If you are thinking about separating or you are contemplating getting divorced, one of the main issues you will face is how to divide your property. To finalise your financial arrangements with your former partner you can either enter into a Binding Financial Agreement or you can finalise your financial arrangements with Consent Orders. This article focuses on the division of your assets through Consent Orders. Financial or Property consent orders can provide a cost-effective and enforceable way to formalise the agreement between you and your former partner regarding the distribution of assets. The more knowledge you have and the more prepared you are in terms of what is legally required of you and what the law can do for you the clearer your expectations will be and the easier and more efficient your process. It makes sense to alleviate potential disputes and minimise stress by being prepared, doesn’t it? This easy-to-follow guide explores the role of property consent orders in asset division and provides you with practical advice on how and what you need to consider.

Whether you are facing a separation or divorce, being well-prepared for the property consent orders process can reduce stress and make your transition smoother and more manageable. Read on to discover what you can do to prepare for property consent orders.


Understanding Financial/ Property Consent Orders

1. What Are Property Consent Orders?

Property consent orders are legally binding agreements that document the division of assets between separated or divorced couples. They are submitted to the court for approval, ensuring that the asset distribution is fair and equitable to both parties. Once approved by the court, consent orders have the same legal effect as a court order and must be adhered to by both parties. Property consent orders can cover various assets, including real estate, business interests, investments, and superannuation.

2. The Benefits of Property Consent Orders

Depending on your circumstances, you may find that opting for property consent orders offers several advantages including:

  • Reducing conflict:
    When you and your former partner can reach agreement as to how your assets will be distributed, potential disputes can be significantly minimised and you stand to avoid lengthy, expensive and stressful court proceedings.
  • Cost-Effective:
    Consent orders are typically less expensive than proceeding to a court hearing, as they require fewer legal resources and court fees.
  • Timesaving:
    Once your assets and liabilities have been tabled, you have agreed the distribution of the property pool, and your Consent Orders have been filed, you will likely wait anything between two and six weeks for a Registrar to seal the Orders – provided that you have sought sound legal advice to ensure that the division of your assets is just and equitable. If you are relying on the Court to adjudicate on the division of your assets, you may find yourself in a position where you are waiting up to two years or more for Court dates and judicial determinations.
  • Confidentiality:
    Consent orders allow you and your former partner to keep your financial matters private, as they are not subjected to public court hearings. Your consent orders will go before a Registrar in chambers for Court approval.
  • Legal Certainty:
    Once approved, consent orders are legally binding and enforceable, providing you and your former partner with certainty regarding your financial agreement.

3. Preparing for Property Consent Orders:

Here are some straight-forward steps so that you can effectively prepare for your property consent orders:

  1. Identify and Value Assets
    What is property?
    One of the first steps you will need to take is to identify and value your property. So, what is relationship property? Relationship property includes assets, financial resources, liabilities, and superannuation in which you and your former partner have an interest under joint names, in your respective sole names and, in certain cases, via corporate entities and trusts. Those interests can exist in Australia and/or overseas.

    Property can include personal property such as household contents, antiques, artwork, and jewellery.

    Categories of assets can include:

    • real estate
    • inheritances
    • motor vehicles
    • lottery winnings
    • unlisted or listed investments
    • assets or shares held by trusts
    • digital assets including cryptocurrency
    • business interests and business assets
    • employee entitlements such as long service leave or redundancy payments
    • credit card debts, personal loans, loans owing to or by third parties and tax liabilities

    Your asset pool can also include Interests in assets or liabilities held together with third parties, although these may have a discount applied for lack of marketability or liquidity considerations.

    Does it matter when or how property was acquired?

    Yes, it does. When the court considers whether property should be included in the asset pool available for division, regard is given to how or when it was acquired. In short, how and when your property was acquired, your contribution, and your former partner’s contributions to property may ultimately have a substantial impact on what each of you retain as your final property settlement outcome.

    Can property be excluded?

    While excluding property is not commonplace, it is sometimes possible for property to be excluded from the asset pool. Usually, the court will consider all of the property available for division between the parties.

    It is vital to obtain accurate and up-to-date valuations for each asset. You may need to enlist the assistance of professionals such as property valuers, accountants, or financial planners to ensure accurate valuations.

  2. Assess Your Financial and Non-Financial ContributionsNext, you must assess the contributions made by you and your former partner throughout the relationship. These can include financial contributions (e.g., income, inheritances, and gifts) and non-financial contributions (e.g., domestic duties, childcare, and career sacrifices).
  3. Consider Your Future NeedsList your future needs such as your age, earning capacity and any health issues. This assessment helps to determine how assets should be divided fairly and equitably as you look to your future.
  4. Negotiate an AgreementOnce you have a clear understanding of assets and contributions, if it is safe for you to do so, you should attempt to negotiate an agreement on the division of property through open communication, legal representation and/or mediation. During this stage, it is essential to maintain a cooperative and pragmatic approach, and to focus on reaching a mutually beneficial outcome.
  5. Draft your Consent OrdersOnce an agreement has been reached, it must be formally drafted into consent orders. A family lawyer or legal practitioner can ensure that the consent orders are compliant with legal requirements and accurately reflect the parties’ intentions.
  6. File your Consent OrdersThe final step is to file the drafted consent orders with the court for approval. This involves submitting the required documentation, such as an Application for Consent Orders and the Consent Orders document itself, along with any supporting documents. The court will then review the proposed consent orders, ensuring that they are just and equitable before granting approval.

4. Seek Expert Legal Guidance

Given the complexity of property consent orders and the potential for long-lasting financial consequences, it is essential to engage the services of an experienced family lawyer.

A professional legal practitioner can assist you with:

  • accurately valuing your assets; and
  • accurately valuing your assets; and
  • advising you on your rights; and
  • advising you on your rights; and
  • drafting legally compliant consent orders; and
  • ensuring the consent orders are filed correctly with the court.

By seeking advice from legal experts, you will have the support and guidance required to effectively prepare for your property consent orders, ensuring that the asset division process is fair, efficient, and legally sound.


Securing Your Best Financial Outcome with Anumis Legal

Preparing for financial consent orders requires accurate valuations of your assets, consideration of your circumstances, financial contributions and non-financial contributions, thorough planning, and expert legal guidance. By entrusting your property settlement to Anumis Legal, you can ensure that your property division process is managed efficiently, equitably, and respectfully. For your fair, practical and timely resolution of your property division, you’ll have our Anumis Legal commercial expertise in your corner. Remember, separation and divorce can be challenging and having experienced legal professionals by your side ensures that you navigate the process calmly and confidently. You must be appropriately forewarned of what to expect in terms of the possible scope of the rightful share of your assets.

Are you figuring out how to divide your finances on separating?
Contact our expert family lawyers, right now!

If you are facing a separation or divorce and you need assistance with your financial consent orders, the Family Law Dream team at Anumis Legal is here to help. With solid expertise in family law and commitment to providing practical, strategic solutions, the approachable Anumis Legal team will work diligently to advise and assist you through this potentially challenging and stressful process.

Take your next step towards achieving a resolution that prioritises sensible, practical, prompt outcomes. The Anumis Legal Family Law Dream Team are here to help you to navigate your most difficult transitions with confidence, compassion, and expert guidance. Reach out to Anumis Legal today to discuss your options and secure your financial future. For your complimentary chat with our expert family lawyers, call 07 5455 6347 or email admin@anumis.com.au now. We look forward to assisting you.

If you’re looking for a family lawyer on the Sunshine Coast, check out our family law page to learn more about our services.



Nadine Love

Nadine Love is a lawyer and part of “the dream team” at Anumis Legal. She completed her law degree at Southern Cross University and received the New South Wales Bar Association Prize for Evidence and Civil Litigation. In addition to her passion for family law and therapeutic jurisprudence Nadine is also a celebrated international author, personal & business coach, drama therapist and motivational mentor. Nadine’s interests encompass swimming and walking in the rainforest with golden retriever Anu, and Australian Shepherds, Lex, and Onyx. She combines her strengths of advocacy, empathy and out-of-the box problem solving to support her clients to achieve their best legal outcomes.

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