Superannuation-splitting for de facto couples to be introduced in WA

 In Family Law

In October 2018, the Australian Government announced that new laws will be introduced for separated de facto couples to split their superannuation interests in financial proceedings.

How does superannuation splitting work in WA?

For most couples, superannuation funds often form a large portion of a party’s assets. In WA, only married couples have been able to split their superannuation when reaching a financial settlement.

Superannuation splitting involves a portion of one spouse’s superannuation being transferred to the other spouse’s superannuation fund. A transfer of superannuation to the other party is not transferable into cash and is often available to access upon retirement.

This means that under the current laws in WA, de facto couples do not have access to a transfer of superannuation in reaching a fair and equitable financial settlement. Superannuation for de facto couples is only taken into account as a financial resource rather than property, and the parties are not able to apply for their superannuation to be split and used in financial settlement.

What will the new superannuation-splitting laws mean for de facto couples in WA?

The introduction of superannuation-splitting laws for de facto couples means that the parties’ superannuation will be considered as property and able to be included as part of a financial settlement. De facto couples will be treated fairly by the courts and, in terms of superannuation, consistently with de facto couples across the country.

The Government has proposed that the changes to the current superannuation splitting laws will come into effect in WA in 2020.

Because we deal exclusively in family law, we can help you make the right decisions to get life back on track.

For more information, call 9207 1866 to discuss your unique family law matter.

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