A divorce is a major life event, and we understand that it can be a difficult process even for couples who are having an amicable split. At Unified Lawyers, we take your emotional and financial needs into account. Our divorce lawyers in Sydney have the experience, skill, and compassion you need to get through your family law case.
Cost-Effective Legal Service with Flexible Billing
We know that divorce is hard enough, and we don’t want you to be bogged down with exorbitant legal fees and strict billing guidelines. Therefore, our affordable Parramatta lawyers will help you by providing legal advice and services for everything from reaching a property settlement to completing the divorce process.
Simply ask your Sydney divorce attorney about our flexible billing plans, and we’ll work with you to make it possible for you to have proper legal representation.
Filing Your Divorce Application
Before you can submit your application for divorce to the Federal Circuit Court, you must meet the divorce law requirements set in place by Family Law Act 1975. Our divorce lawyers in Sydney will help you every step of the way with our cost-effective legal services.
Divorce law states that you must be separated for at least 12 months before filing your divorce application. Please note that you do not necessarily have to live in separate places to make this claim.
The lead up to separation and divorce cases can leave people without many viable financial options, so it is actually common for former couples to retain the same address before filing for divorce even though they’re not actually together anymore.
Before a divorce can be granted, you will need to be able to prove to the Federal Circuit Court that you have a financial agreement in place. This is one of the many factors that your cost-effective family law divorce attorney can help you with.
What’s the Difference between Separation and Divorce?
For financial reasons, some people choose to work with separation lawyers in Sydney instead of submitting an application for divorce. In legal terms, a couple that goes through a separation is still married but is no longer together. If you change your mind, this process must last a year or longer before you will be eligible to begin filing for divorce.
If you choose not to complete the final step in the legal process, you can work with our Sydney separation lawyers to ensure that you protect yourself as well as possible. For example, you will be required to inform applicable agencies about your separation, including the Child Support Agency and Medicare.
One prime reason that it’s important to work with a separation lawyer when a divorce isn’t planned is to protect the distribution of your assets. Right now, your spouse may be the main beneficiary of everything you own. If you don’t want this to happen, be sure to talk to us about your legal options.
Spousal Maintenance Binding Financial Agreement
Spousal maintenance may be granted to one member of a divorced couple. If the court orders one person to pay the other spousal maintenance, this becomes a binding financial agreement that must be met.
Spousal maintenance is usually provided as part of the divorce order when one party will be unable to adequately take care of themselves without financial assistance. Your marriage certificate will provide verification for the court regarding how long you were married.
What Factors Impact Spousal Maintenance?
If you believe that spousal maintenance should be part of your divorce order, you need to be aware that many factors will be considered such as:
- Your age
- Your ability to work
- Your health
- Your existing income, financial and property resources
- Whether or not the marriage had any impact on your ability to work
- The court’s determination of a suitable standard of living
- Who is getting custody of the children (if applicable)
If you are granted spousal maintenance, please note that it can be taken away if you get remarried. Also, be aware that you can file for spousal maintenance up to 12 months after your divorce order is finalised.
Child Support Family Court Cases in Sydney NSW and Sydney CBD
Child support is often a big part of Family Court divorce proceedings. The Australian government provides many options for dealing with child support cases. Our law firm can help you assess the possibilities and make a decision before your divorce hearing.
If you and your ex can come to mutually agreeable terms, you don’t have to get the Australian Department of Human Services involved. Instead, you’ll simply write up a financial agreement for child support and take care of everything privately.
File for an Assessment
If you’re unwilling to self-manage child support, you can apply for an assessment. The Australian Department of Human Services will then tell you and your ex how child support payments must be handled.
Make a Limited Child Support Agreement
This agreement between both parties will stay active until both parties ask for it to end. Alternatively, one party can request the agreement to end after more than three years or if the notional assessment variance exceeds 15 percent.
Make a Binding Child Support Agreement
In a binding agreement, both parties agree to a specific amount. This is similar to self-management, but it involves paperwork being filed with the Australian Department of Human Services.
Court Ordered Child Support
In some instances, Family Court or the Federal Circuit Court may order child management. For example, a child 18 or older who is handicapped or currently getting an advanced education may be eligible for continued child support payments.
Filing a Consent Order
After you come to an agreement regarding child support, child custody, and spousal maintenance, you’ll need to apply for consent orders. Once the court agrees to your written agreements, they’ll approve each applicable consent order.
Consent orders are commonly used for parenting arrangements, so they are sometimes referred to as parenting orders. Your Sydney family lawyer will help you properly fill out and file every necessary consent order.
Settling Property Disputes in Sydney NSW and Sydney CBD
Unfortunately, you cannot be granted a divorce until all of your financial matters have been settled. Sometimes, a property dispute or other issue backs up the process, but our law firm is ready to help speed everything up!
A family law case to deal with unresolved financial matters may become part of your divorce proceedings. Your family law divorce attorney will advise you about your rights and make it easier to reach a satisfactory financial agreement, including a property settlement.
Keep in mind that legal representation is especially important during family law, child support and divorce cases because your emotions may understandably run high. With our legal representation on your side, your family court experience will go much more smoothly.
Prenuptial Agreements and Family Law
A prenuptial agreement can help solve many litigation issues and speed up your dispute resolution. Therefore, if you’re currently engaged to be married, you may want to work with a marriage lawyer to help you put a prenup together.
Unfortunately, a prenuptial agreement is never a guarantee. During the divorce hearing, it’s possible that part of the prenup, or even the entire agreement, will be set aside by the Family Court.
If you’re not sure whether or not an existing prenuptial agreement is likely to be adhered to during divorce proceedings, contact our team of Sydney divorce lawyers for legal advice. We cannot make any guarantees about what the court will do, but we can use our extensive legal experience to help put you on the right track.
Is Collaborative Law Right for You?
Are you having a relatively amicable divorce and want to avoid going through the typical legal process? Collaborative law provides another option, and our divorce attorneys can assist you through this form of alternative dispute resolution.
Before you can move forward with a collaborative law divorce case, a member of our team will conduct an interview to help make sure that this is the right path for you. Please note that you will be required to be present at all meetings during a collaborative law case, which may be hard for people who are dealing with a difficult divorce.
Impact of Criminal Law Case on Divorce Proceedings
In Australia, we have no-fault divorces. In other words, even if your spouse cheats on you, you’re not going to be able to turn the case into a criminal issue. However, if your spouse is currently involved in a separate criminal law case, you can use that to your advantage when dealing with child custody. Be sure to let our Parramatta lawyer know if there’s any current or previous criminal case we should be aware of.
Start the Divorce Process Today
Divorce isn’t pretty, but sometimes, it’s necessary. If you’ve been separated from your spouse for 12 months and cannot reconcile the relationship, it’s time to contact our qualified team of attorneys. Your Sydney family lawyer can assist you throughout the entire separation and divorce process.
Please bring your marriage certificate and any other applicable paperwork with you to our initial meeting. We cannot heal the rift between you and your ex, but we can provide valuable legal advice that will make the divorce go as smoothly as possible.