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Do you need to make another Financial Agreement after children?

It is recommended that you review your Financial Agreement after you have children.

Usually, the birth or adoption of a child or children will result in significant changes to the income and needs of the parties.  It may even result in a greater income disparity between the parties.

For example, a mother is likely to take significant time off work for the birth of the child.  A couple may also agree that one of them will stay at home permanently with the children on a long term basis, forfeiting work and career opportunities whilst the other partner continues to earn at maximum capacity and add to their superannuation and asset base.

Contributions of one partner to parenting and home duties should not be overlooked or minimised.

For this reason, effort should be taken to review and update a Financial Agreement and last Will and Testament when children are born.  You may decide to add a sunset clause to your Financial Agreement, to terminate the Agreement on the birth or adoption of a child.

In any event, a Financial Agreement can be set aside by a court where there has been a material change in circumstances relating to the care, welfare and development of a child of the relationship - and as a result of the change the child or the applicant who has caring responsibility for the child a party to the agreement will suffer hardship if the court does not set the agreement aside (Family Law Act, s 90K (married), s 90UM (de facto).


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