Divorce and separation

“My family law matter was made much easier due to the compassion, honesty and support I received from the staff at Duffield & Associates and I thank you all very much.”


We understand what you’re going through

Duffield Solicitors has undertaken many previous cases involving divorce and separation. We understand the strategic positioning of parties throughout the process, the court system and the tremendous emotional and legal minefield which you are travelling through. Our lawyers have 20-25 years of combined experience and are very familiar with all of the different aspects of family law and divorce. We can help you though this very difficult time in your life and suggest solutions continuously along the way.


The legal process

Following irretrievable breakdown of a marriage (regardless of the personal circumstances of the parties), and the parties having been separated for period of 12 months or more (including living separately under one roof), then the Family Law Act provides that either party can apply for a divorce or the parties can apply jointly for a divorce.

If making a sole application, and there are children of the marriage (under 18 years of age), the applicant must attend the court hearing and satisfy the court that proper arrangements have been made for the welfare of the children.

However, if making a sole application with no children of the relationship, or a joint application with or without children, the parties do not have to appear at the court for a hearing of the divorce application.

If a divorce order is granted, a divorce order will become effective from one month and one day after the order made. Neither party is able to remarry until the order has become effective.

The Family Law Act provides that within one year of the divorce order becoming effective in which to file an application for property settlement in either Federal Magistrates Court of Australia or the Family Court of Australia. If this time has elapsed, you will need to seek the leave of the court to proceed with an application. However, you do not need to be divorced to make an application to either the Federal Magistrates Court or Family Court seeking orders in relation to children and / or a property settlement.

Following separation and divorce, you should consider changing your Will. Divorce can have undesired effects with respect to your Will and remarriage will nullify your Will. At Duffield and Associates Solicitors we can assist you with making a new Will or updating your existing Will.