Section 90 Family Law Act exemption toolkit
This toolkit brings together everything you need to know about self assessing transfer duty on matrimonial instruments that are exempt under section 90 of the Family Law Act 1975 (Cwlth) (FLA). If this exemption applies to a transaction, as a registered self assessor you must assess it.
Section 90 of the FLA exempts transactions that are executed in accordance with a court order made under Part VIII of the FLA.
The following must apply for the transaction to be exempt:
- The court order must pre-date the transaction.
- The court order must provide a clear direction, and the property must be specified.
- The transaction must be made in accordance with the court order.
Assessing a section 90 FLA exemption
Use our interactive tool to determine if your matrimonial instrument transaction is exempt.
Read our endorsing examples if you are unsure how to stamp the documents for this exemption.
If more than one property is being transferred under the court order (resulting in multiple transfers), each transfer must be assessed individually and receive its own unique transaction number in OSRconnect.
When a transaction includes real property, each transferor and transferee must declare whether they are a non-Australian entity.
A non-Australian transferor or transferee must complete an identity details annexure.
For transferors, an electronic annexure is generated through OSRconnect. Select the email option when entering the transferor's email address. Contact us for help if you cannot obtain the transferor's email address.
Transferees must complete an identity details annexure and you must enter these details in OSRconnect.
Records you need to keep
For this type of transaction, you must keep:
- the sealed court order or certified copy of it
- a completed dutiable transaction statement (Form D2.2)
- a copy of the endorsed transaction
- an identity details annexure for each non-Australian transferee, if the transaction involves real property.
Find out more about your record keeping obligations.
Examples of Family Law Act transactions
Exempt transaction example
A husband and wife own an investment property. Consent orders were made in the Federal Court of Australia under Part VIII of the FLA, in respect of a property settlement between the husband and the wife.
Under the terms of the consent order, the court orders the wife to transfer her share of the property to the husband's trustee company.
Following the order of the court, the wife transfers her share in the property to the husband's trustee company.
The instrument transferring the wife's interest in the property to the husband's trustee company is exempt from duty under section 90(1)(a) of the FLA and must be self assessed.
Dutiable transaction example
A property is owned by a wife and her business partner. Consent orders were made in the Federal Magistrates Court of Australia under Part VIII of the FLA, in respect of a property settlement between the husband and the wife.
Under the terms of the consent order, the court orders the wife to pay the husband a lump sum of $100,000. In order to raise the money, the wife transfers her interest in the property to her business partner.
The instrument transferring the wife's interest in the property to her business partner is not exempt under section 90(1)(a) of the FLA, as the order does not require the transfer of the wife's interest in the property. Therefore, the instrument cannot be said to be executed for the purposes of, or in accordance with, an order made under Part VIII of the FLA. This instrument must be self assessed for duty on the dutiable value of the entire property.
- Last reviewed: 20 Mar 2019
- Last updated: 29 Sep 2017
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