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Why you need to protect yourself through Divorce.

Why you need to protect yourself through Divorce.

Divorce for any couple, is an incredibly stressful and life changing event.  Because of this, the strain and heart break can leave you psychologically and physically vulnerable.

Whether the relationship was no longer a happy one or not, a separation or divorce can be one of the most painful experiences one goes through.  It not only represents the loss of a past life together but also represents a loss of all your future plans, hopes and dreams which in turn, means we experience a deep loss and disappointment.

Divorce is something no one really plans for.  Your whole life is turned upside down. If you have children in the mix then the stress is amplified by your concern for their wellbeing and the consequential disruptions.  The disruptions may be within your home as well as your extended relationships with friends and family. It brings a great sense of uncertainty around your future; your security and what life will be like when the dust settles.

Surrounding yourself with good friends and family through this time is a must for anyone going through a major upheaval such as divorce, as is seeking sound legal advice.

It is a fact that you don’t need a lawyer to apply or lodge your application for divorce however, it is our recommendation to always seek sound legal advice, especially when you have significant assets and children with your ex-spouse.

This legal advice will cover such elements as care arrangement and property settlements.  The reason this is so important is because there are so many facets to each, that often in our experience, people are unaware of.

Below we have listed some of the considerations that are required when separating and going through a divorce.

Parenting Plans

  • Where children may live
  • Who children communicate with and spend time with
  • Schooling/healthcare/medical
  • Financial support for the children
  • How responsibility will be shared between parents
  • How communication will be arranged
  • Religious or cultural practises
  • And more

The law states that parents have an equal and shared responsibility for their children unless the court deems otherwise.  However, this does not mean that children have to live equally between their parents.  It is important to consider the best interests of the child and what is reasonably achievable and practical.

Property settlements

  • Real estate, including your family home
  • Money held in cash or in bank accounts
  • Investments and shares
  • Insurance policies
  • Inheritances
  • Superannuation
  • Jewellery
  • Any other assets
  • Any debts including mortgages, loans, credit cards and personal debts.

Property also includes assets and liabilities owned individually by either party, with another person or by a family trust or family company.

With a 4 step process under the Family Law Act, the court will

  1. Identify and value all the property of the relationship including debts
  2. Consider the contributions to the relationship before the relationship as well as contributions such as home maker and parent
  3. Consider all other factors such as future earnings, age and health, ages of children and length of relationship
  4. Considering the above the court then decides how and who gets what, ensuring circumstances are fair, reasonable and equitable.

At Smart Legal, our experienced team will help guide you through the process ensuring you know your rights to protect the assets you have built over the years together.  We will help you navigate parenting plans and consider how your children will get the best quality of care in a settled and stable environment where you can both can feel satisfied that your children’s needs are being met.

Call Smart Legal today for a consultation.