This involved a marriage of 23 years. The husband is 63 years old, and the wife is 55 years old. They have 2 children, aged 23 and 20. The husband was an inveterate gambler who had, throughout the course of the marriage, incurred not just winnings but losses which were substantial.

The wife is appealing for the matrimonial assets to be distributed in the ratio of 80:20 in her favour. In the matrimonial assets, a $1.25m lottery win was received during the marriage. The lottery winnings were deposited in their joint account and used to repay the mortgage loans for the matrimonial home.



Lottery winnings constitute a “matrimonial asset” within the definition of Section 112(10) of the Woman Charter. Therefore, they form part of the pool of matrimonial assets to be divided between the parties under Section 112(1).

In this case, the court found that various payments towards the matrimonial home paid out of their joint account were derived from the lottery winnings.

As such, the court deemed that the lottery winnings should be attributed to each party equally, and the calculation of parties’ direct contributions towards the matrimonial home will change.

Learning Point

The most important point of determining if the lottery winnings constitute matrimonial assets is not about who purchased the ticket, but the intention of the ticket purchased.

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