Division of Property


Do I Have To Give My Spouse Half Of Everything?

Every situation is different. Married spouses are entitled to an equalization and division of property of net family property on separation. Each party keeps ownership of their titled property. A calculation of each of the spouse’s net family property is done to determine how much one party must pay to the other to equalize the eligible assets accumulated during the marriage.

A careful inventory of the assets and their values must be done to determine whether any of the assets can excluded or deducted from a spouse’s net family property.

What Should I Do With Our Joint Accounts And Lines Of Credit?

You may want to consider notifying your bank that you have separated in order to ensure that joint bank overdraft, lines of credit or credit cards are not misused. After separation, joint assets and debts are taken into account in the equalization calculation and must be accounted for if spent by one of the spouses after separation.

Do I Get To Keep My Business, Investments, Inheritance or RRSPs?

Each individual typically keeps his or her individual assets. In order to calculate which spouse will owe the other a payment related to property, each spouse’s net family property is calculated as at the date of separation. The spouse with the higher net family property will owe the other spouse an equalization payment.

What Is Not Divided In A Separation?

Under the appropriate circumstances, some property acquired during the marriage and which still exists on date of separation and can be traced from gifted or inherited assets, does not have to be included as family property which will be equalized. Gifts or inheritances received from third parties during the marriage, damages received as a result of personal injuries, and proceeds of a life insurance policy are excluded from the equalization calculation. A deduction is permitted for the value of assets already owned on the date of marriage, if the existence of the assets and their value can be proved. If the matrimonial home was owned by one spouse on date of marriage, the deduction for its value is lost.

Will I Be Responsible For My Partner’s Debt?

Any debts in your partner’s sole name as of the date of separation will be included in his or her net family property. Ultimately they will be responsible for paying their sole debts but the debts will affect the equalization calculation.

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3300 Highway 7 West, Suite 210
Vaughan, Ontario L4K 4M3
Telephone: 416 987 3300

Fax: 905 907 0707
Hours: 9am to 5pm


Bortolussi Family Law is located in Vaughan, Ontario and serves the Greater Toronto Area including Woodbridge, Concord, Maple, Kleinburg, Thornhill,  Vaughan, Markham, Richmond Hill, Brampton, Bolton, Nobleton, Newmarket, Oxford, Orangeville, Aurora, North York, Etobicoke, Caledon, Whitchurch-Stouffville, King City, Schomberg, Mississauga, Oakville, Streetsville and Toronto.