De Facto Relationships

De facto couples now have identical rights to married couples.

A de facto relationship exists if a couple lives together on a domestic basis.  A de facto relationship can exist even if one of the parties is still married to somebody else.

Since the 2009 amendments to the Family Law Act, de facto couples (including same sex couples) have the same rights as if married.  You obviously don’t need a divorce.  The law is also applied in the same way for matters involving children.

To establish a de facto relationship as distinct from just any relationship you need to have lived together

AND just ONE of the following:

  • the relationship existed for at least two years
  • a child;
  • a substantial financial or personal contributions to the relationship to the extent that it would be unjust if they were not compensated in some way
  • registration of the relationship
  • satisfy the court that there is an exception such that there would be hardship caused to a person if the court didn’t make an order

Just Family Law can advise you on your rights as a de facto couple, including the distribution of property, spousal maintenance, and children’s issues.  We will look at the details of your particular situation and help you reach an outcome that is the best achievable in your unique circumstances.