Divorce And Property Settlement: Facts Every Couple Should Know When Getting Divorce
When a couple is getting separated or getting divorced, there are many issues that a couple has to face than ‘just stop being in each other’s life anymore. They have to settle their properties, finances, divide their money contribution and other aspects of living together. Although there are well-established laws to help with this process, every divorce settlement is different, hence there is no one straight answer to the common questions pertaining to property settlement. All assets owned by both parties are included in the settlement including real estate, business interests, shares, vehicle superannuation as well as the artwork.
This can include property acquired prior to marriage as well. It is also necessary to settle mortgages or personal loan repayments after separation. This is a legal matter however, the divorce process and settlement of property are two different legal processes. It is quite common for couples to be unfamiliar with the law pertaining to these matters. This article provides essential information regarding this and how family lawyers can provide expert advice.
Important facts about property settlement
- A divorce is a legal termination of a marriage allowing each person to remarry while a property settlement is a formal division of property after the separation of a couple.
- The first step is to agree on the collective value of the assets and debts. It also includes checking how each person has contributed to the relationship financially and non-financially. Finally, it takes into consideration the factor that might be affecting both in the future.
- This is only legally binding once by the order of a family law court or if it is settled by each party with the help of a lawyer.
- Settling the property in this way is beneficial since this way any property that has been acquired post-separation is safe from scrutiny.
- Those in a de facto relationship can also apply for a property settlement. However, in order to qualify as a de facto relationship, it is necessary that the couple have been living together for 2 years.
- One of the major confusion couples tend to have during separation is who is responsible for the mortgage. For a property that is in the name of both parties, they both are equally responsible for the repayment
- The property settlement can be postponed for only two years after the formal separation for a de facto relationship and only 12 months for a married couple.
- It is a legal requirement for each party to disclose all details about their property; this includes information superannuation as well.
- Not all married couples will have their assets divided 50/50; there are many factors that affect the percentage of settlement like the net value of the asset pool, length of the relationship, financial position of each party, their age, and future earning capacity.
- It is important to finalize the property settlement after separation. The downfall of leaving it till later is that the court will consider the property ownership at the time of the proceedings rather than the date of separation
- Several couples tend to believe that being separated means living separately. However, living under one roof is still possible after being separated. In fact, it is also legal to be living under one roof and still be separated.
- In the case where a property is not joint property, the court can include the property in the settlement if common funds have been used to fund the purchase.
Settlement of property can be done by the couple themselves if they are able to come to an agreement with minimal dispute. It is highly likely that each party has something dear to them that they do not want to include in the settlement, for example, a diamond necklace gifted by a grandmother. It often happens that there would be a disagreement on which items can be excluded. Hence, in most cases, it is best to seek the help of family lawyers services to help protect your best interests. They will work around the clock to find you the best arrangement.