Bennet Waugh Corne Lawyers - Lawyer - Family Law - Real Estate Law - Law Firm - Winnipeg - Manitoba

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Where did our money go? - dissipation of family property

Week Six: Dissipation of Assets

by Kimberly Soul

Sometimes it would be unjust to divide family property equally.

The conduct of the parties, such as one party committing adultery or being abusive, is not relevant when determining whether property should be divided unequally.

Property could be ordered by the Court to be divided unequally if one party has dissipated assets. Dissipation of assets occurs when one party gives large gifts to another person, spends excessive amounts of funds on another person, or on gambling, or on vacations etc. The conduct of a person can be relevant when considering whether the person has dissipated assets.

The definition of dissipation in The Family Property Act of Manitoba is as follows:

"dissipation" means the jeopardizing of the financial security of a household by the gross and irresponsible squandering of an asset;

 

If the Court finds there has been dissipation, it can order that the value of the assets lost can be added back into the equation, as though they still existed.  A spouse or a common law partner is required to bring an application to the Court before the expiry of two years from the date of the dissipation or from the date of the discovery of the dissipation otherwise the request for considering the dissipation will be denied by the Court.

There are other situations in which family property can be unequally divided.  The test is different depending on whether it is a commercial or family asset.  Unequal division of assets is very rare.

 

Posted by Alison Bennet at 12:00 AM

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