Family Law Solicitors
Just Family Law are Family Law Solicitors dedicated to providing advice in all aspects of family law. The compassion and integrity of the family law solicitors at Just Family Law together with our extensive experience in family law, will leave you comfortable and confident throughout the process of separation, divorce and family law issues including property and financial settlement as well as arrangements for your children.
To legally end your marriage, a court order is required. The divorce application itself is a simple document. It is the repercussions of this document has on other aspects of your life that people can fail to consider.
To apply for a divorce, you must have been separated from your spouse for a period of twelve months. During this time, you can still be living together however you will be required to provide additional evidence to the Court to prove your separation.
Once the application is filed, anyone other than you must personally hand your spouse the court documents 28 days before the divorce hearing. If they refuse to accept the documentation, they can be placed on the ground in their presence. When the divorce application is approved, the Court will order the termination of your marriage to be effective after a further one month and one day.
If you and your spouse have children under the age of 18, a short hearing will be held whereby a court officer will check there is a proper arrangement in place to care for the children.
Filing for divorce is only one part of the process when ending your marriage. There are other things to consider, including:
• Property settlement and asset division;
• Updating your will;
• Childrens Arrangements.
Property & Financial Settlement
Separation not only affects your emotional well being but also your financial well being. Property settlement and asset division are required for separated couples to end their financial relationship. Without doing so, your former spouse still has a degree of control and it will be harder to move on to the next stage of your life. Resolving a financial dispute requires skill, experience and expert knowledge.
When dividing assets between yourself and former spouse, you inevitably end up with a reduced income and less than what you previously had. At Just Family Law, our family law solicitors are experts in property settlements and asset division.
The law seeks to ensure any financial settlement between the parties is fair, and no two cases are the same. The law considers the parties contributions and needs, regardless of whose name the assets and liabilities are in. In most cases, the parties must first attempt to reach an agreement before proceeding to Court. By engaging Just Family Law to assist with this, we are able to advocate on your behalf and predict what a Court is likely to consider fair based on our vast experience.
The need for specialist advice from our family law solicitors is particularly important when:
- Inheritances form a large part of the assets available;
- The other side is stubborn/spiteful/not over it/dishonest/all of the above;
- There is a business to be valued;
- Parents of one spouse have contributed more ie provided money, real estate, care of children, private school fees;
- Assets controlled in inappropriate persons names or trusts;
- Third party disputes.
Taking your dispute to Court means allowing the Judge to divide all of your respective assets, liabilities and financial resources in a fair way according to the law. The Court will insist you try mediation before a final hearing is held. For example, if there is a family home, it must be sold, or one party must buy the other out. We pride ourselves on providing honest and transparent advice as to which option is more viable for you.
Decision making for the best interests of your children can be difficult while trying to come to terms with the breakdown of a marriage or de facto relationship. It is not easy to look out for your children’s future when you are in the midst of trying to secure your own future without the support of a life partner.
Even reasonably amicable parents however can disagree about what is best for their children and we can advise what objective experts and judges are likely to think of your situation, before you get that far. Even successful parents might be arguing over:
- Parenting styles
- Overnight times; nights per fortnights
- Practicalities of change overs
- Private schooling
- Christmas, birthdays, school holidays.
These matters are usually resolved out of court but we have acted for parents in difficult situations involving the particular difficulties of:
- Stubborn and unrealistic spouses
- Vengeful and abusive parents
- Schooling after separation
- Mental illness
- Drug and alcohol abuse.
Decisions about the amount of time children spend with each parent probably are the hardest of all. We have had experience in helping parents with many aspects of the care of their children including, but not limited to, their residence, schooling, religious upbringing, medical responsibility, communication and protection from harm.
The Family Law Act places great emphasis on making sure that children continue to have a strong and meaningful relationship with each of their parents. Amendments made to that Act in recent years have caused a shift in the approach that Judges take where parents can’t agree between themselves.
Early and informed decisions about the proposals you make for the care of your children may make the difference between experiencing years of acrimony versus creating a healthy positive environment for the growth and well being of your children.
Resolution in most cases is attempted first through mediation. If this proves unsuccessful, you will be issued with a certificate to progress the dispute to Court. By bringing the case to Court, you are granting the Judge final jurisdiction in parenting orders. Documentation must be filed in order to issue proceedings, and engaging a skilled Family Lawyer is essential to ensure they are prepared and filed correctly and promptly.
From the onset of every case, we will analyse the situation and risks from each party and then predict the likely outcome. We are transparent in our approach and will always tell you what you need to hear so you are equipped to make an informed decision moving forward. Decisions made in the Family Court are difficult to appeal, therefore having an expert family law solicitor in your corner from the beginning is vital.
Our practice: Why should I choose Just Family Law?
- Independently approved Accredited Specialist – Law Institute of Victoria
- More than 25 years experience
- All solicitors and all staff just do Family law, all the time
- We realise and care that this is a difficult and sensitive time but…
- We are commercially minded to get the job done
Call 03 9793 7888.