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


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