Separation and Divorce are different. Separation occurs when a couple decide, and communicate, that they no longer wish to be a couple. Divorce can occur 12 months after separation but is not compulsory.
When people separate, they often wonder whether they should see a lawyer. The answer is ‘yes’. People can reach agreement without legal assistance, but it is important to consult with a specialised family lawyer to make an informed decision who can provide you with clarity and confidence about your options and entitlements.
Specialised Family Lawyers can assist with:
Separation and family breakdowns can be difficult, especially when children are involved. Many people are unaware of their entitlements under the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) “the Act” and the processes available to assist them.
Complications can arise if domestic violence is an issue or if a party is disadvantaged, for whatever reason. Specialised family lawyers can provide the right care and knowledge to assist you. Family lawyers can provide specialised and independent advice, separating the emotional aspects of the separation from the legal issues.
Properly documenting an agreement on separation
If you have reached an agreement with your partner or spouse after separation it is vital to properly document that agreement, so it is legally binding. When agreements are not documented correctly there is a risk the agreement will not be binding or is ‘overturned’, which can enable the other party to have a ‘second bite of the cherry’. A specialised family lawyer can assist you with documenting a legally binding agreement.
De Facto partners
When couples separate, the Family Law Act provides guidance as to how separated couples should divide their assets and liabilities and make arrangements for their children. The Act applies when married couples separate and also when de facto partners separate.
If you have separated, or are considering separation, it is wise to obtain advice from specialised family lawyers.
If you are considering engaging a family lawyer for your assistance, Dorter Family Lawyers and Mediators are expert Family Lawyers who specialise in all areas of family law and mediation and can assist you. We can be contacted on (02) 9929 8840.