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Divorce Lawyer Explains the Steps You Can Take if You are Unhappy with Your Final Orders

If you are not satisfied with your Final Orders made by the Court, your divorce lawyer can provide you with some advice about your options of an Appeal. Appeals must be filed within 28 days of the Orders being made.

However, the filing of an appeal does not automatically stop the obligations contained in the Final Orders. As such, your divorce lawyer may advise whether it is appropriate to file an application to stay the Final Orders. If the application for a stay is successful, the Final Orders will not operate until the appeal is decided.

The application for a stay of the proceedings will depend on whether the stay is necessary to preserve the subject matter of the litigation. For example, is there a risk that there will not be any money left over to make a pay out if the appeal is successful. There will need to be some kind of exceptional circumstance.
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Innovations in the Family Court – Responses to Emerging Challenges

The year of 2020 has presented a multitude of challenges to the Family Courts of Australia. We have seen the Family Court respond to these challenges swiftly and boldly to ensure that Australian families are supported through the Family Law system in these difficult times. See below for some insight into some of the Court’s commendable innovations including:

  1. The Virtual courtroom;
  2. The COVID-19 List; and
  3. The Lighthouse project

The Virtual Court Room

In response to the COVID-19 restrictions and social distancing rules, the Family Courts are now operating on a virtual basis and are conducting Court hearings using two main platforms:

  1. Video conferencing via Microsoft Teams; and
  2. Telephone conferencing

This introduction of the virtual Court room has been bolstered by the implementation of an Online Court file which allows lawyers and litigants to file and access Court documents online.

Although hearings are now taking place virtually, the formalities of usual Court room etiquette and behaviour remain an expectation.
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To Be or Not to Be – Our Family Law Lawyers Explain the Requirements of De Facto

Our Family Law Lawyers know the importance of obtaining instructions about the nature of your relationship and whether it meets the legal requirements of a defacto relationship.

In the recent case of Bava & Chaudry [2021], the parties had a relationship of about 2 and a half years. They were not married.

The Applicant’s family law lawyers filed an application seeking property orders on the basis that she believed the parties were in a de facto relationship. The Respondent, on the other hand, argued that the parties were never in a de facto relationship, despite the relationship spanning over 2 years.

The question that the Court was required to consider was whether a de facto relationship existed at all. That is, whether having regard to all the circumstances of their relationship they had a relationship as a couple living together on a genuine domestic basis.

The Court considered the following factors put forward by the family law lawyers:
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What You Need to Show the Court to Obtain a Divorce

In order to obtain a divorce, there are certain requirements depending on whether you have children under the age of 18 years. If you do have children under the age of 18 years, your divorce lawyer will need to demonstrate to the Court that:

  1. Proper arrangements in all the circumstances have been made for the care, welfare and development of the children, or
  2. That there are circumstances by reason of which the divorce order should take effect even though the court is not satisfied that such arrangements have been made.

There is a positive obligation on the Court not to allow divorce orders to take effect unless proper arrangements have been made for the children. Your divorce lawyer will consider the following factors when advising you: whether any child support is being paid, whether both parents are spending time with the children, the health of the children and whether they are attending and progressing in school.
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The Family Court Merger – Our Family Law Lawyers Outline What You Need to Know

By Chloe Elkerton, Family Law Solicitor

Last week the Morrison Government passed a Bill that will undoubtedly result in the biggest overhaul of Australia’s Family Court system since 1975.

Under our current Family Law structure, family law lawyers will tell you that matters proceed to hearing in one of either two Courts:

  1. The Family Court of Australia – which deals with complex family law matters, and
  2. The Federal Circuit Court of Australia – which deals with less complex family law matters and also other areas of law including migration, bankruptcy, human rights, industrial law and more.

The Family Court of Australia was established in 1976 as a stand-alone specialist Court. It recognised that many family law matters are complex and require specialised Judges and staff to support vulnerable Australian families.

The Federal Circuit Court was then established in 1999 to alleviate the workload of the Family Court by dealing with less-complex family matters. Approximately 90% of the matters in this Court are family law matters.
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Prenuptial Agreements and the importance of complying with the Family Law Act

By Dylan Williams, Family Law Solicitor.

A prenuptial agreement, known as a ‘binding financial agreement’ under the the Family Law Act, is an agreement  with your partner to  predetermine how your assets will be distributed in the event of the breakdown of your relationship.

It is important that you speak with one of our prenuptial agreement lawyers to ensure the agreement complies with the Family Law Act so as to ensure that there can be no challenge to the enforceability of the agreement.

You and your partner can enter into a binding financial agreement prior to the commencement of the marriage / de facto relationship, throughout the marriage / de facto relationship, or after you have separated and or divorced..

A prenuptial agreement lawyer can advise you that the benefit of a binding financial agreement is it can deal with all assets including  superannuation, inheritances, trusts, businesses, investments, shares, debts and other liabilities. If you would like to look further into the benefits of a prenuptial agreement, please click here for further information.
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4 Important Questions You Should Ask Your Divorce Lawyer

By Carolyn Munk, Principal Family Lawyer. 

Your Divorce Lawyer will tell you that an early practical and cost effective outcome is the best outcome for you and for the family as a whole.

Sometimes in complex matters that is not possible, but in many cases, if the client is well informed then such an outcome is easier to achieve.

Our Divorce Lawyers try to ensure our clients are informed about the following considerations:-

  1. What will be the impact of litigation upon the family and the future of the family to work together
  2. What is my best likely outcome
  3. What are the risks and the worst likely outcome
  4. How much will the legal costs be if I:-
    • Settle the case now
    • Try to see what settlement can be achieved if I participate in mediation
    • Proceed to litigation and let a Judge decide what financial and or parenting Orders should be made for my family.

While the Judges do the best they can in a limited time frame and with a limited knowledge of your family; there are significant Court delays and these are now probably the worst that they have ever been.
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Spousal Maintenance – Divorce Lawyers Explain How Much Is Reasonable

By Chloe Elkerton, Family Law Solicitor.

Divorce lawyers are often asked about rights to spouse maintenance. Spouse maintenance is financial support paid by a party to a marriage or de facto relationship to their former spouse after the relationship has broken down. The Court has the power to make an Oder for one party to pay spousal maintenance in circumstances where:

  1. One party is unable to support themselves and has an adequate reason for being unable to do so; and
  2. The other party is reasonably able to pay.

A question Divorce lawyers are often faced with, is, how much will I be required to pay?

In the recent case of Simpkin & Simpkin [2020], the trial Judge considered an application for spousal maintenance by a Wife who was in receipt of a disability support pension and was unable to work. On the other hand, the Husband was in a managerial position earning an annual salary of $240,000.
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