After the breakdown of a marriage or de facto relationship, the division of property is important to the financial future of both parties.
It is thereof important to obtain legal advice as to your family law rights, entitlements and obligations. There are time limitations to making an application to the Family Court for property orders and you should seek legal advice to ensure you comply before it is too late.
You can reach an agreement out of court. The agreement can be filed in the Family Court by using the process known as an Application for Consent Orders. You do not need to obtain independent legal advice to file this application but we recommend that you do.
Another option is to formalise your agreement by way of a Binding Financial Agreement (“BFA”). Both your partner and you will need to obtain independent legal advice from a family lawyer for the BFA to be binding. A BFA is not filed at Court.
One advantage of formalising your agreement by way of either court orders or a BFA is that stamp duty relief may apply on the transfer of real estate from one partner to another.
When your former partner and you are unable to reach your own agreement on the division of your joint net assets, it may be necessary for you to commence defended Family Court proceedings so that the court can make property orders.
However, before starting court proceedings you must, save for some exceptions, comply with “pre-action” procedures namely attend mediation. If mediation is unsuccessful, then write to the other party setting out your claim. Always ensure you comply with your duty to provide disclosure.
Whether you require initial once-off legal advice regarding the division of your assets, advice on the preparation of either an Application for Consent Orders or BFA, representation during the negotiation phase or court representation in defended court proceedings, our family law lawyers have the experience you need.