Property settlement – not an accounting exercise
In a recent case in the Federal Circuit Court, the Judge was critical of the husband who was trying to claim that certain contributions during the relationship should be precisely accounted for in the final property settlement.
The court explained that, in accordance with the law, the proper approach was a more holistic approach, which included weighing up the contributions over the course of the relationship and cautioning against overanalysing the parties’ contributions.
As part of this weighing up process, the court must consider the length of the relationship, the nature of contributions, the timing and quantity of contributions and how those contributions have affected the asset pool available for distribution.
A common example of this “accounting” exercise is where one party has made a financial contribution, for example, they have received an inheritance during the course of the relationship. This contribution will be weighed against the other financial and non-financial contributions in the context of the relationship. Usually, you will not be entitled to receive that inheritance amount, ‘dollar for dollar’, in any final property settlement.
Trying to consider these contributions can become very complicated as they are specific to your circumstances, so you should obtain legal advice regarding your situation. Contact our office to arrange a fixed-fee initial consultation today on (07) 3221 4300.