If you are thinking about divorce or separation, or if you have just recently gotten divorced or separated, no matter your situation, the smartest thing to do would be to obtain separation legal advice.
This article aims to provide separation legal advice on the most frequently asked questions after divorce and separation. However, it should be noted that it is merely a general overview of specific topic areas and should not be used as a substitute for comprehensive legal advice suitable for your situation.
What Are the Eligibility Requirements For a Divorce?
By the Family Law Act (1975), the court must be satisfied with the following:
1. You have been living apart from one another and separately for a minimum of 12 months. To satisfy this requirement, you may have still resided in the same residence and be ‘separated.’
2. There must be no reasonable likelihood for both of you to resume married life.
3. If children 18 are involved, the proper arrangements must be made for them before the court is satisfied to grant a divorce.
Who Gets Parental Responsibility In A Divorce?
Parental responsibility refers to a parent’s responsibility to make significant long term decisions about a child, such as what school they should attend, whether the child should obtain a passport or what medication the child should take. The law in Australia presumes that both parents have parental responsibility. The exception to this is where there has been family violence or abuse of the child.
Abuse encapsulates physical, mental, maltreatment and even sexual molestation of the child.
Family violence can be several things, including assault, sexual assault or sexually abusive behaviour, stalking, repeated derogatory taunting and even intentionally damaging or destroying property and many more things. Please get in touch with a family lawyer to discuss your particular circumstances.
If there is a presence of child abuse or family violence – the courts may grant sole parental responsibility of the child to the other parent.
How Much Does Getting Divorced Cost?
Giving separation legal advice as to the cost of divorce, or sometimes even a cost range for divorce, is a tricky thing to do. This is because every case’s unique circumstances will add or detract from the cost of getting divorced.
Some fees are set-in-stone figures. One such fee is the application for divorce, which has a filing fee of $930 as of March 2021. This figure will increase yearly, so please note that this may be outdated if read in 2022 and onwards.
A reduced fee and even exemption are possible in some circumstances, such as when you are experiencing financial hardship or holding particular government concession cards.
The determining factor of how much your divorce will cost you is how willing you and your former partner are to compromise with one another outside of the courtroom setting. This is because the bulk of the costs are associated with court fees and legal fees. Sometimes cases are complex, and there are many assets involved that require more attention from lawyers. However, in other instances, former partners will relentlessly pursue matters against one another for emotional reasons. In such cases, matters can range anywhere from the tens of thousands of dollars, even the six-figure range if the issue is dragged out enough.
The best separation legal advice in such a predicament would be just to put aside the animosity and remember that compromising your financial future for a bitter feud with your former partner is not worth it.
Is The Stay-at-home Parent Entitled To Anything?
A common concern of the stay-at-home parent when considering divorce or separation, or during divorce or separation, is that they are not entitled to anything because they did not make any financial contributions to the mortgage or bills.
This is simply untrue. The court, in actuality, places a significant focus on the non-financial contributions of these parents, such as taking care of the home, children and giving up a career or study to do so.
If you are concerned about your entitlements, you should obtain separation legal advice, which is tailored to you from an experienced family lawyer.
Who Gets What In A Divorce?
After all the assets and liabilities of the parties are identified, as well as the financial and non-financial contributions each party has made – we move on to identifying the needs of the parties to determine who gets what. This considers factors such as each individual’s income, health, age, wealth and the need to care for children. The court will essentially try to balance out the split depending on the situation to ensure it is a ‘just and equitable’ split according to s79(2) of the Family Law Act (1975)
Importance of Seeking Legal Advice
It is important to note when you are thinking about getting divorced or separated, or already have – that you obtain the best possible separation legal advice you can from experienced family lawyers. This is because the best advice can make a significant difference to your financial future and emotional wellbeing.
Here at JB Solicitors, we’ll make the process as pain-free as possible. We have fixed-fee pricing for family law, giving you a clear sense of the costs from the start, and we will be sure to help you out every step of the way. With years of experience under our belt, we pride ourselves on making each client’s family law experience as positive as possible.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch to speak with one of our friendly and experienced family lawyers today to discuss your particular circumstances.
More Information on Family Law Matters
If you have any more questions about separation legal advice, or any other family law matters, head over to our blog section for more informative articles on a wide range of family law topics.
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