Excluded Property / Property Division: Do You Have to Divide Real Estate That You Owned Before You Began Cohabiting?

September 28, 2020

Property division in later life can be complicated. A frequent question I’m asked concerns whether a home that was owned before a relationship started has to be divided equally.

In McManus v. McManus 2019 BCSC 123, Mrs. McManus moved into her spouse’s home which he had purchased 12 years previously. 5 years later, a year after the mortgage had been paid off, Mr. McManus transferred ownership into a joint tenancy with Mrs. McManus.

The Honourable Madam Justice Fleming stated,                      

[54]    Without considering Mr. McManus’[s] intention at the time he transferred the Family Residence to joint tenancy, there is no question he has established an exclusion under s, 85(1)(a) and (g), and his excluded property equals the value of the net equity as of January 1, 2007.

[59]      In the result, I find an amount equal to the net value of the Family Residence at the start of the relationship is Mr. McManus’s excluded property, pursuant to s. 85(1)(a) and (g).”

Mr. McManus kept the net value of the property up to the point of cohabitation.

Every family is different, if you have questions concerning excluded property / property division call now to schedule you free 30 minute consultation.


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