If a Flat (1 Bedroom) Was Given from Partner A to Partner B, Can Partner A Ask for The Flat Back at The Time of Divorce?

Hi Everyone,

Can someone with a law degree give some insight for the one below?

Partner A has bought Partner B a small flat for gift, fully paid using part of the equity from another property which both partners are joint tenant, legal documentations are all done properly including Gift Of Deed from Partner A to Partner B.

At the time of divorce, can Partner A ask for the small flat back from Partner B?

Western Australia based.

Thanks many

closed Comments

  • +18 votes

    You can ask. Whether you'll get it is completely different.

    • -4 votes


      Why would you ever give the whole apartment over?

      Assume there's a high change of divorce, & arrange
      your affairs to -keep- what you've brought to the
      marriage in your name (unless there are other trade-
      off's to consider).

      "Show me you Love me, by Giving" would raise suspi-
      cion in my mind, especially early-on.

      (Former marriage councillor R Mannis Friedman states
      ~marry for the person, No Thing(s). Be intimate w/
      the person, No Thing(s). He includes love & money,
      etc. as "things")

      PS In Sweden, I met a couple, buying a house there
      together. 'dunno why, but he didn't quibble about
      (planning to) put it in (only) his wife's name.

      It was only after I first learned of the imbalance
      (& had a quiet word with him to convey my thoughts
      on the plan), that he got his name added to the
      deed. I'm pretty sure that both names were on the

      She was noticeably cooler to me after the change,
      but I didn't suffer as much as my friend would
      have, ie, if they were later to divorce.

      BTW, IANAL…

  • +25 votes

    Not a Lawyer, but I watched Season 2 of Suits -

    In law you can ask for anything. It's the responses of the other parties that you can't control. Assuming Partner B is agitated, the lawyers on both sides will look forward to all the chargeable bill hours… until both parties come to a compromise.

  • +1 vote

    I have post-grad psych degree.

    Why do you feel the need to give an apartment to someone?

  • +4 votes

    In a divorce, you are strongly encouraged to mediate between yourselves. Yes you can 'ask' but the answer can be no.

    If mediation fails then all assets' values are pooled then divided between the 2 parties and the lawyers.


      Good advise

    • -4 votes

      I'd suggest: Try to bring a fair-minded & trusted-friend,
      from each side, to an -initial- "divide the loot" meeting
      at home (or in a room you can use, privately, in a Library?)
      (with No Lawyers) & see if your can Agree on a fair division
      of property + super(s) + etc.

      Let the lawyer(s) do the mechanics, based on your agreement.


  • +2 votes

    They may take into account what you brought into the marriage (like the house, or an inheritance), but the longer you are together the less that matters in a fair distribution of assets.

    What you can do in most cases is negotiate the split. So even if you split everything half and half, you could determine the value of thier part of the property and negotiate that you get the flat and they get extra money, the car, etc. If you can't agree on that they will normally have to sell the house and split the money.

  • +7 votes

    Partner A and Partner B should see Lawyer C.


      Don’t forgot and Lawyer D respectively. As only having one Lawyer is a conflict of interest.

  • +1 vote

    Who's name is on the title?

    • -1 vote

      Only Partner B's name is on the title.

      Partner A and B (both name) is on the second house.

      Partner A still have a lot of assets like super, shares, property, high value sports cars and very limited edition paintings (say the paintings alone is worth $500k) etc. Partner B only have limited assets.

  • +5 votes

    Maximum tax dodgyness level achieved


      So what part did the government play in all of this that they a) haven't already been paid for and b) actually deserve to profit from this couples hardships?

  • +10 votes

    See s13 of the gift act; Indian giving.

  • +7 votes

    Why on earth do people seek legal advice here?

  • +3 votes

    Please google what a gift is.

  • +3 votes

    If it was a gift B has a strong chance of keeping the flat.

    You have to take into account the whole distribution of assets accumulated together also


    Distribution of assets in a divorce is pretty complicated, the flat would be part of the distributed assets pool and would be difficult to say who would get it.

  • +1 vote

    Thanks everyone for the comments, looks like this topic is best with the seeking of the professionals.

    Mods, please close this topic.

    Thanks many


    No one here could give you a completely correct answer, even if they are lawyers. The reality is it depends. Depends on the court, Depends on length of time married, Depends on assets of each party and what they brought to the marriage, depends on reason for the gift, depends on financial situations of both parties. You can ask for anything and say no or yes to anything but in the end it comes down to what the courts will enforce if there is a disagreement.


    Why would you give a gift if you were ever going to ask for it back?


    Who is the divorcee? Partner A or Partner B?


    I always thought that legally it would be 50/50 split of all assets as long as you live together long enough, which you might be able to negotiate a slightly larger split 55/45 or 60/40 depending if other party agrees vs ongoing legal costs that might be bulding up.

  • Thread closed, as requested by OP.

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