What are the advantages of a property settlement?
Reaching an agreement with the other party offers many advantages, such as:
- Making your own decisions
- Greatly reducing the financial and emotional costs of legal proceedings
- Improving communication with the other partner and increasing the ability to resolve disputes in the future
- Ability to move forward and make a new life for yourself
For more information, please refer to the Family Court’s ‘Property and money after separation’ section.
Choosing negotiation over Court proceedings
At GMH Legal we see court actions as a measure of last resort, which should only be engaged in cases where other, more cost-effective, avenues for reaching a voluntary agreement have been exhausted.
We actively promote and encourage the use of collaborative law techniques, such as facilitated negotiation and mediation, to help former spouses and partners reach an equitable property settlement.
This results in both partners having more control over the distribution of their assets and liabilities, and moreover, results in the financial pie being increased for both partners, as unnecessary costs are not incurred by paying lawyers fees and engaging the court system.
Parties should always make a genuine effort to reach a property settlement. Before filing an Application for financial orders in Court, parties will be required to follow pre-action procedures, which include attending dispute resolution.
For more information, please refer to the Family Court’s ‘If you don’t agree about property and money’ section.
How does a Court decide financial disputes?
If the parties cannot reach a property settlement, they need to apply to a Court for financial orders. There is no official formula used to divide property, instead the decision is made after all the evidence is heard and the judicial officer decides what is just and equitable based on the unique facts of your case.
The Family Law Act sets out the general principles the Court considers when deciding financial disputes after the breakdown of a marriage (section 79(4) and 75(2) or a de facto relationship (section 90SM(4) and 90SF(3)).
The general principles are based on:
- Clarifying each parties’ assets, debts, and their value
- Analysing the direct financial contributions of each party to the relationship such as wage and salary earnings
- Looking at indirect financial contributions by each party such as gift and inheritance from families
- Identifying the non-financial contributions to the relationship such as caring for the children and homemaking
- Future requirements: age, health, financial resources, care of children and ability to learn.
In the event negotiation fails, at GMH Legal our expert family lawyers will forcefully seek to secure your financial interests in the Family Court or Federal Magistrates Court. They have an abundance of litigation experience and know the inner workings of these courts back to front. No matter what forum you end up using to secure your financial security, we will ensure that you receive the best possible result in your given circumstances.
Call the experienced team at GMH Legal to assist you in your matter.
A free consultation with GMH Legal is an opportunity to gain deep insights into your legal situation and all of your options.
Why Choose GMH Legal?
- Over 60 years of combined legal experience
- Outstanding track record with a winning approach
- First appointment is always free
- Meet our team now.