Family Law: 03 March 2020
In Chan and Chih the Full Court of the Family Court overturned the trial judge's decision to give the wife a further 5% adjustment of an asset pool because she had the sole care of two dependent children.
The Full Court said that as the Wife had by far the greater assets and despite her earning less than half what the Husband did, the further adjustment wasn't warranted.
The Full Court's decision was handed down on 14 February 2020.
The Family Law Act 1975 section 75(2) requires a court, once it has determined the parties' contributions to the acquisition, conservation and preservation of their assets, to consider whether the additional matters identified in the sub-section warrant a further adjustment of the asset pool in one party's favour.
In this case, the Court considered the following:
The court said that the wife's responsibility for the care of the two children of the marriage was the significant Section 75(2) factor which mitigated towards an adjustment in her favour and more so, because the youngest child was estranged from the husband. However, the wife's far greater assets offset this factor and there was no basis for an adjustment pursuant to section 75(2).
So, if you are being asked to top up the other party's contribution entitlement for the type of factors identified above, you need our legal assistance.
Most blokes get wacked by this adjustment and just accept what they are told. This is a complex area. It has nuances. We can help. And don't forget to read my note on Contribution Entitlements. It is relevant to the starting point of the Court's consideration of how assets are divided.