When your marriage or de facto relationship ends, there are often huge emotions involved, but it is important to look to the practical side of things as soon as possible. The financial ties between you and your partner need to be sorted, which is exactly what occurs in a de facto or divorce property settlement.
Your ‘property’ can refer to a number of things, including:
The Family Law Act 1975 sets out the process and law, which regulates property settlement. It’s important to note that every couple and every experience is entirely different and treated on a case-by-case basis. You will need to seek advice for your individual experience, rather than relying on what someone else went through.
If you are (or have been) married:
Your property settlement can happen at any time before a divorce, or within 12 months after your divorce.
If you have been in a de facto relationship:
The property settlement must take place within two years of separation.
If you wait too long, it is still possible to ask the court for extra time to process it, however once again this is worked out on a case-by-case basis.
The Family Law Act 1975 and the courts have established a process to work out your entitlements.
All your joint property is considered in the process, which includes all assets and liabilities. Courts will then look at your initial contributions at the start and during the relationship and take into account post-separation factors. As every couple is different, everyone’s assets are different and each case is different, this process varies from person to person to determine what you are entitled to.
While in an ideal world, you can walk your separate ways and never have to see each other again, a property settlement after separation is an important part of ending your financial ties with your partner.
If a property settlement does not occur, either you or your partner can make a claim down the track, which looks at your division of property at the date of proceedings (not from the date of separation), which can be detrimental in some cases.
Court isn’t the only way to settle your property. If you and your partner are able to come to a property settlement agreement yourselves, you can save a lot of time and hassle in the process. It is just important to ensure this agreement is both binding and enforceable, so you don’t end up in the scenario mentioned above.
There are two ways to do this:
If you find you’re unable to reach a property settlement agreement with your partner, it is best to consult a family lawyer. At Nadeem Lawyers, we walk you through your different options and work on the best solution for your individual situation. You may be able to look into mediation before taking it to court to save yourself time and money.
If you require any assistance Call Nadeem Lawyers at 02 9635 7903
DISCLAIMER: The information provided here is only for general understanding and does not constitute legal advice.
Nadeem Lawyers is a law practice with a focus on Immigration, Business & Property Conveyancing, Family Law, and Wills & Estate. We are conveniently located in the Parramatta CBD. We pride ourselves on our personable approach and focus on establishing long-term relationships with our clients. Our team is committed to achieving meaningful results for our clients in a cost-effective manner. We feel a great sense of achievement when we see our clients emerging happier at the conclusion of their matters.