Divorce is considered a formal way of ending a marriage; it is not the same as property settlement and parenting arrangements after a marriage breakdown. You do not require to be divorced unless you want to marry again. But if you stay married, your legal obligations may be affected.
This is why obtaining legal advice from divorce lawyers Perth WA is necessary if you do not know what to do. If you want to get a divorce from your former spouse, you need to show that your marriage has ended and that both of you have been separated for a year. In this guide, you will learn about the legal ways to file for a divorce in Australia.
Can You Get a Divorce?
If you want to apply for divorce in Australia, you must ensure that you remain separated for at least a year.
Your partner also needs to fulfill these criteria:
- To be an Australian citizen
- To live in Australia permanently
- Lived normally in Australia for around a year before filing for divorce.
If you married outside of Australia, you could apply for divorce in Australia till you meet the criteria above. If your marriage did not complete two years, you might have to attend counselling with a family member. You can also file a counselling certificate or obtain permission from an Australian court to apply for a divorce without having the certificate.
The term ‘separation’ means to live separately from one another. This decision can be mutually decided or unilaterally initiated by both partners. If you want to prove that your marriage has broken down and needs a divorce, you must show that you and your partner have separated for a year.
It is not necessary that you need to live on separate roofs to prove that you have been separated. There are certain criteria where it is possible for you to live separated under a single roof. You may need advice from separation lawyers Perth if you are living separated under a roof.
Preparing Your Documents
If you want to make your divorce application, you will need to have a visa, scanner, printer or MasterCard. You can purchase a prepaid debit card via Australia post if you do not have access to a credit card.
There are some relevant documents that you must file along with your divorce application. You must file a copy of the marriage certificate, and you may need to have access to other documents based on your situation. You can provide copies of the following documents:
- A ceremonial certificate if you married in Australia
- Birth, Death and Marriage certificates.
Some situations where you may need to have additional documents are as follows:
- You remained separated under a single roof
- Your marriage certificate is not in English
- You depend on visa residency needs or your Australian citizenship
- Your marriage did not last even two years.
Completing Divorce Applications on the Ecourts Portal of Australia
After preparing your documents for the divorce application, you can register for the eCourts portal. After you register and sign in, you must do the following:
- You must select ‘Start a new file’. If you reside in Western Australia, you can select the Family Court of Western Australia.
- After that, you must complete Parts A to F of the online form. As you move through the application, you can receive help. You can also save any part of the application as you proceed and select ‘print preview’ to read the application.
- After this, you can upload the required documents.
- After you are satisfied, you can lock your application and continue.
Printing and Signing the Application
The next step in the divorce application process is to print a copy of your application and an Affidavit of the eFiling. You must swear and sign in before it is witnessed by an authority that is mostly a lawyer or a Justice of the Peace.
There is enough information on documents being sworn in on the affidavit page. Parties are usually advised that witnesses like a teacher, pharmacist and police officer are not authorised. They either need to be a Justice of the peace or a renowned lawyer.
When filing a joint application, you and your partner must swear the affidavit. After it is sworn, you must scan and upload the copy to the online portal.
How Do You Apply?
You will need to apply to the Federal Circuit and Australia’s Family Court for a divorce. If you live in Western Australia, you need to apply to Western Australia’s Family court. The website of the Family law court has information, application kits and fact sheets to guide you in the process.
You can also opt for a joint application or a sole application. The need to attend a court will depend on whether your application is solo or joint and if there are children under the age of 18. The best divorce lawyers in Perth can help you if you would like to know more about this.
If you wish to apply for a divorce online, the following websites can help you: Family Court of Western Australia and Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia. There are certain fees that you must pay when applying for a divorce; you can find more information about this on the websites of Family law courts.
Compared to the other laws in the country, family law in Australia also matters, and it can be hard to provide accurate information regarding the timeframe for the grant of a divorce. In the majority of the cases, you will find that the divorce order takes around a month and a day to come into effect.
The divorce case proceeds after the Australian court makes orders. But you need to remember that the court may not make an order at the first hearing, and you may need to provide more information to them.
If you have been separated from your partner for quite some time and need to file for a divorce, the best divorce lawyers in Perth can help you. They are experts in this field and can help you know about the legal process of divorce in Australia; you will also know what documents you need to provide to obtain a divorce from your former partner successfully.