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Relationship Property

This category contains 44 posts

Eating its head off

In Preston v Preston the Court of Appeal notes an observation of counsel that “the matter has eaten its head off.” By way of background: The Grant Preston Family Trust (the Trust) was settled in 2004 three years before Mr Preston met Mrs Preston.  The beneficiaries of the  Trust included Mr Preston’s children from a … Continue reading

A Little guidance on s 182

Section 182 of the Family Proceedings Act 1980 empowers “… the courts to review a settlement and make orders to remedy the consequences of the failure of the premise on which the settlement was made” in circumstances where a nuptial settlement has been made upon a trust of which either or both of the spouses … Continue reading

Invalidity upheld

Webb v Webb relates to whether a tax debt owed by the former husband in New Zealand is enforceable in the Cook Islands, and what that means in the context of the division of matrimonial property in the Cook Islands; the validity of two trusts settled on somewhat unusual terms; and valuation considerations when a … Continue reading

Response to Relationship Property Review

The Government has released its response to the Law Commission report, Review of the Property (Relationships) Act 1976 Te Arotake i te Property (Relationships) Act 1976,  which was presented to Parliament on 23 July 2019. The report has recommended that the rules applying to relationships ending on death be examined within the context of a broader review of … Continue reading

Directors are not owners

Pisidia Holdings Limited v Darby relates to an application to lapse notices of claim lodged against the title of seven properties following the end of the relationship between John Darby and Kristen Darby.  The land in question was owned as to a 2/5th share by Pisidia Holdings Limited (Pisidia), the shares in which are held … Continue reading

What’s left for the “spouse”?

The Property (Relationships) Act 1976 (the PRA) has primary jurisdiction over relationship property.   However, when there is a trust (or trusts) in the mix, the final division of property can  be complicated – and often neither side (nor the settlors or trustees who may be caught in the cross-fire) will consider the end result just … Continue reading

S 182 update

The Court of Appeal has upheld the High Court decision in Thakurdas v Wadsworth that executors can bring proceedings under s 182 of the Family Proceedings Act. As noted at [16]: “We add that it is now settled law that s 182 serves an important purpose in relationship property litigation, allowing courts to address property … Continue reading

David and Goliath?

Pertinent facts: On first blush Biggs v Biggs has the appearance of a David and Goliath style contest.   Nation J refers at [10] to the 2300 pages of documents that have had to be considered and at [11] notes that when claims are pursued “in a particular way, there can be scant recognition of the … Continue reading

A cleft in the armour of joint ownership?

When two people own a property jointly, what is legally referred to as being joint tenants (as distinct from tenants in common, where each party owns only a set percentage of an asset), and where one of the two joint owner dies, the survivor inherits the interest of the other joint tenant. There is no … Continue reading

How afraid should we be of Clayton?

The Supreme Court decision in Clayton v Clayton changed the trust landscape.  But how afraid should we be?  Are all trusts vulnerable to Clayton-style challenge?  Or just the ones that push the envelope?  And, if the latter, how far can one push before there is a problem? A recent decision of Moore J has provided … Continue reading

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