Step By Step Process To File A Financial Agreement In Australia

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Planning on lodging a financial agreement? Unsure about the process? Hold on for a bit before you decide to consult family lawyers around you. Keep reading to get a proper understanding of the importance of financial agreements.

What is a Financial Agreement?

Financial Agreements are contracts that is signed between separating partners. It provides a basis on how their property and finances are going to be allocated after separation. This agreement can be made before or after ending a relationship. However, there are some conditions that have to be fulfilled in order to implement a financial agreement:

  1. Each partner has to submit a signed statement. The statement mentions that they have received independent legal advice. The advice covers how the agreement is going to affect their right. It also includes whether the agreement is in their favor or not.
  2. Each person’s lawyer has to confirm with a signed statement that independent advice was provided.

What to do in case of changes or cancellation of a financial agreement?

In case, you and your partner decide to change or cancel a financial agreement, you need to prove:

  • If there was an incident of fraud
  • If the agreement is inconvenient or not suitable
  • If there’s a change regarding child care or welfare
  • If your partner acted in an unfair way

 

What are the grounds of eligibility for filing a financial agreement?

A financial agreement can be lodged on the grounds that the partners are:

  • In an existing marriage or de-facto relationship
  • After a divorce or ending the de-facto relationship

The eligibility criteria remain the same for both heterosexual and homosexual couples.

What are the types of financial agreements available?

There are various types of financial agreements available. You must choose the one that suits your purpose the best. Different types of financial agreements are based on the nature of relationships. It depends whether you and your partner are;

  • Cohabiting in a de-facto relationship – In this case, you have to sign a Cohabitation Agreement under section 90UC
  • Intending to cohabit in a de-facto relationship – In this case, you have to sign a Cohabitation Agreement under section 90UB
  • Already married – In this case, you have to sign a Post Nuptial Agreement under section 90C
  • Intending to marry – In this case, you have to sign a Pre-Nuptial Agreement under section 90B
  • Separated after a de-facto relationship – In this case, you have to sign a Separation Agreement under section 90UD
  • Separated after marrying – In this case, you have to sign a Separation Agreement under section 90D
  • Already divorced – In this case, you have to sign a Divorce Agreement under section 90C

What are the advantages of a financial agreement?

The advantages to filing a financial agreement are many. Below discusses are a few of them.

  1. It lets you both take a mutual financial decision when in a relationship
  2. It is easier and cost-efficient when filing for a financial agreement before or during a relationship.
  3. That can be used to protect or separate some or all parts of financial assets from the other partner.
  4. It assures the more financially sound partner that the other person is in a relationship with them for love and not any kind of materialistic benefit
  5. It serves as a form of insurance.
  6. It sets proper rules on the financial divide between the partners and covers issues like property acquisition, bill payments, etc.
  7. It provides for a fair deciding ground on financial share and divides if the relationship doesn’t last long
  8. A financial agreement in action ensures clarity and security regarding the financial distribution
  9. It can serve as an estate-planning aid to guarantee property passes as planned
  10. It can offer capital gains tax and stamp duty relief for separated couples.
  11. A financial agreement does not need to be filed in court. Thus, it remains confidential to the partners and their advisors.

How to file a binding financial agreement with the help of a lawyer?

The process of lodging a financial agreement requires two different lawyers for each partner. An experienced lawyer is necessary to validate the agreement. If you are a Perth resident, reach out to family lawyers in Perth for the proper drafting of your agreement. The process of filing a financial agreement goes as follows:

 

  • Get hold of an experienced lawyer. There are plenty of skilled financial agreement lawyers Choose the one with an exceptional reputation. A history of successful case records ensures that they are well informed, prepared, and efficient.
  • The lawyers need to provide both the partners with appropriate legal advice in relation to the agreement advantages. Then, both partners need to submit signed copies stating they received the legal advice. Lawyers further have to confirm that they provided them with legal advice.
  • The lawyer needs to understand the needs and issues that are required to be present in the agreement. He accordingly then drafts clauses keeping in mind a mutual settlement.
  • A copy of the certificate stating legal advice provision has to be provided by the lawyers to their respective clients. This is necessary for record-keeping a valid proof of the agreement process.
  • The drafting has to be framed only after proper consultation with the clients. An experienced family lawyer can help understand demands better and accordingly frame desired clauses
  • The terms in case of cancellation need to be mutually decided and suitable for both partners.

Can a financial agreement be terminated or set aside?

Financial agreements can be terminated if one of the partners refuses to abide by certain conditions mentioned in the agreement. In order to cancel or terminate an agreement, a person has to;

  • Decide on an alternate agreement
  • Make an application to the court requesting to set aside the agreement

The court seeks to know whether;

  • The agreement was finalized in mutual consent
  • The agreement is complete with full disclosures made by both partners.
  • If there are still other aspects to consider

Now, that you know all the features that constitute a binding financial agreement. It becomes easy to lodge one. Remember to include an experienced lawyer to receive the best advice. A financial agreement is a pathway to an insurance plan that guarantees the fair distribution of properties among partners. Thus, it is essential to look into all aspects before finalizing a final draft.

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