A Federal Circuit Court financial statement involves property settlement proceedings in Australia. Similarly, a spouse may require a divorce financial statement if they respond to a financial case filed by their ex-partner. This is a form that lists all assets and liabilities of divorced couples.
A Federal Circuit Court financial statement is a sworn document taking the form of an affidavit. Essentially, the Federal Circuit Court And Family Court rules require accurate completion. Non-disclosure of significant details may affect an applicant’s credibility as a witness in proceedings.
Over time, an applicant’s financial circumstances can change significantly. Hence, the opposing party and the court will require a Federal Circuit Court financial statement for their perusal. This article will provide details about the Federal Circuit Court financial statement.
What Is A Financial Statement?
The Federal Circuit Court provides a Form 13 financial statement. This is a key document that is designed to include significant financial information about each party’s financial case. The Family Law Act 1975 sets out property division after a marriage breakdown.
The Commonwealth Statutory Family Law Rules set out both parties’ property division after a relationship breakdown.
One of these rules is the Duty Of Disclosure. This states that an applicant must make full and frank disclosure of financial circumstances to their ex-partner and the court. Certainly, an applicant can make necessary amendments after filing their financial statement by submitting a new Form 13.
Federal Circuit Court Financial Statement: What Are The Recorded Details in Form 13?
Applicants must provide details regarding weekly income derived from:
- Interest earned
- Government benefits;
- Trust Monies;
- Periodic superannuation payments;
- Workers compensation;
- Income protection insurance; and
- Termination/redundancy payments.
The applicant’s expenditures
This section requires Federal Circuit Court financial statement applicants to specify weekly incurred expenses including:
- Income tax payments;
- Personal contributions towards superannuation;
- Mortgage/rental payments;
- Council rates/taxes;
- Local government charges; and
- Iinvestment properties expenses
The applicant’s property
Applicants should include details of all their properties including:
- Real property
- All accounts held in banks/building societies/financial institutions
- Life insurance policies
- Motor vehicles
- Business interests
- Household contents
- Personal property
Under this section, the applicant must provide:
- Assessed and outstanding income tax;
- Credit card details;
- Hire/purchase/lease agreements;
- Personal liabilities; and
- Personal business liabilities
Superannuation includes details of all superannuation plans, the type of plan, and the gross value.
Importantly, financial resources include where an applicant expects to receive money from a claim such as personal injury claims. Further, it is essential for the applicant to fully disclose such details.
Disposal of assets
There are varying rules related to required disclosure about the disposal of assets. The Family Court requires separated couples to declare disposal of assets, 12 months before the date of separation. Whereas, the Federal Circuit Court of Australia requires separated couples to declare disposal of assets from date of separation.
Reviewing The Financial Statement
If applicants plan to draft these documents by themselves, they will need to:
- Firstly, complete every question
- Secondly, insert their full name
- Thirdly, affix their signature in the presence of authorised witnesses (Solicitors, Justice of the Peace, or notary public).
Alternatively, if the solicitor handles the paperwork, the applicant will only need to review the financial statement to ensure that the details are accurate and credible. Finally, the applicant will sign the document and the solicitor will handle the following procedures.
Federal Circuit Court Financial Statement: Disclosure
Applicants will need to provide full financial disclosure as soon as they start negotiations with their former partner. Commencing court procedures will result in completing the financial statement when they file their court application.
This is often a shock for someone who has diligently saved since the separation. Then, they find their former partner is entitled to some post-relationship savings. However, the Court will give consideration to who contributed an asset to the property pool. Moreover, the Court will also consider ‘non-financial’ contributions such as who looked after the home etc.
Hence, former partners may not be entitled to half of everything their partner owns. The Family Law provides a number of ways to exchange disclosure and comply with obligations in family law proceedings. The following are ways in exchanging disclosure:
- Production of documents
- Inspection of documents
- Copying of documents
- List of documents
- Orders for disclosure
- Answers to specific questions
Providing a list of documents for disclosure is the most common method for disclosure. The applicant will then present the required documents upon request. This exchange can be done electronically or by paper. For instance, a large number of documents may need to be placed in a shared drive that the other party can access.
Consequences Of Non-Disclosure
Disclosure allows both parties to know the entire extent of the assets from the relationship. As a result, this ensures fairness of asset distribution. It’s also an essential step in pinpointing the focus of a property dispute. For instance, a partner may have a valuable asset in business.
Through disclosure, an applicant may find that a business has more liabilities than assets. Therefore, this prevents them from wasting time, and spending money to the value of an asset. Failure to provide full and frank disclosure may result in grave penalties.
Firstly, a court order can be drafted to comply with disclosure. Court orders are legally binding and must be followed strictly. Also, continued disclosure failure or providing false information can lead to court orders that dismiss proceedings. Finally, parties will pay costs to the other party as a penalty.
How Can JB Solicitors Help?
Getting legal advice before drafting a Federal Circuit Court financial statement is essential. The court will provide a financial statement kit ready for use. However, it’s advisable for you to seek help from JB Solicitors in drafting up your financial statement.
Our seasoned family lawyers can help you make your financial statements that adhere to your best interests. Additionally, we can represent you in court if the need arises. We also have mediation services for disputed partners who want to come to an agreement regarding property or asset divisions.
Contact JB Solicitors today for your financial settlement needs.