Property (Relationships) Act 1976

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38 Inquiries, and settlement of schemes

(1)

The court may, on any application under this Act, appoint the Registrar of the court, or such other person as the court thinks fit, to make an inquiry into the matters of fact in issue between the parties, and to report thereon to the court.

(2)

A copy of every such report shall be given to the lawyer appearing for each party to the proceedings or, if any party is not represented by a lawyer, to that party. Any party may tender evidence on any matter referred to in any such report.

(3)

The court may, on any application under this Act, with the consent of the parties, appoint the Registrar of the court, or such other person as the court thinks fit, to settle a scheme in respect of the property comprised in the application and to submit it to the court for approval.

(4)

Fees payable to any person (other than the Registrar) appointed under subsection (1) or subsection (3), and reasonable expenses incurred,—

(a)

may be determined in accordance with regulations made under this Act; and

(b)

are payable out of public money appropriated by Parliament for the purpose:

provided that, if the court thinks proper, it may order any party to refund to the Crown such amount as the court specifies in respect of those fees and expenses, and that amount shall be a debt due to the Crown by that party and, in default of payment of the amount, payment thereof may be enforced, by order of the District Court or the High Court as the case may require, in the same manner as a judgment of that court.

Section 38(2): amended, on 1 February 2002, by section 42(a) of the Property (Relationships) Amendment Act 2001 (2001 No 5).

Section 38(2): amended, on 1 February 2002, by section 42(b) of the Property (Relationships) Amendment Act 2001 (2001 No 5).

Section 38(4): replaced, on 1 July 1994, by section 4 of the Matrimonial Property Amendment Act 1994 (1994 No 45).

Section 38(4)(b): replaced, on 3 June 1998, by section 3 of the Matrimonial Property Amendment Act 1998 (1998 No 54).

Section 38(4) proviso: amended, on 1 March 2017, by section 261 of the District Court Act 2016 (2016 No 49).