The steps in working out the appropriate division of property following separation are as follows:
- firstly, the parties need to agree on the value of the assets and debts of each of them respectively;
- secondly, the parties need to assess whether it is just and equitable to put a property settlement Order in place;
- thirdly, there will be an assessment of what each party contributed to the relationship, both financially, non-financially and otherwise;
- fourthly, there will be an assessment of any factors which will affect the parties individually in the future, such as the arrangements for the child/ren and the income of each party;
- finally, the overall outcome must be “just and equitable”. It could be said that the purpose of this final step is to determine whether the proposed settlement is fair to both parties, taking into account the first three steps.