“I give this marriage a year”

Ending marriages of short duration

Whirlwind romances (and radio competitions!) can be wonderful and dramatic things. We've all been taken by surprise at some stage in life by a friend announcing a wedding to someone they haven't known for long but insists 'this is the one'. Hollywood loves the Las Vegas style wedding too. Sadly, however, some of these more dramatic pairings don't stand the test of time and the law makes special provision for what's known as a 'marriage of short duration'.

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The revamped Lowdown website launched in June this year will provide young people with more accessible and responsive online mental health support.

 

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Family Dispute Resolution

A new service to help families in conflict

 

In April the family justice system underwent a number of changes that acknowledged the Family Court is not always the best place to help families resolve family disputes.

 

These changes were introduced to reduce the stress on families and children by avoiding – wherever possible – delays, conflict and the expense that court proceedings can entail.  One of these changes was the introduction of the Family Dispute Resolution Service, also known as FDR. Read more…

When relationships break down, numerous issues arise around the division of property. One spouse or partner may be left significantly worse off than the other, assets are often 'protected' by trust structures and it can be unclear what property makes up the 'pool' to be divided. Two recent cases provide insight into how the courts are approaching relationship property matters. Read more…

 

If you're a member of a blended family you may be thinking about how to provide financially for your new spouse or partner, and your adult children from a previous relationship. You may be quite happy to provide for your spouse or partner in the event of your death. You may not be so keen, however, for your assets to then pass to your partner's children on your partner's death.

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When the changes to marriage law came into effect on 19 August 2013, we were asked an interesting question, "If a couple who were in a civil union decide to 'upgrade' to a marriage, will that mean that their Wills are cancelled?"
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Downie Stewart Lawyers Dunedin 8th Level, 265 Princes St, Dunedin, 9016 03-477 2263
PO Box 1345, Dunedin 9054 |  Fax: 03 477 4021  |  E: info@downiestewart.co.nz