Articles

Are You Getting Your Fair Share of Relationship Property Upon a Break Up?

Thursday, April 06, 2017

The Property (Relationships) Act 1976 ("the Act") applies to marriages, civil unions and de facto relationships.  Generally under the Act, at the end of one of these relationships, the parties receive a 50:50 share of all the relationship property.  This usually includes the home, family chattels, and all other property acquired during the relationship.  However the Court does have the power to award a lump sum payment or order the transfer of relationship property from one party in the relationship to the other under Section 15 of the Act.

Section 15 applies when at the end of the relationship, the income and living standards of one party are likely to be significantly higher than the other party's because of the effects of the division of functions within the relationship while the parties were living together.

One of the most common situations where Section 15 can apply is when a wife has stayed at home to look after the children for 20 plus years, while the husband has been working and rising up the ranks in his job and acquiring experience in his profession.  When the parties separate, the husband usually has very high earning potential due to his accumulated work experience.  The wife, on the other hand, is usually limited in her employment options due to being out of the workforce for many years and is therefore likely to have significantly lower income and living standards compared to the husband once the parties split and divide the relationship property in half.  For example, one party gave up their career so the parties could have children and the other party could reach their full potential.

In such cases, the Courts have used Section 15 as a tool for compensation for the loss of income and living standards due to this division of functions.

Relationship property is a complicated issue and can also be an intense and emotional time for all parties involved.  If you have any questions about relationship property, want to know what your fair share is and what you can do about it, please contact Peter Fuscic on (09) 306 6746 (pfuscic@mcveaghfleming.co.nz) from our Auckland City Office.

 

This article is published for general information purposes only.  Legal content in this article is necessarily of a general nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice.  If you require specific legal advice in respect of any legal issue, you should always engage a lawyer to provide that advice.   

Recent Posts


Tags

Administrators duty Duress Economic disadvantage Company Law Recovery of money Tenants Ship Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017 Ministry Commercial Law Re Estate of Campbell Interpretation Act 1999 Section 29 Wilson v Donnellan Lease Relationship Property Contract Law Document Disclosure Maritime Lien Zero Hour Contracts Ship's Mortgage Acknowledgment of Debt Estate Administration Due Diligence Trust Check Up Testamentary writing Resident Domestic violence Ship Registration Skilled migrant Blackwell v Hollings Hawkes Bay Trustee Company Limited v Judd Immigration New Zealand Temper De facto Wills Trust busting Personal Properties and Securities Act 1999 Visa application Deceased's wishes Asset Protection Seperation ''Best Endeavours'' Part payment Terms of Trade Acknowledgment Elder Law Lump sum Section 15A Frustration Case Study Section 182 Family Proceedings Act 1980 Commercial Murrell v Hamilton Loss of income Health and Safety Reform Bill Ministry of Social Development Eviction Trusts Bill Property (Relationships) Act 1976 SN v MN [2017] NZCA 289 Wills Act 2007 Section 14 Re Estate of Feron Undue influence Maritime Law Beneficiary Rights Legislation update Skilled migrant points Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 (FMCA) Offending Testamentary capacity Ilott v Mitson 2017 UKSC 17 Repayment Broadbent v Ministry of Social Development Validity of Wills Limitation Act 2010 Shareholders' Agreement Interpretation of documents Unfair contract terms Consumer credit contracts Anti-money laundering (AML) Personal Financial products Partner of resident Division of Functions Auckland Office Violence Financial services Six years Trustee Duties Limitation defence Psychological abuse Immigration Grey Power Commercial Property Directors' Duties Charity begins at home Vessel Sale and Purchase Resident Visa Testamentary Promises Claims against estates Rest Home Subsidies Limitation period Fair share Family Trusts Partnership based work visa Will that do Work and Income Mortgagee Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Act 2003 (CCCFA) Creating Trusts Income Tenant Protection Order Privacy Act 1993 Financial services provider (FSP) Charities Subsidies Testamentary freedom Civil union Companies Act 1993 Abuse Interpretation Act 1999 Insurance Albany Office Valid wills Vessel surveyor Litigation Section 15 Property Will Residential Erceg v Erceg Financial Advisers Act 2008 Protector Limitation Act 1950 Gifts Wills Act 2007 Section 8 Lease Titles Mortgagor Twelve years Mortgage White v White Body Corporate Vessel survey KiwiSaver Trust Confidentiality Living standards Intellectual Property Expression of interest Sale of Goods Verbal abuse Compensation Wills Act 2007 Section 11 Family Protection Act 1955 Principal Interest Employment Pattern of offending Gifting Tamarapa v Byerley WINZ Fair Trading Act 1986 Changes Domestic Violence Act 1995 Constructive trusts Charity Landlord Reckless Trading SMC Lankow v Rose Character requirements Break up Marriage Amundson v Raos Clayton case Business Executors duty Physical abuse Wills Act 2007 Trusts Invalid wills

Archive