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Behaviour & Property

Our system of Family Law is based on a “non fault” foundation. The Court is not generally concerned with why the relationship broke down but only that it has broken down.

There are exceptions to this rule and in these instances the Court will look at bad behaviour.

The Family Court often hears arguments as to how one party’s bad behaviour impacted on property available for division between the parties.

John and Jenny had been together for ten years. They married when they were in their late 40’s. Both had been married before.
Jenny introduced into the relationship a substantial amount of money. John also had money. John then introduced Jenny to a friend and the 3 of them became involved in overseas business dealings. Both John and Jenny injected all of their money into this business venture. Initially, they made money. However, towards the end of their relationship the overseas business dealings started to turn sour. Jenny blamed John. She said, “It was his idea. We have now lost money. The pool of assets which is now available between John and myself is only half what it had been when he and I started living together.”

Jenny then went on to run the argument that the pool of assets available for division between John and herself should be increased to what it was. She should receive her share out of the available assets and John should receive his share being a small balance from the available assets and accept all of the losses. Well, from Jenny’s perspective, that seemed reasonable. The business deal was his idea. They had suffered loss. John should wear it!

This is an argument, on these facts, that the Family Court would reject.

Jenny would not be running the same argument if, as a result of the overseas business venture, the assets of the parties had doubled. She would be asking for a share of the profit.

Both John and Jenny joined in the overseas investment venture. Both of them hoped to gain from it. It was not John’s fault that they lost money. Just as both would share in the profit, both now have to share in the loss.

It is important for you to get good Family Law advice in relation to the division of property. A lot of money can be spent preparing a case for argument when the argument has little or no merit. Our experienced Family Lawyerswill be able to advise you in relation to what a relevant argument is and whether or not it has prospects for success. Contact us to make an appointment.