Just because your ex failed to disclose assets, doesn’t mean you get a cut

The non-disclosure of assets is a recurring theme in family court./iStockphoto

Family lawyers advising their clients inevitably tell them something like this: Provide full financial disclosure to your spouse or your agreement could be set aside.

Despite the ubiquity of this counsel, the non-disclosure of assets is a recurring theme in family court. But it isn’t just the amount, or the fact of non-disclosure itself, that can be an issue.

Determining the effect of non-disclosure on a negotiated settlement can be a challenge too, a difficulty highlighted in the case of Turk v. Turk, recently decided by the Ontario Court of Appeal.

In Ontario, the Family Law Act says that “a court may … set aside (an) agreement or a provision in it, if a party failed to disclose to the other significant assets, or significant debts or other liabilities, existing when the (agreement) was made.”

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