What is Partition?

What is Partition

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you co-own a property with someone else, but you no longer see eye to eye on how to manage it? Maybe you inherited a property with your siblings, or perhaps you purchased a home with a former partner. Whatever the case may be, when co-owners can't agree on how to handle a shared property, partition may be the solution.

Understanding Partition

Partition is a legal process that allows co-owners of real property to divide their interests so that each can own a separate portion of the property independently. This process eliminates concurrent ownership, enabling each owner to use and enjoy their share as they see fit.

In Victoria, Australia, any co-owner has the right to seek partition through the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT), with limited exceptions. This means that if you find yourself in a situation where you and your co-owners can't agree on how to manage your shared property, you have the legal right to pursue partition.

The Partition Process in Victoria

If you're considering partition, the first step is to consult with a legal professional to discuss your options and the legal requirements involved. They can help you navigate the process and ensure that your rights are protected.

Once you've decided to move forward with partition, the next step is to negotiate with your co-owners to agree on the terms of the partition. This may include deciding how to divide the property, determining any compensation that may be owed, and outlining any other relevant terms and conditions.

If you and your co-owners are able to reach an agreement, your legal professional can draft a partition agreement that outlines the agreed-upon terms and conditions. All parties involved will need to review and sign the agreement.

Once the agreement is signed, it will need to be lodged with the relevant authorities, such as the Land Titles Office and State Revenue Office, to register the new ownership arrangements. Once the agreement is registered, the partition is complete, and the property will be divided according to the terms outlined in the agreement.

If you and your co-owners are unable to reach an agreement, VCAT can step in and decide on the partition terms for you. However, it's generally recommended to attempt mediation before resorting to litigation.

Partition Agreements and Stamp Duty

One important consideration when it comes to partition agreements is stamp duty. In Victoria, stamp duty is a tax that is payable on certain property transactions, including transfers of land.

However, a partition agreement itself does not transfer ownership, but rather re-allocates it, so it may not attract stamp duty in certain situations. The State Revenue Office of Victoria's revenue ruling DA 017 pertains to partitioning dutiable property (property subject to land tax or stamp duty) and sets out how stamp duty is calculated when dutiable property is partitioned.

For example, section 27 of the Duties Act 2000 provides that transfers relating to the partition of jointly owned land, where the land is divided so each party becomes sole owner of part of the land, may be exempt from duty if the divided parcels are of equal value.

However, it's crucial to get professional legal and tax advice on your specific situation before proceeding with a partition agreement, to understand the stamp duty implications.


Partition can be a valuable tool for co-owners of real property in Victoria who find themselves in a situation where they can no longer agree on how to manage their shared property. By dividing their interests and becoming sole owners of separate portions of the property, co-owners can gain the freedom to use and enjoy their share as they see fit.

If you're considering partition, it's important to seek the guidance of experienced legal professionals who can help you navigate the process and ensure that your rights are protected. At Pearson Chambers Conveyancing, our knowledgeable team is here to help. Contact us today on 03 9969 2405 or email contact@pearsonchambers.com.au to learn more about partition and to request a free Section 32 contract review.