Equal sharing of relationship property from your 3rd anniversary

Once your relationship has reached its 3rd anniversary, the law provides that relationship property will be divided equally unless there is some justification for it not to be.

Relationship Property Agreements used to be commonly known as “Pre-Nup Agreements”. These type of agreements can be entered into by couples at any time, regardless of whether they are going to be or are already, married, living in a civil union or de facto relationship.

You’d be wise to consider what could happen in the event that you separate in the future or one of you dies. You may not want your partner to be entitled to a half share of property that you owned prior to the commencement of your relationship. You may not want your partner to be entitled to a half share of any increase in the value of your superannuation fund or savings you’ve accumulated during the term of your relationship.

A Relationship Property Agreement can offer some peace of mind to partners by setting out, in advance, how property division will be handled in the event that they separate or one of them passes away. It reduces anxiety or unpredictability for the future.

Back view of a couple of satisfied owners sitting on the floor looking through a window while they are moving house

Without a Relationship Property Agreement, any division of property, if you separate further down the track, will be divided according to the law.

Neither partner should bully, threaten or pressure the other into signing an agreement. Any agreement must be agreed to voluntarily after full and fair disclosure of the assets and liabilities of both of you.

If either of you doesn’t want to enter into an agreement, each partner needs to instruct a lawyer of their own to provide them with Independent Legal Advice before the agreement can be considered valid. Once each lawyer has provided that advice, they are able to sign and certify the agreement. The certification process is what finalises the legalities of this type of agreement.

Call if you want to know more about Relationship Property Agreements