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Info campaign on Property (Relationships) Act

Media Statement

Public information campaign on Property (Relationships) Act


Newspaper and radio advertisements from today will encourage people to learn of their new rights and obligations under the Property (Relationships) Act. The Act deals with what happens to property when a marriage or defacto relationship ends.

The Associate Minister of Justice Margaret Wilson says the campaign will suggest that people get printed information from libraries, community law centres, citizens advice bureaux or visit the Ministry of Justice website at www.justice.govt.nz

The information includes a leaflet aimed at promoting public awareness and a booklet aimed at informing professionals who advise couples about the new law.

The new law generally provides for relationship property of married and defacto (including same sex) couples to be shared equally on separation or the death of one spouse or partner. The Act also allows compensation to be made where there are economic differences between the spouses or partners after the relationship is over.

Couples can 'contract out' of the new law if they wish. Margaret Wilson reminded those considering contracting out that this could be done from August 1 2001; although the other provisions of the law do not come into effect until 1 February 2002. The law provides for valid contracting out agreements made before August 1 to continue in force.

ENDS


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