If your marriage has broken down, there are plenty of issues to consider. A key one when you are living in Singapore is how assets will be divided. The team from Consilium Law Corporation answers common questions on the division of matrimonial assets.
When we separated, my husband and I signed an agreement on the manner of dividing our matrimonial assets. In the event of a divorce, will this be taken into account?
In Singapore, matrimonial assets are divided as the court thinks just and equitable. In making such an order, the court will take into consideration all the relevant circumstances of the case, including any agreement entered into between the parties for the division of matrimonial assets in contemplation of a divorce.
Am I entitled to a share of the matrimonial assets if I wasn’t working throughout the marriage?
In assessing what is a just and equitable division of the matrimonial assets, the court takes into consideration parties’ direct and indirect contributions made during the marriage, before coming to a final contribution ratio. These include:
• contributions towards acquiring and improving the asset;
• debts and liabilities incurred for the joint benefit of parties or their children;
• needs of the children;
• contributions to the welfare of the family. It’s therefore possible that the non-working party made indirect contributions and, in such an event, that party would be entitled to a portion of the matrimonial assets.
Am I entitled to claim a share of an asset that was purchased premarriage?
An asset acquired before marriage by either or both parties will be considered a matrimonial asset if it has been enjoyed by the parties or their children, or if it has been substantially improved during the marriage by the other or both parties.
My husband is due to receive a large inheritance. Am I entitled to a share of this?
Generally, gifts and inheritance falls outside the ambit of a matrimonial asset, unless it has been substantially improved upon by the other or both parties.
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