Platinum Family Lawyers
If you’re reading the material on our webpage chances are either you or a loved one are going through the stress and heartache associated with the breakdown of a relationship. Breaking up is never easy, often there are delicate issues relating to property division or parenting that you are anxious to sort out. Our family lawyers deal with these issues every day.
Our family lawyers have the experience and resources to handle what might be the greatest challenge of your life to date.
If you have been separated for over 12 months you may be eligible to file for a divorce. You may have heard that it is possible to be separated yet still live under the same roof, this is true, and we invite you to call one of our family lawyers to discuss whether this applies to you.
You can apply for a divorce jointly or together with your partner. The process differs slightly so it is important to speak to one of our family lawyers.
(b) Parenting Disputes
Parenting disputes are almost always a dramatic and emotional affair. It is hard to imagine anything more difficult than a dispute over a child with the person that helped bring your child into this world. Rest assured that your child has a right to a meaningful relationship with you.
It is important to get proper legal advice early to know where you stand.
Be sure of where you stand, call a Platinum Family Lawyer Sydney on (02) 8084 2764.
(c) Parenting Consent Orders
If you feel as though your relationship with your former partner is well enough our advice is to try and exhaust all avenues of trying to find a parenting solution among yourselves. Fighting over your child in court, is heart breaking and expensive, and often it is your child who bears the brunt of this ordeal. If you have an agreed parenting solution, and you want us to ensure you that it’s legally enforceable, then you should ask one of our family lawyers to draft you a set of parenting consent orders.
(d) Property Disputes
The division of the assets of the marriage is a very sensitive and delicate issue for most.
Have you worked your whole life, and do not have any substantial claim to your money?
Have you devoted your entire life to the family and the home and are worried what will you do in the future? Or
Do you simply want to know what you are entitled to?
Then it is important that you speak to a family lawyer who will guide you through the process that the court uses when dividing marital assets.
(e) Binding Financial Agreements/Property Consent Orders
If you have reached an agreement regarding the settlement of your property affairs then you are one of the fortunate ones who do not need to go to court. Signing a binding financial agreement or property consent orders ensures that your agreed division of your assets is legally enforceable.
Writing it all down on paper you and signing is more often than not insufficient, strict legal requirements apply before these documents become legally enforceable.
Speak to one of our family lawyers who will promptly prepare all the documents you need to finalize your property affairs.
We offer prompt and efficient resolution of family law disputes in the following areas:
- Divorce and Separation
- De facto relationships
- Property Settlements
- Binding Financial Agreements and Consent Orders
- Parenting and Care Arrangements;
- Urgent family law applications; and
- Achieving a settlement without going to Court
If a settlement cannot be achieved outside of court, we have the knowledge and experience to provide strong litigation management and representation in the court process to contain costs and secure an appropriate outcome.
Platinum Family Lawyers Sydney understand the pain and hardship associated with Family Law – but we still focus on getting the best possible result.
Property settlement is the process of dividing the matrimonial asset pool between parties of a marriage. The property settlement process has varied outcomes depending on your relationship type, income, assets and liabilities.
A breakdown of a relationship requires the distribution of the property the parties acquired and shared during the relationship.
The property needs to be carefully identified and valued so that there is a comprehensive list to form the basis for discussion. Apart from that the law requires an examination of the contributions of the parties towards the acquisition, development and maintenance of the property. The contribution can be financial or non-financial. The property can include real estate, shares, bank accounts, superannuation and businesses.
Our lawyers are experienced in analyzing and compiling the necessary information including obtaining valuations of the various items, including real estate and businesses.
After the property is identified and valued and the contributions assessed, regard must then be had to the respective financial viability and circumstances of the parties and finally any adjustment made to ensure a fair outcome.
We encourage private settlement, through the use of alternative dispute resolution processes if necessary.
If agreement is reached then this can be reflected in terms of settlement filed in the court and the obtaining of consent orders which give finality to the process.
If agreement cannot be reached then our skilled litigators will see your case through the court system to a successful conclusion.
Financial agreements can also be entered into at any time prior to, during or at the end of a marriage.
A Financial Agreement entered into prior to a marriage is known as Pre-nuptial Agreement.
Binding Financial Agreements/Arrangements
Often parties separate on speaking terms and both parties are keen to settle their financial situation as quickly and efficiently as possible. The Family Law Act provides that parties may enter into a Binding Financial Agreement without embarking on costly and stressful court proceedings.
A binding financial agreement may be made before (commonly known as a prenuptial agreement, or prenup), during or after marriage (but within 12 months of obtaining a divorce). The courts can make orders to enforce a binding financial agreement. There are a number of formal requirements which have to be met and if these are not then it is unenforceable.
Provided they have been validly executed, a party must apply to the court if they are not happy with the Binding Financial Agreement. The courts are reluctant to get involved, and will normally refuse to set aside a Binding Financial Agreement unless the agreement was obtained by fraud or there has been a material change in circumstances.
The court’s paramount consideration when dealing with parenting matters is the best interests of the child. The best interests of the child are achieved by ensuring the child is protected from harm and given the opportunity to pursue a meaningful relationship with both parents.
Recent changes to the law require the court to consider equal shared parental responsibility and equal time with the child. However, not everyone’s personal circumstances allow for the child to spend equal time with each parent.
In parenting matters the courts are often asked to deal with the following issues:
Often parents have separated but are still on talking terms and may have an agreed parenting plan. The Family Law Act allows parents to file consent orders in court without going through costly and emotionally draining court proceedings. Once filed, consent orders are binding and serious penalties may apply to parents who breach them.
Our family lawyers have experience in quickly and efficiently drafting consent orders to suit the needs of its clients.
For any family law matter, contact Platinum Family Lawyers Sydney today on (02) 8084 2764.
Family Law Parenting Emergencies
Platinum Family Lawyers Sydney have extensive experience dealing with the following queries from traumatized parents:
- The other parent has failed to return my child;
- I am worried that the other parent will remove my child from Australia;
- The other parent has relocated and I have no idea where they are;
- I am meant to spend time with the child but the other parent refuses to make the child available;
- My child is gone and I am worried about their safety.
At times parents may have already contacted your local police who unfortunately may not be able to assist without a sealed court order.
If you are faced with any of the above terrifying scenarios, it is important to contact an experienced family lawyer promptly. Time is of the essence, the right documents must be prepared quickly and efficiently.
We will organize an urgent appointment and prepare all the necessary court documents efficiently and effectively.
Our family lawyers will take immediate action such as the following:
1. Filing and obtaining an urgent recovery order– In circumstances where a child has been removed from a parent, or a parent has failed to return a child our family lawyers will seek an urgent recovery order. Often local police will advise that they have no authority to assist until a recovery order is obtained. Essentially the court will be asked to make an order which will enable local police to physically take custody of the child and return the child. In the most serious circumstances our family lawyers have reunited parents with their children within 48 hours of being instructed;
2. Arrange for the child to be placed on the airport watch list– Once a child is removed from Australia, a parents ability to recover the child is severely restricted. There are countries where unfortunately there may be nothing a parent can do. However, if our family lawyers are contacted early enough they can arrange to have the child placed on the airport watch list. Essentially an airport watch list ensures that a child is unable to leave any airport in Australia without being removed or a further court order. Owing the seriousness of the situation, it is possible to make such arrangements outside business hours. In the most serious circumstances our family lawyers have managed to arrange for a child to be placed on the airport watch list within 24 hours of being instructed;
3. Filing and obtaining an urgent location order At times a parent relocates interstate or simply disappears off the face of the earth’ with the child. The parent may have attempted contacting the other parent, the school, the police, family and friends all to no avail. A location order essentially is an order authorizing government agencies to release information to enable you to locate the parent and child. Normally the child would have enrolled in a new school or had their Centrelink details updated by the other parent, and it is this information that the location order targets. Armed with this information further family law action can be taken;
4. File an urgent contravention application– Often parents refuse to make a child available to spend time with the other parent. The courts do not look too kindly on parents who refuse to abide by existing family law orders, and it is important to bring such conduct to our family lawyers’ attention.
Counselling and Dispute Resolution
There is a strong emphasis on family dispute resolution in the Family Law Act. In fact, at times you are unable to file court proceedings without first giving family dispute resolution a try. Disputes Resolution may include counselling, mediation or negotiation and is one of the best ways to settle a dispute.
By attaining good legal representation, you may be able to reach common ground and settle your dispute without the need to go to court, saving you both time and money.
De Facto Relationships (including same sex relationships)
A de facto relationship is one where 2 people, not married, are living together in a genuine domestic basis. They can be opposite or same sex.
With respect to parenting matters the law does not differentiate between married parties and parties that are not married. However, the manner in which the court deals with property matters is different.
What constitutes a de facto relationship involves considering all the circumstances including:
- the duration of the relationship
- the nature and extent of their common residence
- whether a sexual relationship exists
- the degree of financial dependence or interdependence, and any arrangements for financial support, between them
- the ownership, use and acquisition of their property
- their degree of mutual commitment to a shared life
- whether the relationship has been registered, in a State or Territory with laws for the registration of relationships
- the care and support of children, and
- the reputation and public aspects of their relationship.
Unlike married people these relationships also encompass same-sex relationships and depending upon the nature of it there may or may not be children who have to be cared for. Despite this, de facto partnerships bear very little similarity to marriage at law.
The new law applies to relationships which have broken down since 1 March 2009.
Current State laws apply to relationships which have broken down prior to that date.
An application under the new law must be made within 2 years of the separation. A court may extend that time in limited circumstances.
The new laws provide for de facto couples, when they separate, to obtain property settlements on the principles that currently apply under the Family Law Act 1975 to married couples.
This is a change from the current laws that apply to de facto relationships which differ depending on the particular State or Territory law that applies.
The new laws enable courts to order a division of any property that the couple own, either separately or together with each other. Superannuation that each partner has is also able to be split (married couples have been able to split superannuation since 2002). Orders for spouse maintenance are now also possible.
Courts will be able to make these orders if satisfied of one of the following:
- the period (or the total of the periods) of the de facto relationship is at least 2 years
- there is a child of the de facto relationship
- one of the partners has made a substantial financial or non-financial contribution (including as a homemaker or parent) and serious injustice to that partner would result if the order was not made
- the de facto relationship has been registered in a State or Territory with laws for the registration of relationships.
For any family law matter, contact us today on (02) 8084 2764.
Divorce is the legal dissolution of a marriage and can only take place once a couple has been living separately for over 12 months.
There are many factors to consider when applying for divorce including proof of separation, time married and considerations for children.
The development of no fault divorce in Australia was intended to reduce conflict however the emotional impact on the parties remains. We strive to help people through this process.
Parties can be accepted as separated even though they’re still living under the same roof and Platinum Lawyers can assist in having that accepted by the court through presentation of appropriate evidence of the circumstances, mainly to prove the parties lead separate lives and hold themselves out to others as doing so.
The court also needs to satisfy itself as to arrangements for any children of the marriage.
Competitive hourly rates please call one of our Family Lawyers Today!