Where parties separate, they are generally entitled to divide their property. Some agreements can be reached in a relatively straight forward manner, other agreements may take time and can be complex.
Going through the property settlement process can be quite emotional and confusing. We have been helping clients with family law matters, in particular with respect to property division, divorce and separation since 1981.
We have an experienced team of family law practitioners who have managed countless complex and straightforward property division matters.
We strongly advise clients to seek legal advice from the outset of their separation and to seek guidance with respect to their negotiations for the best possible outcome.
Property Division Resolution
Generally, an agreement concerning property division is reached in the following manner:-
1. Informal Property Division Arrangements
Some parties are able to reach an agreement on an informal basis. In these circumstances, parties will implement their agreement without the need for Court Orders or any formality. The difficulty with these arrangements is that they are unenforceable, and claims can later be made.
2. Family Dispute Resolution (FDR)
The parties, generally with the assistance of solicitors, can come to an agreement about property division and enlist the assistance of an FDR practitioner or mediator.
These people are not able to provide legal advice – they can only help with mediation. As such, we recommend that you engage a lawyer before attending FDR or mediation so that you fully understand what you might be entitled to and therefore the best outcome for you.
3. Negotiated Settlements
People are not always able to reach an agreement through FDR or informally. As such, you are entitled to engage a lawyer to assist you in this task. This is particularly helpful where parties are then not required to negotiate directly with each other and will have the benefit of legal advice to assist them work out their entitlements and through the negotiation process. If agreement cannot then be struck, it may be necessary to go to Court.
4. The Court Process
If it is simply not possible to negotiate a settlement/division of property, the parties may have to issue an Application in the Federal Circuit Court of Australia or the Family Court of Australia to have their matter determined by the Court.
This may be unavoidable, but necessary. Whilst we do all that we can to avoid having to issue proceedings, the need to go to Court may be taken out of your hands. We are acutely aware that going to Court can be costly and the results not guaranteed.
Fortunately, the Court process usually provides the parties with an opportunity to resolve their matters through Court ordered conferences/mediations.
We are experienced in all these property matters. To arrange for a confidential discussion about your property division matter, please contact us today.
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Our team of experienced family lawyers can help with all matters relating to the breakdown of a de facto relationship including separation, parenting/children’s issues, property division, superannuation splitting, spousal maintenance, property preservation orders and other orders, please contact us today.
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Our Family Law team