduled and R58 000 from the first schedule.

“The amount of R128 298 appears excessive.

“For example, around R15 000 per month is claimed for personal care (excluding a Pilates class (R3 466) which is a new expense).

“Nearly R20 000 per month is claimed for groceries, which by any standards is excessive for one person’s needs. The schedule also includes a loan repayment of R7 551, which is in respect of renovations to the applicant’s new apartment which were not consented to by the husband, as well as R15 388 in respect of overseas holidays.

“In my view, the third schedule is artificially inflated and is out of kilter with the wife’s reasonable requirements,” said acting Judge of the high court, G Leslie.

Cape Times