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QLD Separation and Divorce - Entitled to Fair Property Settlement?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Jade Minx, 4 August 2015.

  1. Jade Minx

    Jade Minx Member

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    7 and a bit years ago, I married my then boyfriend, thinking that I would be helping him with his career move when he got an offer to go to Dubai. We were going to get married in 2012 anyway and with the laws there not allowing couples (or so we thought) who were not married to live together, we decided to just do the paperwork and have the wedding later on.

    Everything was going ok or so I thought. He was changing in his personality a bit cos of the salary that he was getting ($230,000 AUD + tax free) and the high position he was given through the job and it was stressing him out and I was always there to try and help him through it. Though, a lot of my friends had noticed that he was using forms of guilt and financial constraints to in a way control me while I was over there and I myself was finding myself becoming miserable and scared of upsetting him.

    I booked a trip to Japan with him and my little cousin in 2014 thinking it could be fun and could make him happy, the same year my brother was about to get married. I wasn't planning on going to my brother's signing cos he did say it wasn't a big deal and he understood that it would be expensive after a big trip. But as soon as we landed back into Dubai after the Japan trip had ended, my then husband had strongly suggested that I go to the wedding cos it would be something he wouldn't want me to miss while he had to work. So I looked for a return ticket only to show that they WERE really expensive at the time. So he said "it would be more financially viable for me if you got a one way there and get another one way back". We argued because I didn't wanna go for long and I didn't see the point in getting one ways. But he pushed me into getting it so I caved and reluctantly did just to keep the peace.

    The next morning (16hrs since landing in Dubai from Japan) I was to catch my plane and he was pacing, I guess that should have been the clue then, he never got up early and he only paced when thinking really hard on a problem. He told me to leave my access and bank cards at home in case I lose them. Which I thought was strange so I only left the access cards. I had no other source of money other than my Dubai bank cards. I got on the plane and landed in Australia 14.5hrs later, after booking myself into business class because I had thought. "If this was it, I might as well be comfortable". I landed and called him to ask him what was going on as my cards had been cancelled upon touching down.

    He had told me we were getting a divorce and that he will be cancelling my residency visa in Dubai, cutting access to my money, and boxing all of my belonging and sending it to Australia at my expenses out of spite, because I had used the frequent flyer points to upgrade my seat to business class without telling him so I should pay for all of my things it get nothing. I also was left with the responsibility of re homing our dog cos he didn't want him there and he had thrown out or given away as much of my stuff as he could but kept any of the electronic things he had bought for me. All of this now being told to me 72hrs since coming back from Japan.

    It was a whirlwind event and I was unstable for quite some time. Knowing that he had a property in Australia he shared with his father under his name and I quote: "in case anything happens between us it's going under my father's name". I have a property in Thailand under my name with which he said I could keep providing the divorce goes amicably. But the property I have was bought purely to build his portfolio and hasn't even been completed yet. Payments are still outstanding and he knows that without a complete payment, I can't get the deeds to sell it. He also know that cutting me off gives me no money and just coming back to Australia with no job at 26, it's very hard to get back in my feet.

    As far as I know (I'm yet to get the final certificate), a year later he filed for divorce and it should be completed by now but I haven't got any paperwork yet. We had waited 12 months for separation before filing. He stayed in Dubai and hid his money and assets within his family and was told by a lawyer to spend up big as if he was going broke so that I couldn't claim anything from him. And I was desperately trying to find a lawyer, any lawyer who could help me get a property settlement to no avail.

    It has been about 2 months since the divorce should have been finalised (June 24th 2015) and I know I have only 10 months left to apply for a settlement of some kind. Out of fear more than kindness I haven't contacted him except to ask about documentation and when my belongings which he made me pay for ($2,200 AUD) will arrive. I know that because he lives in Dubai and I live in Australia now that it makes it difficult to determine things, but I just need to know if I am entitled to a settlement at all?

    I was married to him and lived with him in Dubai for 6-7years, we were together 2years prior in Australia. We have no kids, I was working in Australia and left everything I knew to help support him to pursue a better career path. In Dubai I wasn't allowed to work and was on a spouse Visa which states that in my passport, he constantly restricted my access to funds and I was isolated from friends and family, and I have friends who have told me, and I have only just come to realise it myself, that he would constantly emotionally and psychologically bully me into doing things his way and I was always In trouble if I even in the slightest wanted to do things differently.

    Both he and I are Australian citizens and I know that he will go to any means to not give me anything. I know that this marriage hasn't been a monogamist one because he has paid for prostitutes to sleep with him, one incident was on 4 nights before our wedding in our hotel room. And I know because I was there and he told me what was going to happen. I agreed but only because I didn't want him upset with me and I thought this would make him happy. He left me at the club by myself in a dark part of Bangkok, to find my way back on my own.

    Please, I hope someone can help me. I am still in Australia, tried to find a job in the last year and a half with no success and I live only with the help of my mother who gives me money each month to help pay for my rent and living expenses and for my course that I am studying, with the hopes that this will help me get a job.

    I just can't believe that after dedicating everything I have to him and letting him do whatever he wants because I live him, even treat me badly when he feels it's necessary, that I could be left with nothing. I hope someone can help me. I'm not after all of his money or assets etc. but I just want to know if I am entitled to a fair settlement so that I can set myself up a little, and make it easier a bit to move on.
     
  2. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    In Australia, yes, you would be entitled to a property settlement, but I can't say with any certainty whether Australia will have jurisdiction, given he has and continues to live in Dubai. Legal Aid offers free consultations for property settlements - contact them and organise an appointment to discuss your circumstances.

    Sorry I can't be more help.
     
  3. Jade Minx

    Jade Minx Member

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    Cool. Thanks, I've not been able to get much insight from anyone because they are unsure too, I only know with certainty that Dubai follows whichever country you were married in's law with regards to family law. But just wasn't sure if I would be entitled to anything in general as he pretty much said I get nothing so was just wondering. Thanks for the help.
     

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