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De Facto Relationship

De Facto Relationships

Amelia Cox a De Facto Relationship Lawyers has extensive experience in dealing with de facto relationship separation. Amelia’s down to earth and caring approach to Family Law immediately puts her clients at ease.

Call Amelia now on 1800 891 691 for your initial family law consultation.

Family Lawyer Central Coast

Am I in a de facto relationship?

Under the Family Law Act 1975, a party is in a de facto relationship if they meet the following criteria:

  1. They are not legally married;
  2. They are not related by family; and
  3. Having regard to the circumstances of their relationship, they are a couple living together on a “genuine domestic basis” .

A de facto relationship can exist between two people of the same or opposite sex. Further, a de facto relationship can still exist if your spouse is married to another person!

To determine whether or not a couple has been living together on a “genuine domestic basis” the Court will consider the following factors:

  • the duration of the relationship
  • the nature and extent of a couple’s common residence;
  • whether a sexual relationship exists;
  • the degree of financial dependence or interdependence, and any arrangements for financial support, between a couple;
  • the ownership, use and acquisition of property;
  • the degree of mutual commitment to a shared life;
  • whether the relationship is or was registered under a prescribed law of a State or Territory as a prescribed kind of relationship;
  • the care and support of children;
  • the reputation and public aspects of the relationship.

The determination of the existence of a de facto relationship can be complex. No particularly finding of any of the factors listed above is regarded as necessary to prove the existence of a de facto relationship. Rather, the consideration of the above factors is simply used to assist the Court to make a determination of whether two people are living together on a genuine domestic basis.

No, the Family Law Act 1975 and Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia deals with family law parenting (child custody) issues in the same way whether you are married or de facto.

Again, de facto couples will be treated the same as married couples. Since 1 March 2009, separated de facto couples have been able to apply to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia to have their financial issues determined the same way as married couples.

As a party to a de facto relationship, you have 2 years from the date of your separation to apply to the Court for family law property settlement orders. Any application made outside this time limit must seek special permission from the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.

To commence de facto property settlement Court proceedings, you must meet all of the following criteria:

  1. You were in a genuine de facto relationship with your former partner which has broken down;
  2. That you meet one of the following gateway criteria:
    1. That you have been in a relationship for at least two years;
    2. That there is a child of your relationship;
    3. That your relationship is or was registered under a prescribed law of the relevant State or Territory; or
    4. You made significant financial and/or non-financial contributions and the failure to make property adjustment orders would result in a serious injustice.
  3. You have a geographical connection to a participating jurisdiction; and
  4. Your relationship broke down after 1 March 2009 (or after 1 July 2010 if you have a geographical connection to South Australia only); although you may be able to apply to the courts if your relationship broke down prior to the date applicable to your state.

Call Brazel Moore Family Lawyers Central Coast now for assistance with the breakdown of your de facto relationship.

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