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In the event of a marriage breakup it is highly recommended that you seek marriage settlement and advice from a divorce lawyer. More so, it is critical to do so if you happen to be the partner with lesser financial contribution to the marriage.  Just as in the case of Lane(link is external) [2015] FCCA 173 (4 February 2015), advice from a  divorce lawyer is beneficial in establishing what your rights are in order to ensure that non-financial contributions you have made are given weight and considered in the marriage settlement.

In Lane(link is external) Judge Brown heard a case whereby the marriage was one of a significant length. It produced two children. Under-pinning the marriage was the husband’s acceptance of the fact that the wife would largely be dependent upon him in a financial sense. In this context, it was assumed she would be significantly involved in managing the home and caring for children.

Judge Brown stated that it would be inequitable, to the wife, to penalise her for these mutual decisions, when the assessment of the parties’ respective contributions towards superannuation is made. Clearly, the husband’s direct financial contributions, in this regard, massively outweigh those of the wife.

How does ones non-financial contributions through household and family maintenance be taken into consideration?

The question of what factors should apply to the determination of what percentage of actual assets and what percentage of superannuation assets each party should receive, in proceedings such as these, was considered by Moore J in L & L [2003] FamCA 40. Her Honour considered that the relevant factors were as follows:

• the purchase price of appropriate accommodation and re-housing costs for both parties;
• the need for a financial buffer for ordinary exigencies of independent living;
• the current level of the parties’ superannuation;
• the probability that the wife would be able to acquire appropriate superannuation benefits from her own future income;
• the husband’s substantial earning capacity and ability to borrow significant sums at favourable rates (from his employer)

In the case of Lane the Court ordered that non-superannuation assets be divided 80:20 in favour of the wife and superannuation be divided equally. A spousal maintenance order was made that the husband pay the wife $600 per week until 31 July 2018. Where spouses have made unequal financial contributions to the family, a divorce lawyer can help achieve justice at the end of a relationship.

Our specialist family law team can assist and advise about the best way to negotiate and reach an agreement in contribution assessments to ensure your contributions whether financial or non-financial are taken into consideration. Our Accredited Family Law Specialists are able to look at the best outcome for you and give you advice as to your clear wants in marriage settlement.

Speak to one of them today.

Matthews Folbigg Lawyers, Parramatta, Team of Specialist Family Lawyers are known throughout Sydney for their friendly yet professional approach. Our family lawyers can advise you on all aspects of children’s advice, post-separation parenting arrangements for your children, child custody rights, and general marriage break up advice.

Click here to see our information page on Property Settlement.

For advice about negotiating a Property Settlement Agreement contact us on 1800 300 170 or email us at

Family law situations can be complex and sometimes they can involve serious issues.  Information outlined is proposed to provide general guidance only. Due to the seriousness of legal matters as well as the uniqueness of your individual situation, professional advice should be sought. For advice, please contact one of our Family Lawyers.