NSW Ex's Business Debt and Tax Debt - Am I Responsible?

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blossum71

Member
9 June 2015
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Can somebody inform me if I am responsible for my ex-husbands business debts. I am not connected to the business, and he was a sole trader.
The houses have been sold and property settlement is to occur. He has a large tax debt that I am apparently responsible for, as well as a large amount of his business debt (accounts, overdrafts etc). He has no superannuation. I have a credit card debt that is in my name. I have not sited any exact figures of the ATO debt, nor any details of the overdraft.
 

AllForHer

Well-Known Member
23 July 2014
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Property settlements are not influenced by whose name an asset or debt is in, but rather, by whether each party had a joint interest in it. It's likely you will be considered to have a joint interest in the business because you would have benefitted from the business' income, but I'm not sure to what extent that would impact the property settlement. It would be worthwhile speaking to a solicitor about this - Legal Aid can provide consultations for free.
 

scotchonrocks

Member
18 March 2023
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I would have thought that this would be a simple thing to get answered here. I’m facing same drama. Ex had not filed for many years during the relationship and is now suddenly filing with an enormous debt coming. He has warned me to expect to lose the house I have bought since we separated. There is no question that the money used to buy the house was from funds earned by him. Will the family court give any bias toward one party if the other was late filing returns. In what circumstances would such debts be considered to be his solely? Any comments? I’m in NSW.
 

Rod

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27 May 2014
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Not enough details to be able to comment.

There may well be a clash of bankruptcy and family law and you'd need to sit with a lawyer who understands both to know what your legal position is going to be.
 

Tim W

Lawyer
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28 April 2014
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Agreed
Not enough details to be able to comment.

There may well be a clash of bankruptcy and family law and you'd need to sit with a lawyer who understands both to know what your legal position is going to be.
Agreed.
Sometimes, a sole trader's debts can form part of the Asset Pool in a Family Law proceeding.
But not always and automatically.
We dealt with a similar question a while back.