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Family Law De Facto Property Settlement Melbourne

The new Commonwealth Law for de facto partners applies to couple separated after 1st March 2009 and enforced from 1st July 2010. This pathbreaking law puts domestic issues faced by de facto partners like separation, property sharing, spousal maintenance, child care into Family Law Act of 1975. This law gives equal rights to de facto relationships as legally married couple in Australia. Under this law, the de facto partners can approach Federal Circuit Court and Family Courts of Australia for above-mentioned redressals.

As per the law, the following eligibility criteria must be met before making claim for spousal maintenance and property settlement:

  1. The de facto relationship should be at least 2 years old.
  2. Or, there is a child of this relationship.
  3. Or, any one of the partners has made a substantial contribution to the relationship, either financial or non-financial and is injustice if the court doesn’t order for property settlement. In this case, the court can still pass verdict for property sharing and spousal maintenance even if the de facto relationship hasn’t existed for 2 years.
  4. Or, the de facto partners have registered their relationship under respective state/ territory law.

Time within which application should be made:

The separating de facto partner should file an application for property settlement and spousal maintenance within 2 years of the relationship breakdown.

If the application is made after 2 years of de facto relationship breakdown, the case should be supported by below factors:

  1. The survival would be hard to either the separated partner or the child if property settlement orders are not given.
  2. The separated partner is not making sustainable income at the end of the 2-year period and thus applied for spousal maintenance.

De facto partners can claim: property share, spousal maintenance and superannuation splitting under family law act of 1975.

These claims can be applied for in either of the courts of: Family Court or Federal Circuit Court.

The partners can prepare a Binding Financial Agreement anytime during their relationship, with a forethinking; if their de facto relationship breaks down, they would abide by the financial agreement thus prepared.

You can seek Consent Orders from court to formalize the agreement so that it becomes binding on both the partners. And that means your stamp duty is exempted under family law act if you transfer or sell the vehicle or property.

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