A Guide On Australian Family Law

29 August 2022
 Categories: Law, Blog


The Australian Family Law aims to resolve issues that arise from family relationships. However, most people do not comprehend the various aspects of the Family Law Act. The blog below explains some of the essential features of the act. 

Marital Contracts 

In Australia, couples can draft contracts to determine how they can settle their marriage affairs in case of divorce. These contracts can be drafted before the marriage (prenuptial) or after the union (postnuptial). There are specific laws that determine how to draw these agreements. For instance, you can only use the contracts to determine marital property division. As such, you cannot use them to control your spouse's behaviour or decisions during the marriage. Moreover, couples getting into these agreements should have sufficient time to evaluate the paperwork. They should also receive independent legal advice before signing these contracts. 


Australia has straightforward divorce criteria. First, you need to prove to the courts that your union is irretrievably broken. The legal standard is that you should be separated for at least a year. The divorce can either be filed separately or jointly at a Family Court. If both parties agree to divorce, the court asks them to attend a mandatory session to discuss how they will raise their kids. The secret is to have a parental agreement with your spouse. The benefits of this agreement are that it is flexible and allows you to raise your kids without any conflict. 

If you have joint property, you need a property settlement agreement to divide debts and assets with your partner. You can divide assets however you please. However, if you cannot agree, the court determines a reasonable way to share the assets between the two parties. 

Child Custody 

Sometimes, you might be uncomfortable leaving your kids with your spouse. It is especially so if they are violent, abusive, or a drug addict. If this is the case, your family lawyer files a custody application at the Family Court. The court evaluates your submission and examines the child's best interest in making a ruling. If the child is not at significant risk, the court could allow supervised visitation to ensure they grow with the love of both parents. However, the courts could award you sole custody if your spouse is likely to harm the child. In some cases, a sole custody ruling is reversible if the other party proves they have changed their ways. 

For more information about family law, reach out to a local solicitor.