Whether you are married or in a common law relationship, the issue of what to do with assets and debts upon separation arises. In all provinces there is a basic right to share property acquired during the a marriage equally, subject to some very specific exceptions. There is no such presumption of equal sharing, or sharing at all, following a common law relationship.
The exceptions to sharing assets and debts following marriages are quite well defined. However, the treatment of assets acquired after separation, how assets are to be valued, the date of valuation, how tax and other “embedded” liabilities in assets are to be treated, the best tax avoidance strategies, etc., are often highly complex and can be very confusing.
The potential for unintended, sometimes devastating consequences in the division of assets and debt should cause one to review their circumstances very carefully with a lawyer before making any lasting decisions.
With the use of properly executed contracts and certificates of independent legal advice, parties can successfully remove a Judge’s ability to interfere with the property division they have chosen. Review your specific circumstances with your lawyer so your negotiated property division is clear and binding.
Contact us for more information.