Property Settlement

Property Settlement

There are essentially four main things that the law considers how assets should be divided after separation.

Property Settlement

 With so many aspects to consider, it’s beneficial to engage competent property settlement lawyers to provide guidance. For separating couples that find it stressful to communicate with each other about financial issues, we can help by conducting negotiations on their behalf for a fair settlement.

Reaching an agreement on a settlement is cost effective and efficient, however in the event that an agreement is not possible, our lawyers can provide strong and expert representation at Court.

“Property settlement” is a term to describe who gets what after the end of the relationship or marriage.

 Following separation couples need to sort out how to divide their asset pool. This is called a ‘property settlement’. It is irrelevant as to whose name a particular property or other asset is registered.

Asset Pool

The first thing is to determine the what is to be included in the asset pool. The asset pool comprises all property of the relationship Sometimes this is easy – especially when the parties agree on the assets and their values. Frequently, this is not the case and sometimes assets are not properly disclosed. It is a legal requirement that the parties disclose all assets so that the value of the asset pool can be accurately determined.

This asset pool can will include some or all of the following:

  • Real estate
  • Bank Account Balances
  • Motor Vehicles
  • Maintenance
  • Investments
  • Mortgages
  • Shares
  • Business Interests
  • Household contents
  • Superannuation
  • Liabilities (Mortgages, Credit Cards etc)
  • Family Trust Assets

Contributions

The contributions of each person during the relationship are very important. Some contributions will be financial. Some will be non-financial. Assets brought to the relationship are sometimes relevant also.

“Future Factors”

A Court is required to consider the factors under section 75(2) of the Family Law Act (otherwise known as “future factors”) in determining how the asset pool should be apportioned.

Some of the “future factors” include –

  • The age and state of health of each party
  • The physical and mental capacity of each party to obtain employment
  • Whether either party has the care of a child under the age of 18 years
  • Any child support that has been paid by a party
  • Any child support that a party may be liable to pay
  • The necessary commitments of each party that enable that party to support themselves, a child or other person that the party has a duty to maintain

 

What us Just And Equitable?

A property settlement should be, on balance, just and equitable to both parties. That is, in fundamental terms, each party should walk away with a fair outcome. The challenge is usually getting to what actually is just and equitable in the particular circumstances.

Next Steps

In the event of a separation or divorce, it is critical that you obtain legal advice from an experienced property settlement lawyer before making any financial decisions with your partner.

To avoid court, you need to agree as to how you intend to divide your asset pool, then you can enter into Consent Orders or a Financial Agreement to make the agreement legally binding. This is an excellent way of concluding the matter inexpensively, but we recognise that not all cases can be resolved this easily.

Whatever your circumstances, we can help. While we will always try to settle matters as early as possible, we are experienced in running matters to trial where necessary. We also don’t mind the “tough” cases.

Our goal is to seek exceptional outcomes for our clients in what are obviously difficult times.

We can help. Call us now on 1300 907 335 or otherwise please complete the contact form on this page for a confidential discussion.

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