If you are considering a divorce, it is important to understand the division of assets and debts.

The division of assets and debt can be a complex and emotional process, but our lawyers are here to help. Dividing your marital property typically means parting with half of your assets, and some of those will have vivid memories and emotions attached. A win is not always only about the monetary value.

We understand the importance of protecting your assets, while minimizing debt, and will work closely with you to find a solution that meets your needs. Our lawyers understand that this is a difficult time, and our goal is to make the process as smooth and stress-free as possible for you.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation!

FAQ

How do you divide property in BC?

If you have separated from your spouse (a person you are married to or were in a common-law relationship with), you can ask to divide your family property. Family property can be divided by agreement (called a “separation agreement”). If the parties cannot reach an agreement, they will have to go to court or request help from professionals (such as mediators and lawyers) to resolve the problems between them.

How long after separation can you claim assets BC?

It depends on your relationship with your spouse. 

If you were married to your spouse before separation, you have two years from the date of divorce.

If you were in a common-law relationship with your spouse (you were cohabiting for longer than two years or you were cohabiting and had a child together), you have two years from the date of separation.

This is not legal advice about your case. You should discuss your specific case with a BC adoption lawyer to receive legal advice.

How is property divided in a divorce in BC?

A family’s belongings fall into two categories after two spouses separate: family property and excluded property.

The Family Law Act (the “FLA”) defines family property as property owned by one or both spouses or the beneficial interest of one of the spouses in a property.

However, the FLA excludes the following classes of properties from the family property:

1) Property acquired by one of the spouses before their relationship began;
2) inheritances to one of the spouses;
3) some lawsuit settlements and damage awards;
4) Some beneficial interests that are held in trust for one of the spouses;
5) in some cases, money paid or payable under an insurance policy; and
6) Any property obtained from the proceeds of sale or disposition of one of the properties mentioned in 1 – 5 above.

It is important to note that any increases in the value of the excluded property after the relationship begins will be counted towards the family property.

The following are some examples of family property:

1) The family home;
2) RRSPs;
3) Investments;
4) Bank accounts;
5) Insurance policies;
6) Pensions;
7) An interest in a business; and
8) The amount of any increase in the value of the excluded property since the relationship started.

The following are some examples of excluded property:

– The property you brought into your relationship;
– Inheritances you received during your relationship;
– Gifts you received during your relationship from someone other than your spouse;
– Personal injury or settlement awards received during your relationship, such as ICBC settlements, etc.; and
– Property held for you in a discretionary trust held by someone other than your spouse;
 
From: http://paxlaw.ca/2022/07/18/separation-in-bc-how-to-protect-your-rights/

After separation, assets and debts that are “family assets” under the family law act are split 50/50 between the spouses. Separate property of each spouse belongs to that spouse and will not be divided after separation. 

How much does a separation agreement cost in BC?

Depending on the lawyer and the firm, a lawyer might charge between $200 – $750 per hour. They may also charge a flat fee. Our family law lawyers charge between $300 – $400 an hour. For separation agreements, Pax Law can also charge a flat fee of $3000 + tax for normal separations.

Is my wife entitled to half my house if it’s in my name?

Your spouse might be entitled to half its value if you purchased it during the marriage. However, this is a complicated legal issue, and you should consult a lawyer to receive individualized advice on your circumstances.

How much does mediation cost in BC?

Mediation costs depend on the issues’ complexity and the mediator’s experience level. On average, mediators charge between $400 – $800 an hour.

Can my ex-wife claim my pension years after divorce in Canada?

Divorce orders are usually granted only after the parties have resolved property matters. Your spouse has two years from the date of the divorce order to make any other claims with regard to family property.

How do you split assets after separation?

A family’s belongings fall into two categories after two spouses separate: family property and excluded property.

The Family Law Act (the “FLA”) defines family property as property owned by one or both spouses or the beneficial interest of one of the spouses in a property.

However, the FLA excludes the following classes of properties from the family property:

1) Property acquired by one of the spouses before their relationship began;
2) inheritances to one of the spouses;
3) some lawsuit settlements and damage awards;
4) Some beneficial interests that are held in trust for one of the spouses;
5) in some cases, money paid or payable under an insurance policy; and
6) Any property obtained from the proceeds of sale or disposition of one of the properties mentioned in 1 – 5 above.

It is important to note that any increases in the value of the excluded property after the relationship begins will be counted towards the family property.

The following are some examples of family property:

1) The family home;
2) RRSPs;
3) Investments;
4) Bank accounts;
5) Insurance policies;
6) Pensions;
7) An interest in a business; and
8) The amount of any increase in the value of the excluded property since the relationship started.

The following are some examples of excluded property:

– The property you brought into your relationship;
– Inheritances you received during your relationship;
– Gifts you received during your relationship from someone other than your spouse;
– Personal injury or settlement awards received during your relationship, such as ICBC settlements, etc.; and
– Property held for you in a discretionary trust held by someone other than your spouse;
 
From: http://paxlaw.ca/2022/07/18/separation-in-bc-how-to-protect-your-rights/

After separation, assets and debts that are “family assets” under the family law act are split 50/50 between the spouses. Separate property of each spouse belongs to that spouse and will not be divided after separation. 

What am I entitled to after separation?

You are entitled to one half of the family property (see question 106 above). Based on your family circumstances, you may be entitled to spousal support or child support.