When relationships break down, the assets and property of a couple need to be sorted out. In most cases, partners find mutual ground in an amicable manner, but there are times when professional assistance is required to reach a satisfactory agreement. Taylor & Scott Family Law specialists will help you negotiate the right settlement.
What is considered property?
Property includes all real estate and other assets of value a person owns or has a legal or equitable interest. Unlike real estate, personal property is moveable, although in marriages and de facto relationships personal property becomes a shared asset between partners, just as real estate does. In other words, property settlements are a big deal for everyone concerned and emotions will run high at times.
Your property includes real estate holdings, vehicles, boats, furniture, bank accounts, collectibles and more, both in Australia and overseas.
Australian family law legislation aims for fair outcomes, so you will need to disclose accurate financial and ownership records prior to mediation or adjudication. Non-disclosure can lead to serious consequences, including the other party being awarded a greater percentage in a property settlement and, if the non-disclosure is discovered later on, then the court can reopen the matter and impose penalties at that point including the award of significant legal costs.
How is property divided?
There are a several steps required when dividing property between married or de facto partners. Some of the major considerations include:
- Valuing the assets (property) of each party if they cannot agree
- Assessing contributions made by each party
- Considering arrangements for children or other dependents
- Determining the income of each party
- Determining whether the proposal is just and equitable
How long after divorce can you do property settlement?
Even people who aren’t divorced can commence finalising the division of assets and liabilities so long as they are at least separated, as with de facto couples. In many circumstances, parties reach an agreement about the division of property formalised by filing an Application for Consent Orders with the Family Court of Australia. The consent orders are binding and enforceable as part of the Family Law Act.
Advantages of consent orders include stamp duty exemptions for property and motor vehicle transfers, plus capital gains tax roll over relief for other shared investments. If your property settlement isn’t going smoothly and you require legal support, contact Taylor & Scott to guide you during negotiations and/or court proceedings.
Are there time limits to property settlements?
If you are divorced there are strict time limits in place, with property settlement proceedings needing to be commenced within one year of the divorce order taking effect.
De facto property settlement proceedings must be commenced within two years after final separation. With so much going on, it can be difficult to know exactly what move to make next for best possible property settlement outcomes. This is where Taylor & Scott Family Law professionals can shine a light on your settlement potential. We assist in ways that include:
- Understanding the law related to your individual circumstances
- Guiding you through the settlement process steps
- Undertaking an objective analysis of the expected split of assets (property)
- Using your information to deliver optimum settlement outcomes
- Analyse your liabilities and the effect they may have on settlement
- Recommend the next steps to take in achieving a just and equitable outcome
Taylor & Scott Lawyers have been assisting clients find solutions to their legal problems for over 120 years.
If your situation can’t be resolved through negotiation and mediation, we will prepare your case for court and vigorously pursue your rights.
At Taylor & Scott, ‘We Care For You’.