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Divorce & Separation

Divorce Part 3 – Negotiation

You may have a few ideas swirling around in your head about what to expect and what your contributions to the marriage were. How much is the house worth and what is my share?

There is an old saying in real estate about the 3 things that determines a property’s value: Location, location, location.
There could be something similar in Divorce proceedings and that is:

Negotiation, negotiation, negotiation.

The more you respect the negotiation process, the easier it will be to move on. It means fewer fees to pay, which means you start your life again sooner.

Where to start?

It is always best to write down your assets and contributions to the household BEFORE starting any negotiations. Be realistic. This could include:

  • What you brought into the marriage (any assets you had before you were married)
  • What was your share of the household bills and responsibilities?
    Did you do any renovations to the house?
  • Were you working at the time or did you rear the children and take care of the household tasks (eg bill paying, cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping)? Was there a combination of these tasks?
  • Were there any inheritances claimed throughout the marriage or after separation?
  • Do you have any debts? These include but are not limited to mortgages, credit cards, personal loans, student loans.
  • Do you or your partner have any outside business interests or shares?
  • What is the total of your respective Superannuation accounts?

As we have stated before, divorces are not always amicable, and it is best to think of your divorce as a business transaction (even if it sounds a bit clinical).

But who do I get to negotiate for me?

You will be your own biggest advocate when it comes to negotiations, so you need to be realistic if you don’t want things to spiral out of control. If you were to buy a house or invest a large sum of money you would make sure you received professional advice. This is often the difference between receiving your entitled share, or having to start over again from scratch.