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Old friends and clients going through separation

Old friends and clients going through separation

I had coffee with an old client and friend today. With a sadness in his eyes, he told me he was separating from his wife after years of marriage.

It is sad that in Australia, a high percentage of marriages end up in divorce.

This is from the Bureau of Statistics:


In 2001, 17% of couples had divorced within the first five years of marriage, while a further 26% had divorced in the following five-year period. The most common single interval between marriage and divorce was between five and six years (6%). In 2001 the median duration of marriage to divorce was 12 years, up from 10 years in 1981.

I suppose you can only say that it may be in their best interest so that they can move on with their respective lives.

I suggest going through the following checklist if you are going through a separation:

1. Discuss with your spouse, if possible, what is to happen with your children.

2. Prepare a list of assets and liabilities so that when you see your lawyer, you have all the required information.

3. Obtain as many documents as possible to evidence your assets and liabilities.

4. Instruct a lawyer immediately to prepare a will. This is crucial to cover any eventualities prior to finalising your property issues.

5. Inform your superannuation trustee your updated wishes regarding your superannuation fund.

6. Speak to a lawyer asap so that they can advise you on your legal rights.

They may be basic steps but they could make the difference between a clean settlement and a messy one.