A good result for couples who are separating is to meet on an agreement by consent about the allotment of assets of the relationship. Though an agreement with former spouse is reached, the Family Law Rules defining the division of property are indeed complicated, and it’s better to ask for legal advice on family law regarding your entitlements prior to your acceptance of the settlement offer.

You may file an application for property settlement orders to the Federal Circuit Court or to the Family Court. According to the Family Law Act of 1975, there is a 12-month restriction after your divorce to apply for property settlement.  Remember, the time due for de facto relationship to start proceedings in order to acquire your entitlements for property settlements is 2 years from the end of your relationship.

For added reference and knowledge on property settlements Mandurah, you can search the web and look for the appropriate sections of Family Law Act of 1975 about financial property settlements cases for married couples.

In Western Australia, take note, the Family Law Act of 1975 doesn’t involve de facto relationships. However, the method in determining property settlement is basically the same. The legislation which is applicable is the Family Court Act of 1997.

Four-step process of property settlement

In order to determine an equitable and fair family law – property settlement, there is a four-step process that should be applied to both parties’ circumstances.

The process involves the following:
•    Identifying the net assets of both parties;
•    Assessing both parties’ contributions. This pertains to their contribution to the procurement, conservation or development to the asset pool. And this involves non-financial contributions as homemaker and parent.
•    Assessing future needs. Both parties’ future needs are assessed and various things are taken into account such as age, earning capacity, health, whether the party has the support and care of the children, financial situation if there’s any new relationship.
When applicable, both parties’ contribution can be adjusted after considering those factors.
•    Considering practical effect. The last step in the application of property settlement process is considering the practical effect of the settlements being proposed, and achieving an outcome which is equitable and fair in all circumstances.
After a property settlement agreement has been decided, the agreement can be formalised in two ways:

•    Filling Form 11 Consent orders through the Federal Circuit Court or Family Court; or
•    Having a binding financial agreement

Seek advice from your family law attorney on which option is the best and appropriate for your situation.

In any agreed property settlement, both parties are obliged to make frank and full disclosure of their financial situation. If relevant matters are not disclosed, there will be serious consequences.

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