Family Lawyers Brisbane not properly preparing for Family Court and Mediation
- March 16, 2019
- Jennifer Hetherington
- No comments
At Hetherington Family Law we take preparation seriously.
Recent events have indicated to us that not all Family Lawyers in Brisbane share our concerns about preparation…
Recently, two of our Brisbane family lawyers attended two separate events, one a mediation and the other, the Family Court.
During the mediation, the family lawyer acting for our client’s former partner made various allegations. One of the allegations the family lawyer made was that his client had made significant initial contributions to the property pool.
He claimed his client had a property worth several hundred thousand dollars when the parties started living together, and that should be taken into account as a contribution.
Award winning Family Lawyer Brisbane - Jennifer Hetherington
Early in Jennifer Hetherington's career, she noticed that family lawyers in Brisbane, would often make allegations, without asking for clients to verify that information until it came time for a trial.
Well, that is all ‘too little, too late’.
If you are going to run a particular argument and you are going to give evidence based on that argument, then you must have to evidence to back that up. You cannot simply state that you had a certain amount at the beginning of the relationship and expect anyone to believe it, unless you have documents to prove it.
Jennifer recalls a Brisbane family law case where one party was saying they had made significant contributions at the beginning of the relationship.
The Family Court Judge was absolutely scathing about the fact that, even at trial, there had been no attempt by that party to obtain historical documents which would prove their allegations of initial contributions.
Back in those days there was some difficulty in obtaining documents because banks statements were all hard copy and we did not have the technology that we do now.
In this technological age there is really no excuse.
It is difficult to determine the value of a property 5, 10 or 20 years later if you did not obtain a valuation at the time.
Sometimes we get situations where people decide to be too clever;
they have had a family law property settlement with their former partner and entered into a new relationship.
They want to claim that they had a certain amount of assets entering into the second relationship so they can claim an initial contribution when the second relationship breaks down.
Unfortunately, sometimes they are a bit too clever for their own good.
Documents are available on the Family Court record and can be used against you.
We have been involved in numerous cases where the other party has tried to claim that a property was worth a certain amount when they entered into the relationship.
However, when we required them to produce the documents from the property settlement with their previous partner they had put an entirely different, much lower value on that property.
In other words, they were trying to lower the value of the property to get a better settlement with the first spouse, but then trying to inflate the value to claim an initial contribution when it was time to settle up with the second spouse.
Those records are kept, and they are not that difficult to find.
So, in summary:
1. Tell the truth;
2. Make sure you have got documents to back up your story;
3. Do not ever think that you are too smart for us;
4. Use a specialist. Family Lawyers Brisbane – Hetherington Family Law- do nothing but family law. We will properly prepare your case and ask you for documents, to make sure that your case is actually able to be proved. Contact us to meet with a Brisbane Family Lawyer who is a specialist and will properly prepare your case.