abandoned houseWhether your relationship was a marriage or a de facto relationship, property settlements are within the jurisdiction of the Family Law Act 1975 and the Family Law Courts: The Family Court or the Federal Circuit Court.

Whilst we have all heard ‘horror’ stories of separating couples battling it out over the division of their assets to the extent that most of the assets are depleted in legal costs, the fact is that most couples manage to make decisions about how best to apportion the assets and liabilities of the relationship without the need for the intervention of the courts.

With sound advice, mediation and negotiation as well as some practical guidance, property settlements can be achieved amicably and at a reasonable cost that can be shared by the parties.

Southern Legal’s Family Law Property Settlement Module is a two part module that is suitable where the separating parties have agreed, or substantially agreed, on how they wish to divide their joint assets and liabilities.

Part A covers all work in settling the agreement, preparing all necessary Balance Sheets and Schedules and drafting the documents required to formalize the settlement.

This can be done, if the relationship was a marriage, through an Application for Consent Orders made by a court with jurisdiction or it can be in the form of a Financial Agreement prepared under the relevant section of the Family Law Act. For de facto relationships a Financial Agreement under section 90UD of the Family Law Act is required.

Whether the relationship was a marriage or defacto, one party will need to attend an independent lawyer to obtain a Certificate of Independent Legal Advice.

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Family Law Property Settlement Module Part A - $4,950.00 incl GST

This includes but is not limited to:

Attending upon you, either in our office or by teleconference, to provide advice and accept instructions and to confirm that you and your former partner have agreed, or substantially agreed, on the division of the relationship assets and liabilities.

Preparing our Costs Agreement and Disclosure as required under the Legal Profession Act and confirming in writing our instructions to act for you.

Sending Information Request Forms to both parties under the rules of full financial disclosure set down in the Family Law Rules 2004. These forms will have detailed information as to what you must both provide by way of financial information.

Receiving your returned financial disclosure documentation, compiling a Balance Sheet and Schedule of Assets and Liabilities.

If there is any dispute over the valuation of assets we will hold a short mediation to try and overcome the difference of opinion. If this is not possible we will advise on the appointment of an agreed valuer whose decision is to be final as to the assets value. The cost of the valuer’s services is a disbursement and is not included in Southern Legal’s fee for the module.

Perusing any valuations and making adjustments to the Balance Sheet and Schedule.

If relevant, we will make enquiries with any superannuation fund that may be affected by the property settlement. If a formal valuation of superannuation interests is required the cost of the Form 6 (which varies from fund to fund) is a disbursement and is not included in Southern Legal’s fee for the module.

Confer with you and your former partner either in person or by teleconference to make final settlement agreement once all valuations and superannuation information is received.

If the settlement is to be in the form of an Application for Consent Orders, we will prepared the Application, Minutes of Orders and the Financial Statements for your respective signatures. Your former partner will need to attend on an independent lawyer with the draft Court papers to obtain a Certificate of Independent Legal Advice. We can assist with this process.

Once we have the duly signed documents we will file them in a Court with jurisdiction. There will be a Court-imposed filing fee which is a disbursement and is not included in Southern Legal’s fee for the module.

When the Court has made the Orders we will prepare and provide certified copies for each party and will enter the original documents into Safe Custody.

The module fee includes all communications, photocopying and faxes.

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