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VIC Property Settlement - Final Transfer and Ownership of Share Dividends

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by stew675, 9 June 2015.

  1. stew675

    stew675 Member

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    Hello,
    This is regarding a property settlement order that took place in July 2012. An order was put in place to transfer ownership of shares to the other party. The share transfer order was completed and signed and delivered to the other party in February 2013 due to a number of complications arising from moving residence and proof of ownership and so on. The other party did not then move to submit the share transfer until March 2015. During this period, dividends on the shares were paid into my account totalling $420 between the settlement date and the final transfer of share ownership. 45% income tax was also paid on this amount during this period.

    I have the following questions:

    1) Who is the rightful owner of the dividends in the event that the period of the dividends payout is caused by the inaction of the other party?
    2) Assuming that the answer to 1) is the other party, is the amount required to be paid to the other party the full $420, or is it $420 minus the 45% income tax (ie. $231 being the after-tax amount).
    3) The other party is also attempting to claim ownership over any dividends paid between separation (Dec 2010) to the Settlement date (July 2012). Does the other party have any legal claim to these dividend payments?

    Additional information that may assist. The court order for the transfer made no specific reference to any dividends on the shares, either prior or post settlement date.
     
  2. Tracy B

    Tracy B Well-Known Member

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    Hi Stew675,

    Both positions are possible. It is best to contact the Supreme Court and enquire. What did the judge say about this during the judgment (not just the order)? Generally, beneficial ownership starts from the date of the order, unless stated otherwise. So, I would assume that dividends paid from date of order to transfer, belong beneficially to the other side. Taxes paid on the dividends attach to the shares, so it would be reasonable to seek partial reimbursement on this.

    I am not sure about dividends paid between separation and settlement date. Is the date of separation disputed? If not, it would seem reasonable that given the shares belong to the other side after separation, that the dividends paid on those shares also transfer from date of settlement. However, speak with a family law expert about this.
     
  3. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

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    It may also be possible that your accounting costs were a little higher as well and can be claimed. Maybe you also have bank charges.

    What do you think is fair? Mediation can probably fix this issue.
     

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