Myth Buster: There is a period of time that I have to wait until we can settle property.
There is no set time you should wait before you begin making arrangements for your property. You can begin dealing with this as soon as you separate. In fact, the sooner your property matters are formalised, the better.
The Court has a limitation period to commence proceedings for property matters of 1 year from the date of divorce becoming final for married couples. Otherwise, 2 years from the date of separation for de facto relationships.
If you are married, you should not make an Application for Divorce until your property matters are finalised. This is so that you can prioritise getting the best outcome at settlement, rather than trying to meet a deadline. It is possible to make an Application to the Court after your limitation period has expired. However, it is very difficult and you should not rely upon that option.
When you finalise your property settlement, all assets and liabilities of both parties are considered. This includes those obtained after separation. Likewise, any assets of the relationship that are no longer owned by either party (for example, if you or your former partner spent significant amounts of money) would no longer form part of the property pool. It is therefore best to secure a settlement as soon as possible following separation.
If you’re looking for a lawyer to assist you through these times, get into contact with Ruhl Family Law Centre today.