4 Key Points To Note About Property Settlements
Firstly, what is a property settlement?
Put simply, the division of assets when a relationship breaks down, enabling both parties to sever financial and material ties with one another so they can better move on with their lives, requires a property settlement. A property settlement will also include the distribution of liabilities, such as unpaid loans and credit card debt.
Some confuse a property settlement with who gets the house, but there’s more to it than that.
Let’s take a look at a few key points to keep in mind during the property settlement process.
#1 – Understand the Process
The very best way to understand the process of a property settlement and what your rights are is to seek legal advice as early as you can. Most married or de facto couples are not experts in the law, so the logical first step is to talk to a lawyer who specialises in family law. You’ll feel a lot more confident about the procedure once you gain more insight.
#2 – Don’t Wait for the Divorce To Be Finalised
It’s prudent to negotiate a property settlement as soon as possible after a relationship breaks down. You don’t need to wait for a divorce to be finalised before working out the division of assets and liabilities. The sooner a settlement is negotiated and agreed upon, the better and likely fairer it will be. If you increase your assets after the split and haven’t yet finalised a settlement, then those new assets can be made claim to in the property settlement, even though they were acquired after the relationship ended.
#3 – Try and Be Reasonable Throughout the Process
Often tensions are running high during a divorce or relationship break down, so thinking clearly and fairly is not always the easiest thing to do. However, it’s in your best interests to try and keep those emotions in check when working out a property settlement. Separation is stressful enough without unnecessary bickering over who gets what. It’s not always easy in these circumstances, but the fairer you are, the more likelihood of a civil and fairer split of the assets and liabilities.
#4 – Formalise the Property Settlement
Once a settlement has been negotiated and agreed upon by both parties, it should be legally recorded in one of two ways:
- Consent Order
- Binding Financial Agreement
A Consent Order is scrutinised by a court registrar to ascertain that it is equitable, whereas a Binding Financial Agreement is not.
When you discuss the process with your legal representative, together you’ll be able to determine which way is best for your circumstances.
Need Help and Legal Advice? Talk To An Expert
James Noble Law in Brisbane is your local family law team of specialists when it comes to negotiating property settlements. Our many years of experience means we fully understand the processes and can assist in obtaining a fair and just result for you. Give us a call and make an appointment today to discuss your rights under the law and your best options.