What is Divorce?
Marriages do end. Sadly, it happens all the time. And with close to half of all marriages in Australia ending in divorce these days (and similar statistics for defacto relationships), more and more Australian adults are themselves experiencing the heartbreak that flows from relationship breakdown. Put very simply, divorce is the administrative process taken to dissolve a marriage in the eyes of the law.
How long does a Divorce take?
In order to apply for divorce, partners must be separated for a period of at least 12 months. If there is a period of failed reconciliation for three months or more, the 12-month separation restarts. From applying for a divorce to finalising one, typically takes at least four-six months.
Why do I need a lawyer?
Every separating family has only two main legal issues to finalise:
- Matters relating to the parenting of children; and
- the division of the personal wealth and income that exists at the end of a relationship.
A divorce is a formal agreement in relation to those two legal issues. And we can help. Our family lawyers deal with divorce and other family law matters.
Should I do it myself?
No. You really shouldn’t.
While there are options available to all separating families to do their own divorce or to make use of an online divorce settlement service, our advice (of course) is to use a lawyer to assist in the drawing up of your formal agreement. Divorce and family law matters are emotional matters. They require an objective eye.
Separating families may feel sadness, fear, grief, loss, anxiety, anger – sometimes all in one day! Any decisions that are made when you are in this highly-charged, emotional state are often not well considered and may be regretted later. For that reason alone, you should let us help.
While you are focused on the NOW, we are focused on the FOREVER.
How we help – what are our THREE goals?
1. To keep separating families out of the Court process entirely
Court battles over issues relating to children and financial matters can be lengthy and damaging. You really don’t want a third person telling you how much time you will spend with your children or how much money you will keep. Most separating families are able to reach a formal agreement regarding their divorce and family law matter without venturing into the Family Courts. We will show you the range of options available to you (outside the Family Court process).
2. To help you maintain a cooperative relationship with your children and former spouse
You may be separating from one another but if you have children, you will (like it or not) be forever connected to your former spouse. It just makes sense to aim for harmony. You don’t have to like it, but you should strive for it. Peace and harmony.
3. To help you to move forward to a positive and fulfilling life
You may feel as if you have taken up residence on the local rollercoaster, true story. You haven’t. Divorce is a significant grief process (second only to the loss of a loved one, incidentally) and you are going to feel a range of emotions, daily. Be very kind to yourself. Read, read & read more. About self-care, about grief, about happy things. Teach yourself how to grieve. And remember this: It will get better. It has to.
The QLD Government has very helpful Fact Sheets regarding Separation & Divorce.
And the Australian Government’s Resources are fabulous too.