Chances of Natalia Potanina to receive half of the ex-husbandís capital increased

27 November 2014

Philipp Ryabchenko, the lawyer of Vladimir Potanin’s ex-wife, managed to defend the position of his client in the fundamental dispute on the case of the actual family disruption. Dismissal of the decision of the district court that it happened in 2007 makes more grounded Natalia Potanina’s claims for half of the capital of one of the richest men in Russia.

On February 25, 2014 in the decision of the judge of justice judicial district No.418 of Presnensky District of Moscow on the Potanin’s divorce, at the insistence of the ex-husband it was mentioned that the actual family relationships between them had stopped as early as in 2007. However, Natalia Potanina did not agree with this statement and filed a complaint with the court of cassation of the Moscow City Court demanding to exclude from the judgment that conclusion. According to Philipp Ryabchenko, the lawyer of the billionaire’s ex-wife, determining of the date of the accrual termination of family relationships does not fall at all within the competence of courts of justice in the case of divorce. The argument of the defence was heard by the court of the higher instance, and as a result the Presidium of the Moscow City Court ruled to remove references to that date from the decision on divorce.

This decision seems fundamental in view of the fact that it can influence the fate of USD 14.3 billion that belong to the owner of «Norilsk Nickel», leading ultimately to the division of the capital between the former spouses in half. The fact is that it was in 2007 when Vladimir Potanin and Mikhail Prokhorov, who had been business partners before, divided the business, and starting from this moment, each of them began to dispose of their capitals independently on their own. And if Potanin’s family disruption preceded that date, then the former wife might have had difficulties to prove the rights for the property arisen after 2007. But if the family disrupted after 2007 — in any case, half of the businessman’s capital according to the law should go at the disposal of his ex-wife. Natalia Potanina said about this in court, noting that she is ready for talks with her ex-husband, but he is not willing to negotiate.

According to Philipp Ryabchenko if Vladimir Potanin’s party again raises the issue of the family disruption date, Natalia Potanina’s defence is ready to prove that the family disrupted only in 2013. Moreover, according to the lawyer, not only the Russian property of the magnate should be divided, but also foreign assets, and Vladimir Potanin’s defenders, of course, disagree with this.