If you are wondering what you may be entitled to in a divorce settlement in Australia, you are not alone. Unfortunately, however, the question does not have a straightforward answer applicable in every scenario. Using a divorce entitlements calculator, you can get a rough idea of what you may be entitled to. However, you should be aware that any estimates shown on such tools do not consider the whole story – and so the figures you obtain on these will not always reflect reality.
The following article will discuss what you may be entitled to in divorce in Australia and the various methods to obtain a rough estimate of such entitlements, namely divorce entitlements calculators.
How The Court Will Determine What I am Entitled To In A Divorce in Australia
In every divorce property settlement, there are usually four steps involved, which are gone through in sequence:
Step One– Identifying and valuing all of the property and assets of the parties involved.
Step Two – Assessing the non-financial and financial contributions of each party to the divorce.
Step Three – Identifying all the needs of both parties
Step Four –Ensuring that the division is ‘just and equitable in the eyes of the law and the Court. This means that it is fair, in consideration of all the circumstances highlighted above.
A divorce entitlements calculator can give you a reasonable estimate of what you may and may not be entitled to in a divorce settlement. However, a divorce entitlements calculator can never consider how much weight the Court will attribute to a particular contribution or the needs of both parties. Accordingly, there is no genuinely accurate tool to measure just how much you may be entitled to in divorce in Australia. Steps two and three are particularly pivotal in estimating what you may be entitled to in a divorce settlement.
Step Two – Assessing The Contributions Of Each Party
In this step, both the financial and non-financial contributions of each party to the marriage and home will be assessed
Types of Financial Contributions Include:
- Paying the mortgage and any bills
- Any pre-existing property or assets you brought into the marriage
It is important to note that the ownership of any pre-existing assets you had before entering the marriage will be eroded over time the longer you and your partner have been together. So the best way to think of this is that the longer a couple is together, the more your property and assets become mutual.
Types of Non-Financial Contributions Include:
- Stopping work or study to look after the children and home while your former partner works
- Taking care of the house and children
- Cooking, gardening and cleaning
- Renovations you have performed on the property which has increased the value of the home
- Maintenance work you have done to the property which has resulted in financial savings
It is important to note that a divorce entitlements calculator cannot take into account non-financial contributions and so
Step 3 – Identifying the needs of each party.
The other step which is especially relevant when calculating divorce entitlements involves identifying the needs of each party. In this step, the Court will consider both the present and future needs of each party. Concerning these, the most common requirements that significantly impact the division of property and assets are the health status, age, and the ability of a party to earn income and whether there are children in their care.
Additional factors are also considered, such as each parties access to family or any inheritances in the future. The Court will commonly compare the needs of each individual and add or detract percentages of the property and asset pool based to balance the division.
Importance of Seeking Legal Advice
When discussing your entitlements in a divorce property settlement, it is essential to note that a divorce entitlements calculator will never give you a truly accurate account of what you may or may not be entitled to. It would be best to contact an experienced family lawyer for the most proper estimate and discuss your particular circumstances.
Here at JB Solicitors, we’ll make the process as pain-free as possible. We have fixed-fee pricing for family law, giving you a clear sense of the costs from the start, and we will be sure to help you out every step of the way. With years of experience under our belt, we pride ourselves on making each client’s family law experience as positive as possible.
Contact JB Solicitors today to speak with one of our friendly and experienced family lawyers.
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