Property settlements after divorce: here’s what you need to know

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  • your home
  • bank accounts
  • investments
  • superannuation
  • vehicles
  • other assets of value such as household goods and jewellery
  • mortgages
  • credit card and other debt
  • hire or rental agreements
  • incomes
  • businesses you run or share
  • other benefits or inheritances
  • non-financial contributions to the relationship
  • Litigation – where you and your ex-partner can’t agree and you go to court
  • Arbitration – a form of dispute resolution where both parties present their case to an independent third person (the arbitrator) and are bound by their decision
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution – mediation, negotiation and other forms of dispute resolution are where both parties come to an agreement on the division of property, rather than going to court
  • lawyers
  • court officers
  • valuers
  • accountants to investigate the total value of the asset pool, complicated structures and asset protection schemes 
  • Non-confrontational alternative dispute resolution (ADR) specialists such as mediators or arbitrators.
  • what you've got, what it’s worth and what you owe
  • your direct financial contributions to the relationship such as wage and salary earnings
  • your indirect financial contributions to the relationship such as gifts and inheritances from families
  • non-financial contributions to your relationship such as caring for children and homemaking 
  • future requirements, factoring in your age, health, financial resources, care of children and ability to earn
  • Legal advice
    It’s important to get quality, independent legal advice. You can ask trusted friends and family for referrals or you can search for a family lawyer in your state.
  • Mediation
    If you are unable to reach an agreement with your ex-partner, mediation is a good alternative to going to court. Consider using an accredited Family Dispute Resolution practitioner. Just remember, mediators don’t give advice – they’re there to help both parties resolve the dispute. You should still obtain your own independent legal advice.
  • Arbitration
    You could also try using an Arbitrator – an independent person who can make binding decisions on dividing your property.
  • Family Dispute Resolution
    And remember, if you plan to go to court, you need to genuinely attempt family dispute resolution, before filing an application.

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