Partial Property Distribution

PARTIAL PROPERTY DISTRIBUTION – Can the Court order that funds or property be given to a party before the Final Hearing?

What if a separating person needs a partial property distribution before there is a final property settlement? A partial property distribution may involve either or both of the parties receiving cash or other assets before there is a final legally binding agreement or court order as to how the total asset pool of the parties is to be divided.

Where parties are involved in a legal action, the Court may make various Orders in relation to the assets of the relationship. If parties are unable to agree on the value of certain assets and how they are to be divided between them, the Court will make various orders in order to prepare the matter for a mediation or if necessary, a trial of the issues. The court process takes time and can be costly for parties. In the period before any trial, the Court may in appropriate circumstances make an interim property order for monies to be released to a party or for a property to be sold in order to realise cash proceeds. The purpose for that release of funds may be to assist a party in need with payment of legal fees.  The court may also make such an order for partial property distribution where it is established that the party seeking that distribution would receive at least the amount for which application is made on final property orders being made.

If you would like some practical family law advice regards obtaining a partial property distribution or interim property order, contact our experienced Brisbane divorce lawyers or our divorce lawyers North Brisbane. We can assist you in all areas of family law, including regards final family law property settlement, obtaining interim property orders, maintenance claims and parenting arrangements. We provide complimentary advice during your initial call with one of our divorce solicitors and fixed fee proposals are also available. You are also welcome to read on for further information right now………

In a recent case before the Federal Circuit Court of Australia at Sydney Quell & Kirby [2018] FCCA 3870, Judge Harper ordered a partial property distribution to the Husband on account of his need due to diminished
earning capacity, poor health and his modest living conditions.

In that case, the court when considering whether to make a partial property distribution considered that:

  • the parties were married for 13 years;
  • the parties had 4 children together aged 18, 16, 15 and 15;
  • the wife claimed the total property pool had the approximate value of $4,700,000;
  • the husband claimed the total property pool had the approximate value of $7,030,000;
  • a business debt in the approximate amount of $2,320,000 was claimed to exist;
  • the wife made the majority of financial contributions to the property through inheritance and family assistance;
  • the husband made some financial contributions through employment, inheritance and a compensation payment;
  • the husband suffered from multiple significant medical conditions which prevent him from working;
  • most of the value in the property pool was held in real estate from which the wife derived her income;
  • the husband sought that an investment property be sold and $750,000 be distributed to him for various living and legal expenses;
  • the wife submitted that the husband’s partial property distribution application was malicious and sought that no partial property distribution should be ordered.

The Judge was not satisfied that the husband would receive more than $750,000 at final hearing. However, the Judge was satisfied that the husband had a need for funds and that the wife had capacity to pay. The wife was Ordered to pay the husband $65,000 within 3 months.

Follow this link to another article from our firm on Interim Property Orders and when you can obtain one.

Contact our divorce lawyers Brisbane or divorce lawyers Brisbane Northside for advice concerning a partial property distribution or your family law issues in general.  Our goal is to assist our clients to resolve their family law issues without the need to go to Court. If however court action becomes necessary, we can represent you at Court.

The information set out in this blog is not a substitute for legal advice. We recommend that you obtain advice tailored to your particular circumstances from our Brisbane divorce lawyers or our divorce lawyers Brisbane