What to consider before getting a divorce

You should consider whether or not you both agree to proceed to divorce or not. If you both agree to a divorce then you can make a joint application, which can be more straightforward. When a joint application is filed, it is not necessary to attend court unless you elect to do so.

When one party applies this is a sole application. A sole application must be properly served upon the other party ordinarily by a process server although other exceptions apply. In this instance, you will be required to attend court in person or remotely if you have children under the age of 18.

If you have children under the age of 18 years, details must be provided to the court in relation to the children including:
– school attendance
– health
– where they are living
– what arrangements they have for time with parents, and
– who is paying maintenance to which parent for the care of the children.

How long do you have to be separated before getting a divorce in Queensland?

You must have been separated for at least 12 months and one day. This includes being separated under one roof. If you are separated under the same roof, you will need to provide evidence usually in the form of affidavits.

When getting a divorce, what happens with parenting responsibilities and property?

As stated previously, if you have children under the age of 18 years, details must be provided to the court in relation to the children including school attendance and health, where they are living, what arrangements they have for time with parents and who is paying maintenance to which parent for the care of the children.

Once your divorce is finalised, you have only 12 months from the date of divorce to finalise property matters.

However, if formal property proceedings have commenced (i.e lawyer assisted or via a court application) within that 12-month period, they are able to be completed within the time that the proceedings require.

How do I get a divorce?

If you are presently married and your marriage has broken down and there is no reasonable likelihood of reconciliation, you can apply to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia for a sole or joint application for divorce in the following circumstances:
1. You are an Australian citizen.
2. You are lawfully present in Australia for at least 12 months and can provide evidence from your visa or passport.
3. You have been married for at least 2 years, if you have been married for less you need to have a certificate of counselling. 
4. You have been separated for at least 12 months and 1 day including separated under one roof.
5. You have an original copy of the Australian or international certificate of marriage. 

You will need to pay a fee to the court, download and complete forms and open an account on the Commonwealth Courts Portal to be linked within the Federal Circuit and Family Court system.

Depending upon your circumstances you may also be required to upload affidavits, or to appear in person or remotely in court.

How much does a divorce cost in Australia?

Currently, the court charges a fee of $1,060 which is payable to the court before your application will be considered. This fee can be reduced for concession card holders.

Noosa & Hinterland Family Lawyers offers a set fee in divorce matters.

Do I need a lawyer for a divorce? 

Divorce can be a difficult and emotionally distressing period. Lawyers can help make it easier for you once your parenting and property arrangements are resolved or well underway.

Lawyers are familiar with the process and the completion of the documents. They already have an account on the Commonwealth Courts Portal. Lawyers can arrange for the service of documents in the case of a sole application.

Lawyers can assist with the drafting and filing of affidavits as they are well aware of the content sought by the court. 

When a court appearance is required, lawyers can appear in court on your behalf.

Next Steps

The offices of Noosa & Hinterland Family Lawyers are located in Noosaville and Cooroy. We help many clients, just like you, who may be looking for legal support with separation, divorce, property, and parenting matters.

We can offer you court alternative solutions, mediation, and litigation when appropriate. Our collaborative approach allows you to have more input and control of the outcome.

If you would like help to get a clearer picture of what divorce looks like for you and your family, you can book a FREE 30-minute Initial consultation with one of our Senior Solicitors by either calling our office or by booking an appointment online.