Spouses are equally entitled to family property and responsible for family debt regardless of their contribution. On separation they are both entitled to an equal half interest of all family property.
Family property is all property owned by both spouses at the date of separation including:
- •Shares of corporations;
- •Interests in partnerships and other businesses;
- •Bank accounts;
- •Retirement plans; and
- •The increase of value of excluded property since the later of; the beginning of the relationship, or the date of acquiring the excluded property.
This includes property purchased after the date of separation with funds that came from the sale of family property.
From this initial equal split parties can claim that certain property should be excluded. Excluded property is property that was acquired before the relationship began or property acquired by gift or inheritance. It should not be divided. However, any increase in the value of excluded property during the relationship is divided.
We will identify and assess what is family property, what is family debt, what exclusions apply and what can be proven in court. We will help you understand what to expect in the process and assist you in making responsible choices for your future.
Given the impact that these decisions are likely to have for many years into the future, it is essential to have an accurate assessment of family property and family debt so as to protect your rights under the law. We will help you assess all your property, pensions, RRSPs, bank accounts, stocks, bonds, securities and investments. Every case is different and is handled on an individual basis. We will develop a plan that is specifically tailored to your unique circumstances.