The Family Law Act 1975 covers married couples, de facto spouses and same sex couples following separation and divorce. It is advisable that the parties attempt to reach an agreement outside of Court, before filing an application for property orders. There are two ways that your agreement can be formalised:
• Binding Financial Agreements
• Consent Orders
If no agreement can be reached then an application for property orders can be filed in with the Family Court.
The Family Court is obliged to make orders which are “just and equitable”. It is necessary to assess the net asset pool of the marriage which include:
- The family home
- Investment properties
- Motor vehicles
- Savings, bank accounts
- Personal possessions such as jewellery.
- Superannuation, businesses and trust funds will also be taken into account
The net asset pool includes anything acquired before or during the marriage. All of the assets of the parties, whether in joint names or not, are taken into account. Once the assets have been determined and the value of each asset has been established it is then necessary to determine the financial contributions and nonfinancial contributions to the acquisition of the assets, or the maintenance of the assets by the parties. Contributions can be either direct contributions or indirect contributions towards the “acquisition, conservation or maintenance” of the asset.
It is then necessary to consider the future needs of both parties including:
- Ability to work
- Future living conditions
- Care of the Children
- Age of the Children
- Financial recourses such as a family trust fund or inheritance.
It may be necessary to obtain valuations of the assets and for experts to provide reports including taxation, stamp duty and appreciation or depreciation of the assets.
Time Limits for Property settlement Applications:
1. 12 months of divorce becoming final
2. 2 years of separation in de facto relationships including same sex
At Court Legal we work with you to arrive at the best possible agreement for you. If necessary, and after negotiations have failed, we will assist you with your family court proceedings to help you achieve the best possible outcome. Here at Court Legal we take the time to listen.
Call 1300 885 289 to Make a First Free Consultation with Rossana at a Time and Location Convenient to You.