Third parties in family law proceedings

Posted on Jan 31, 2018 by Rebecca Furner   |   Categories: Family Law

Going Through a Divorce and my Ex Transferred her House into her New Boyfriend’s name – What Now?

Emotions are running high and you’re at your wits end… then this happens! Your ex is trying to hide matrimonial assets to protect them from division under the property settlement, and you just found out she transferred to her boyfriend a house that was just in your Ex’s name.

The good news is the Family Law Courts have the power under the Family Law Act to make orders in the property settlement concerning the rights of third parties (eg. The new beau).
The Court can do this either by:

1. Including the house when considering what assets, liabilities and superannuation should fall into the “pool” for division in the settlement;

2. Using the Court’s “accrued jurisdiction” and making orders affecting third parties, eg. Where a matrimonial asset is owned jointly with a third party (like the new boyfriend, or a family member) or perhaps where a family member asserts they loaned money to the parties “secured” over one of the assets);

3. Directing a third party to do or not do a thing in relation to matrimonial property;

4. Altering the third party’s rights in matrimonial property;

5. Restraining a third party from commencing legal proceedings against the husband or wife;

You might also have an argument that your Ex “wasted” the value in the asset by transferring it at less than market value to her boyfriend, or if she received full price then those funds could simply be preserved for later division in the property settlement.

There are other ways to protect the assets prior to property settlement. To find out more, speak with an experienced family law solicitor.