Property can include anything of financial value, including a house, land, money, superannuation, shares, cars, furniture, and small household items. Generally, it is not worth going to court over items which have only a small value. Upon separation, you should consider taking the following actions:
- Informing to your bank: Notify them that you have separated and take steps to avoid extra incurring debts from your former partner that you might be responsible for. For example, you may wish to close joint credit card accounts and cancel a loan redraw facility that the other party can access.
- Reviewing your will: Take a look again to your will and superannuation or life insurance policies if your former partner is named as a beneficiary and you want to make an adjustment to it
- Making a property order: If you and your former partner cannot agree on how to divide your property, then either of you can ask the court to make a property order. Get legal advice about which court to file your application in as this depends on the complexity of your case and the value of the asset pool.
- Application to court: An application for property division or settlement to a family law court may be made any time from separation but no later than 12 months after the divorce becomes final. For de facto and same sex couples, it is 2 years after the date of separation. A late application can only be made with special permission of the court.