Property Settlement Disputes

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Property Settlement Disputes


When a relationship ends, among the many things that you need to consider is how to divide any property that you may own with your ex-partner. Property can be both financial assets (like your family home, business or shares) as well as any debts that you may owe. Whether you’re married or in a de facto relationship, the family law may apply to your relationship. 


Property settlement agreement


Not all property settlement disputes need to be resolved in Court. In many cases, both parties are able to reach an agreement with the assistance of their lawyers. If you and your ex-partner mutually decide on your settlement, you can formalise that agreement by applying for consent orders in Court. This makes the agreement legally binding and enforceable. 


Dispute resolution in Court


If you and your ex-partner are unable to reach an agreement, you will need to file an application for property settlement in the appropriate Court. This could be the Family Court of Australia, the Federal Circuit Court of Australia, or a local Court depending on the complexity of your case and the value of the property involved. 


When you make your application, you will need to identify and value all your assets, liabilities, and financial resources. The Court will then assess all the direct and indirect and financial and non-financial contributions made by you and your ex-partner and assess your future needs. This will be based on factors such as your age, health, standard of living, if you have any children and your financial circumstances. The Court will then make an order proposing a division of your property.


Remember that there is a time limit within which you must apply for your property settlement. If you were married, you must apply for settlement within 12 months of finalising your divorce. If you were in a de facto relationship, an application must be made within two years of the breakdown of your relationship. If you do not apply within these time frames, you will need special permission from the Court, which is not always granted. 



How can we help you


At Elamine Lawyers, we understand that property disputes can be a sensitive matter. Our team of experienced Family Lawyers are here to help you arrive at a settlement that is in your best interests. Our services include:

  • Advising you on your rights and obligations when it comes to protecting your property;

  • Identifying which property (assets and debts) need to be included in the settlement;

  • Formalising an agreement if you and your ex-partner decide how to divide the property without court involvement; 

  • Applying for consent orders in the Family Court;

  • Negotiating on your behalf if you and your ex-partner cannot reach a mutually acceptable settlement; and 

  • Representing you in Court proceedings concerning the division of your property.


 Check out the Property Settlement page on the Family Court Property Settlement Page