Are You in a De Facto Relationship?

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

It is common knowledge that when a married couple in New Zealand gets divorced, they, general speaking, get half each of all the property owned by the parties.  In New Zealand this asset division also extends to de facto relationships of more than three years, but what is a de facto relationship?  A marriage is easy to identify:  there is a wedding, someone cuts the cake, there is usually an adorable child in charge of the rings and most importantly, a legal document; a marriage certificate which says you are married.  However, de facto relationships are not so easy to identify. Read more

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. Read more

The New Draft Trusts Bill and its Suggested Disclosure Rules - How Could This Affect You?

Thursday, March 16, 2017

A new Trusts Bill has recently been released for public consultation.  This bill updates and changes various aspects of trust law.  One interesting proposed change is the rights beneficiaries have to trust information.  The most recent judicial case involving beneficiaries and trust information is Erceg v Erceg [2017] NZSC 28.  The Supreme Court did not find that there was a presumption for or against disclosure of trust documents, but that there is an "expectation that basic trust information will be disclosed to a close beneficiary who wants it".  The Supreme Court's analysis did differ from the lower Courts.  The Supreme Court listed certain factors to take into consideration when courts receive a request for disclosure.  They are: Read more

Are You Entitled To Value From Your (Soon-to-Be) Ex-Spouse's or Ex-Partner's Trust?

Monday, March 13, 2017

What happens if your relationship ends and your spouse/partner has previously settled property in a trust?  If the trust is valid, and there have been no dispositions to which the Property (Relationships) Act 1976 applies, there are two ways you may make a claim against that property. Read more

Dispelling Some Of The Myths About Property Division On Separation

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Most people who have been through a separation would agree that it is a difficult and stressful time. This can be exacerbated when there is confusion or misunderstanding about what property is classed as relationship property and what property is classed as separate property. The Property (Relationships) Act 1976 (“the Act”) provides a code for how property is to be divided on separation for couples who are married, in a civil union partnership or de facto/same sex relationship.  Read more

Recent Posts


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