Ex-magic circle lawyer loses legal battle to force wealthy parents to pay him maintenance for life

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By Aishah Hussain on

Faiz Siddiqui, 41, claimed he was entirely dependent on them due to health issues

A former magic circle lawyer has lost his court bid to force his wealthy parents to pay him maintenance for life.

Oxford University graduate Faiz Siddiqui, 41, claimed he was entirely dependent on his elderly parents and was entitled to their financial support as a “vulnerable” adult child of theirs with health issues.

For 20 years they had put up their son, who trained as a solicitor at Clifford Chance and went on to practise at other big name outfits but is now said to be unemployed, in a £1 million flat they own near London’s Hyde Park. They also paid his bills and gave him £400 spending money a week.

But following a family row, Siddiqui’s parents wanted to reduce their level of support, triggering a legal challenge by their son.

It was rejected by family court judge Sir James Munby last year and brought as a test case to the Court of Appeal in March 2021.

The case, which could’ve recast the laws on parental responsibilities to their adult children, was thrown out by the Court of Appeal on Tuesday.

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Justin Warshaw QC of 1 Hare Court, who represented Siddiqui’s parents, said: “These long-suffering parents have reached their own view of what is suitable provision for their difficult, demanding and pertinacious 41-year-old son.”

He added: “His skeleton argument is littered with emotive references to ‘child’ and ‘children’. To be clear, this is a man in his 40s, seeking financial support from his elderly parents — 69 and 71 years old, respectively.”

“It goes without saying that the parents are devastated that they are being put through this ordeal by their son and that they are being put to such enormous expense, particularly when set against their historic and ongoing generosity towards him,” Warsaw said.

Backing the argument, the judges ruled that “whatever the moral position might be, parents should be under no legal duty to support their adult children, however grave their need”.

Siddiqui’s latest court defeat comes nearly five years after he tried to sue his former university when he failed to secure a first class degree. His £1 million compensation claim was struck out by the High Court in 2018.

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