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Dividing Assets in Divorce or Separation In BC


By: Lowther Law Corp., Vancouver, BC

Division of Property

The new Family Law Act of BC (FLA) provides for the division of a family’s assets. The division takes place upon a divorce, annulment or declaration by a court that there is no reasonable prospect reconciliation between the parties.

So what are family assets? They are defined as those assets which are owned by either spouse, and which are ordinarily used for a family purpose. This can include the family home, car, art, recreational property and so on. Family assets also include Tax Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs), pension plans and Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs).

The division of property can take place by either selling the property and dividing the proceeds or by the court ordering that one spouse may keep the property upon paying compensation to the other spouse.

Business assets held by one spouse can be considered as family assets if the other spouse made a direct or indirect contribution by way of effective household management and child-rearing responsibilities.

In the case of RRSPs, the Income Tax Act provides for a “rollover” permitting RRSPs to be transferred from one spouse to the other, without income tax becoming payable. However, a court order or written separation agreement is required by Revenue Canada. It is always best to obtain legal advice when substantial assets are involved.

Ultimately, it is only the Supreme Court which has the jurisdiction to deal with the division of family property.

If you are making payments on a property you can’t sell or are having difficulty paying your mortgage payments due to divorce or separation, contact Kristen if you have questions. We don’t charge any fees or commissions, we are here to help and provide you with immediate solutions. Contact Kristen: 604- 812-3718.