Family LawHow Long Does A Divorce Take

May 8, 2020
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In comparison to many legal jurisdictions around the world, Australia has a relatively simply process for getting divorced. For most applications, you will not even need to appear in person for the divorce to be granted. There are several factors that go into determining how long a divorce will take.

Filing for divorce – joint or solely

A joint application is where both parties agree to divorce, and both jointly prepare and execute the documents to be filed. A sole application is where only one party to the marriage is seeking to file for divorce.

Joint applications for divorce tend to be quicker. Sole applications take more time as there are greater requirements that need to be followed for the court to be satisfied that the divorce should be granted.
Delays to Divorce

There are several factors that can lead to delays in Divorces being granted.

a) Children

If you are applying for divorce solely and you have children under the age 18 years, then you will need to appear in person. If you have not prepared to address the court regarding the ongoing care of the child correctly you may find the application being delayed or possibly dismissed.

b) Serving the Divorce

When filing solely, you are required to serve the other party to the relationship as well as the information brochure “Marriage, Families and Separation”. In some circumstances it can be difficult to locate the person, and proof of service can be difficult to demonstrate. Failing to properly serve the other party may lead to the lengthy delays.

c) The proceedings being contested

It is very unusual in Australia for parties to contest a Divorce being granted. The most common reason that a divorce may be contested is where the parties disagree that the 12-month separation period required by law has been met. Filing inside this strict time frame can lead to the Divorce being dismissed,
Time Limits

It is critical to remember that you have 12 months from the date the divorce order becomes final to apply the courts for property settlement. If you fail to do so, you may forever lose your right to bring a claim for property settlement.

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