My Legal Blog

Howdy! I'm Dan Smith and I live with my wonderful family in Perth. This is my legal blog which aims to look at every part of the legal system. I should point out that i'm not a lawyer myself. However, my good friend Stan has been representing people in court for many years. I find Stan's work fascinating and I love asking him questions. I have even done a bit of my own research into the legal system. I decided to pull everything together here so I could organise my thoughts while also providing useful info for others. Thanks for checking out my blog!

A Guide on Property Settlement After Divorce

Law Blog

Property settlement is the process through which divorcing or separating couples divide marital property. Below is a comprehensive guide on the property settlement process and the various considerations divorcing couples should make during property settlement. 

Work With a Skilled Property Settlement Lawyer

An experienced lawyer will guide you through the property settlement process. The lawyer will evaluate your present situation and provide tips on how to approach the process. For instance, if you split the family business, what role should you take? How will you access joint funds? What kind of expenses should you avoid? 

How to Divide Marital Property

There are two ways to divide marital property;

Out-of-Court Process

A couple can decide to share property through a negotiation or mediation process. It is a cheaper and more convenient as compared to the lengthy court process. The divorcing couple can either agree on their own or through their lawyers. 

The couple will decide the property under dispute and its current value. They will also have to share liabilities, such as debt or any taxes owed to the government. Special circumstances such as unemployment, disability or illness, and the welfare of the kids will significantly impact how the couple will divide their property. 

Court Process

Couples who cannot divide property through negotiation or mediation may opt to go to court. The judge will make a ruling based on the financial and non-financial contributions made by each party. Further, he or she will examine future needs, such as children's education and the health needs of either party. 

The Settlement Contract

The settlement agreement is a document detailing how a divorcing couple will divide marital property. Preferably, each spouse should receive independent legal advice before signing the contract. The family court can nullify the agreement if a party was coerced into signing, if there is evidence of fraud or if there are errors such as contradicting statements.

Selling Matrimonial Property

Various circumstances may force a divorcing couple to sell some of their property before initiating property settlement proceedings. This happens due to unique financial conditions, such as inability to make mortgage repayments. The parties must observe a high degree of transparency. Property under sole ownership acquired in the course of the marriage is still regarded as marital property. As such, parties should not attempt to sell such property without the consent of their former spouse. Besides, they should not provide false documents as a way to hide assets. Such behaviour could lead to severe penalties in court.

Property settlement can be a tedious process. As such, work with a lawyer, like those at Stokes Legal. Maintaining a good relationship with your ex can significantly ease negotiation and property sales.


13 January 2020