Our lives and finances are becoming more and more complicated and financial settlements can relate to many aspects including:
The family home
Decisions will need to be made about who will keep the home or whether it will need to be sold.
Investment properties and shareholdings
Often there are tax consequences that need to be considered as part of any property settlement.
Trust, company and partnership structures
If you are retaining the structure, care needs to be taken to properly remove your partner from ongoing involvement in the entity. If you are stepping out of the entity, you need to make sure that you are protected against any future liabilities of the entity.
Property settlements may need to ensure the ongoing viability of a business to ensure ongoing income for the family.
Superannuation may be split between you and your partner. Or one of you may keep more of the superannuation and the other may keep more of other assets. Self Managed Superannuation Funds (SMSF) are becoming more common and need particular attention in family law settlements.
There are many factors to consider with property and financial settlements, including:
- The true value of the assets held by both you and your spouse must be determined;
- Contributions to the relationship must be assessed, including both financial and other significant contributions during the relationship;
- Future needs, including ongoing care of children or other people, earning capacity and other financial resources that may be available; and
- The division of assets must be equitable and decided upon as fairly as possible given the circumstances of your case.
If you are thinking about a separation, or have already separated, contact us for advice about your rights and entitlements before agreeing to a financial settlement.
We can help you in your discussions with your former partner and assist you to reach an agreement about a financial settlement. After meeting with us, you might wish to have direct discussions with your former partner to try and reach an agreement, or you might prefer us to negotiate with your former partner or their lawyer on your behalf. We will talk to you about the best way of achieving an agreement in your particular situation.
Once an agreement is reached, we can prepare the documents you need to finalise your property settlement.
We prefer to resolve property and financial matters by agreement wherever possible. This minimises your stress and financial costs. However, it is unfortunate that sometimes it is not possible to achieve a settlement. This might be because your former partner refuses to negotiate, takes an unreasonable position or threatens to destroy or dispose of assets. If any of these situations arise, Family Court proceedings may be necessary. We have the skills and experience to represent you in the Family Court and to act decisively and assertively on your behalf.