Divorce Property Settlement
Know where you stand. Some lawyers unrealistically raise your expectations, leading to lengthy and expensive proceedings. In the end, the outcome is disappointing, and you’ve spent a fortune on legal fees trying to achieve something that was never going to happen. Our divorce property settlement assessment will tell you how much of the property you really are likely to get. We won’t conduct your proceedings, so we have no interest in raising your expectations unrealistically.
How Much Property Will You Get? Receive an independent divorce property settlement assessment of the likely outcome of your property proceedings from an experience Family Court Barrister.
- How will a case assessment help you?
- How does it work?
- Who carries out the case assessment?
- Who is a case assessment appropriate for?
- Who is a case assessment not appropriate for?
- What information do you need to provide?
- Is it confidential?
- Is there a guarantee that the case assessment will be correct?
How will a Case Assessment Help you?
There are many ways that you can benefit by getting a case assessment from aussiedivorce.com.au:
- It will let you know where you stand in terms of your entitlements to the property of the marriage or relationship.
- A case assessment from aussiedivorce.com.au is an independent, realistic assessment.
Some lawyers unrealistically raise your expectations, leading to lengthy and expensive proceedings. In the end, the outcome is disappointing and you've spent a fortune on legal fees trying to achieve something that was never going to happen.
We won't conduct your proceedings so we have no reason to want to raise your expectations unreasonably.
- It is provided by experienced family law barrister with a reliable track record.
- It costs only what the average lawyer charges for a single hour's work.
- It can help you determine if your lawyer is on right track.
- It allows you to negotiate from an informed position.
- It can help you reach an early negotiated settlement.
- It could save you thousands of dollars in legal fees.
How Does it Work?
A summary of the steps involved is set out below:
- Once you agree to have a case assessment and we receive your payment, we will enable your account.
- Your user ID and password will allow you to log in to our secure server and access the questionnaire.
- The questionnaire is split into several modules and doesn't have to be completed in one session.
- When you have completed all the modules of the questionnaire and are satisfied that the information you have provided is correct, your information is submitted for a case assessment.
- A report, based on the information from your answers to the questionnaire, is forwarded to the barrister who will carry out your case assessment.
- The barrister prepares a written assessment, indicating the percentage of the property that you are likely to get if the matter is decided by a court.
- You will then receive an email notifying you that your case assessment has been completed and is available for you to view by logging in to our secure server using your user ID and password.
- If you want to, you can print a copy of the case assessment and the report which was provided to the barrister.
Who Carries Out the Case Assessment?
The case assessment is carried out by one of a panel of selected barristers who have:
- a minimum of 5 years experience in family law litigation; and
- a demonstrated ability to make competent assessments of property settlement entitlements.
The case assessment is provided through a solicitor with a current practicing certificate.
Who is a case assessment appropriate for?
A case assessment is appropriate:
- for people who have been married and people who have been in de facto relationships;
- for people who have already separated from their partner or are contemplating separation;
- for people before they have consulted a lawyer and people who have already engaged a lawyer.
Who is a case assessment not appropriate for?
A case assessment is not appropriate for people:
- with assets which include trusts or multiple private companies;
- whose net assets are worth over $5,000,000.00;
- who have an ongoing and severe, long term illness or who have children under 18 years with such illnesses.
What Information Do You Need to Provide?
The information you need to provide is similar to that required when you consult a lawyer in person. It is the information necessary to assess what your property settlement entitlements are and includes information such as the following:
- when you were married or when you began cohabitation;
- when you separated;
- the value of your assets and those of your spouse or partner;
- your liabilities and those of you spouse or partner;
- your income and that of your spouse or partner;
- your employment experience and qualifications and that of your spouse or partner;
- your expenses and the expenses of your spouse or partner;
- your children (ages, schooling, health and current care and living arrangements);
- your health and that of your spouse or partner;
- what assets each of you has contributed to the marriage or relationship and the value of those assets;
- what contribution each of you has made to looking after the family and children;
- what contribution each of you has made to maintaining or improving the assets of the marriage or relationship.
Is it Confidential?
Yes. Both the information you provide in the questionnaire and the assessment itself are confidential. They are covered by legal professional privilege, just like if you were to give the information to a lawyer in person or receive advice from a lawyer in person.
Is there a Guarantee that the Case Assessment Will be Correct?
There can never be any guarantee about what the outcome of court proceedings will be. If anyone tells you otherwise, ask them to put it in writing for you.
Predicting the outcome of proceedings for property settlement is not an exact science. There are many factors which can have a significant impact on the outcome of such proceedings.
The two most significant factors that can affect the outcome of proceedings are:
- The facts
- A court's discretion.
Findings of Fact
Before a court can decide what a fair division of assets is between parties, the court needs to make decisions about what all the relevant facts are. Sometimes, there may be a dispute about the value of certain assets or liabilities. In most cases, there are different versions given by the parties about what occurred during a marriage or relationship. In the end, the court needs to make decisions about these disputes. This is referred to as making findings of facts.
The case assessment is based on the assumption that a court would make findings of fact that are exactly the same as the information you provided in the answers to your case assessment questionnaire.
In practice, this almost never happens. It is extremely rare that everything goes exactly the way one of the parties would like it to. Stating a fact can be easy. Proving it in court is a different matter.
The accuracy of your case assessment can only be as good as the information you provide in your answers to the questionnaire.
Under the law, a Court has considerable discretion when determining the respective property entitlements of parties to a marriage or relationship. This means it is impossible for anyone to predict with absolute accuracy what the outcome of such proceedings will be. In any matter, there will be a range of possible outcomes that will be considered to be "just and equitable" and one particular judge's view may differ slightly from that of another. Nevertheless, neither view may be viewed as wrong as long as it is within the range of outcomes considered to be just and equitable.
For the reasons referred to above, your case assessment can only indicate your property settlement entitlements as a range of percentages of the net value of the assets of the marriage or relationship. Usually, that range will be at least 10% (for example, the range may be indicated as "between 40% and 50%").
In some cases, the range may be greater than 10%. Cases where the net value of the assets of the marriage or relationship is small compared to the income of one of the parties or where there are children who will be living predominantly with one of the parties are an example of such cases.
While the Solicitor and the barrister who carries out your case assessment will use their knowledge and experience to provide as accurate an assessment as possible based on the information you provide, there can be no guarantee that the ultimate outcome of your proceedings will be as indicated in your case assessment.
All of this doesn't mean that the case assessment is of little value. Because going to court can never have a completely predictable outcome, you need to negotiate with the opposing party to try and reach an agreed outcome. Knowing what the range of possible outcomes is helps you work out your position when negotiating.
Generally, we would recommend that you consider offering to settle a dispute on terms that are closer to your worst possible outcome rather than your best possible outcome. (Of course, such an offer doesn't have to be your first offer). We say this because you should keep in mind that if you can't reach an agreement with the opposing party because you want an agreement on terms that are close to your best possible outcome, you will need to spend a very substantial amount of money on legal fees to try and get such an outcome from a court. And in the end, you may never get the outcome you want.
We don't suggest that you shouldn't get a second opinion from another lawyer if you want to. Or you may choose to order a case assessment from aussiedivorce.com.au to give you a second opinion. What we do suggest is that, if you have obtained another opinion which is significantly different to the result of an aussiedivorce.com.au case assessment, you ask the lawyer to explain to you the reasons why they think their opinion is more accurate. It may be that your case has very unusual circumstances. If so, they should be able to tell you exactly what it is that makes your case so unusual. If they can't do that, then we suggest you think seriously about the accuracy of that other opinion