Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Notes on Property Settlements

[01] The term property in the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) is defined very broadly. In includes assets owned individually, jointly or by a family company/trust. It also includes property once owned but recently disposed of.

[02] From 1 March 2009, de facto partners can use the Family Law Act to resolve their property disputes.

[03] Section 80 FLA sets out possible orders the Court can make on property and spousal maintenance. The Court can only make orders within the list.

[04] Property disputes involving married parties can be settled under the FLA at anytime before divorce. They can also be settled at anytime upto 12 months after a final divorce. That means the application must be filed within 12 months of the divorce.

[05] A formerly married person who failed to lodge his or her application within the 12 month post-divorce period will have to obtain permission from the Court before lodging the claim. They will have to show good reasons for not lodging earlier.

[06] De facto (including same-sex) partners must lodge their property and/or spousal maintenance application within two (2) years of the relationship ending.

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