Divorce

There is no such thing as an easy divorce, but it can be made easier with the right lawyer on your side.

We understand the difficulty our clients are going through, and we believe one of the best things we can offer besides expert advice and strong representation is empathy. At Ascent Lawyers, we are committed to providing personalised, attentive representation that achieves the best outcome for you.

I am planning to divorce, what are the requirements?

In order for the Federal Circuit Court of Australia to process your application for divorce, you or your spouse must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Intend to live in Australia and consider it as permanent home
  • Be an Australian citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Normally live in Australia and have lived here for at least 12 months prior to your divorce application.

So long as your marriage is legally valid and it satisfies one of the above requirements, the Federal Circuit Court of Australia will have jurisdiction to process your divorce application.

Apart from the above, in order for the Court to grant a divorce order, you will have to satisfy the followings:

  • you and your spouse agree that the marriage has broken down irretrievably
  • you and your spouse have been married for 2 years
  • you and your spouse have separated for at least 12 months and 1 day

Should I make a sole application or joint application?

You can apply for a divorce by yourself (sole application) or together with your partner (joint application).

Sole Application

  • As the applicant, you must ensure the application documents are served on your spouse within a certain time frame and your spouse has acknowledged the receipt of documents. You will also have to provide an affidavit to confirm the same
  • Neither you nor your spouse is required to attend the court hearing if you have no children
  • You must attend the court hearing if you have children under 18 years old and you will be asked about the arrangement of your children

Joint Application

  • You and your spouse have to sign on the application form and do not need to serve documents on the other party
  • Neither you nor your spouse is required to attend the court hearing

What happens if my marriage is less than 2 years?

If your marriage is less than 2 years, you and your spouse are required to attend counselling in order to obtain a counselling certificate. If you are unable to attend these sessions, you will need to write an affidavit to the court before you can apply for a divorce.

Can I separate under the same roof?

If you have separated with your spouse under one roof, you need to provide an affidavit to support your divorce application.

In your affidavit, you need to prove that there has been a change in the marriage. You need to explain:

  • Change in sleeping arrangements
  • Reduction in shared activities or family outings
  • Decline in performing household chores for each other
  • Division of finances
  • Any other matters showing the marriage has broken down

What happens if I cannot locate my spouse?

If you cannot locate your spouse, you may apply for a sole divorce application. Normally you would need your spouse’s address to serve on the divorce documents. In such circumstances, you have to prove that you have taken all reasonable steps to locate them but failed. You will need to make a further application to seek a court dispense with service or for substituted service.

How long does it take for my divorce application to be finalized?

Before you submit a divorce application, you and your spouse must have been separated for at least 12 months and 1 day. After the divorce application was submitted, a Court hearing date will be allocated in a few months’ time.

On the day of the Court hearing, if the judge is satisfied that all the requirements are met in the divorce application, a divorce order will be granted and become effective after 1 month and 1 day.

If I was married overseas, can I still get divorced in Australia?

It does not matter if you were married overseas. You can get divorced in Australia so long as you satisfy any one of the following requirements:

  • Intend to live in Australia and consider it as permanent home
  • Be an Australian citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Normally live in Australia and have lived here for at least 12 months prior to your divorce application

If your marriage certificate is not in English, you are required to provide a translated version.

Send us a message

We are here to help