A divorce is the legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body. Here in Australia, the Federal Circuit Court of Australia has the jurisdiction or power to deal with dissolution of your marriage (i.e. divorce). This is dealt with under the Family Law Act 1975.
A divorce is not the same thing as a property settlement. A divorce is the end of your legal marriage. A property settlement divides the property pool between you and your spouse following a separation or divorce.
There are a number of things that you should be able to satisfy the Court before they will grant you a divorce, these being:
- That you and your spouse have lived separately and apart for at least 12 months; and
- That there is no reasonable likelihood of resuming married life.
If you and your husband have lived together in the same residence but as a separated couple, you are still able to apply for a divorce, you will however need to provide an additional document as part of your application.
VM Family Law can assist you in determining whether you would be eligible to apply for a divorce.
You can apply for a divorce:
- On your own; or
- As a joint application.
VM Family Law can assist you in completing your Application for a Divorce or you are able to complete an Application yourself. The Family Court website contains useful information and a kit to assist you in preparing an application.
In Australia there is a no-fault divorce system, therefore the Court does not need to consider why the marriage has ended. The Court only needs to be satisfied that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.
If you have children under the age of 18, the Court is only able to grant you a divorce if you can establish that property arrangements have been made for the care of the children. This does not mean that there need to be parenting court orders in place.
There is a filing fee for divorce applications and current details are available on the Family Court Website. There are also certain exemptions that you can apply for, if eligible.