Divorce is a necessary legal process to officially end a marriage. A couple must be separated for at least 12 months before official divorce proceedings can begin.

There are a few conditions you must meet before you are eligible for divorce

To be eligible to divorce your spouse, you need to satisfy the following conditions:

If you find yourself in this position, our team of family lawyers can advise and guide you through the process as well.

What does the divorce process look like?

Initial consultation

Schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced divorce lawyers to discuss your situation and understand your options. Bring any relevant documents, such as your marriage certificate, and any agreements or court orders related to your marriage.

Separation confirmation

Confirm that you have been separated for at least 12 months and meet the eligibility criteria for divorce. We will help you gather the necessary evidence, such as proof of separate residences or affidavits from friends and family.

Filing the divorce application

Our family lawyers will prepare and file your divorce application with the Family Court. This application will include all required documents, such as the marriage certificate and proof of separation. The filing process typically takes 2–3 weeks.

Serving the divorce papers

Once the application is filed, the divorce papers must be served to your spouse. We will handle the service process, ensuring it is done correctly and within legal timelines. Your spouse will have a set period to respond, usually 28 days.

Court hearing and Decree Nisi

Attend the court hearing (if required) to finalise the divorce. The court will review the application and, if satisfied, issue a Decree Nisi. This is the first official step in the divorce being granted, and typically occurs 1–2 months after filing.

Decree Absolute and finalisation

Six weeks after the Decree Nisi, you can apply for the Decree Absolute, which finalises the divorce. Our team will assist you in this final step, ensuring all paperwork is in order. Once granted, you are officially divorced.

The Ideal Timeline to Follow

Most people aren’t in a hurry to get Divorced unless they are wanting to get remarried. The more pressing issues are typically Parenting Orders and property settlements. At Freedom Family Law, we generally don’t recommend starting the Divorce process until you have completed the property settlement process.

A Family Law Court, when dealing with a divorce, does want to know what is happening with the children, even if there are no formal arrangements in place. Whether or not there are Parenting Orders or Parenting Plans in place, does not affect a person’s right to obtain a divorce.

The usual time between applying for a divorce and receiving a Decree Nisi of Divorce is three to four months. It is upon the date of the Decree Nisi of Divorce that you are legally “divorced”.

Divorce and property settlement

If you do divorce your spouse, it is very important that you reach a property settlement agreement with them (with such an agreement to be formalised by way of a Binding Financial Agreement or Consent Orders), or apply to the Court for a property settlement, within 12 months after your divorce. If you do not, you will lose your right to ask the Court for a property settlement, and this may cause you great financial hardship.

A Court will only allow a property settlement 12 months after a divorce in very limited and special circumstances.

If you find yourself in this position, our team of family lawyers can advise and guide you through the process.

property settlement agreement photo

At Freedom Family Law, we want the best for you and your family.

Experienced divorce lawyers

Our team consists of highly skilled and experienced divorce lawyers who understand the complexities of the Family Law Act. We have successfully represented numerous clients in family law matters, ensuring the best possible outcomes for their unique situations.

Comprehensive family law services

From divorce proceedings to property settlements and parenting arrangements, we offer a full range of family law services. Our holistic approach ensures that all aspects of your family law dispute are handled with expertise and care.

Client-centred approach

We prioritise your needs and tailor our services to your specific circumstances. Our empathetic and knowledgeable family law attorneys are committed to providing compassionate support while guiding you through the family law process.

Proven track record

Our law firm has a strong reputation for achieving favourable results for our clients. As trusted divorce lawyers in Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast, we have helped many individuals navigate their family law disputes with confidence.

Accessible and convenient

Located on the Sunshine Coast, we serve clients all over Queensland and in other states. Whether you are looking for “divorce lawyers near me” or need remote assistance, our team is ready to help you efficiently and effectively.

Free initial consultation

We offer a free consultation to discuss your family law matter. This allows you to understand your options and our approach without any initial financial commitment. Let us help you take the first step towards closure.

Frequently Asked Questions

To file for a divorce, you will need your marriage certificate, proof of separation (such as separate addresses or affidavits from friends and family), and any existing agreements or court orders related to your marriage. With Freedom Family Law, an experienced divorce lawyer from our team can help you gather and prepare these documents to ensure a smooth application process.

You can still file for divorce if you have been living under the same roof, provided you can demonstrate that you have been not been living together as a couple. This may include separate finances, bedrooms, and evidence of minimal interaction. Affidavits from friends, family, or neighbours can also support your claim. A family law attorney can guide you through this process to ensure your application meets the court’s requirements.

The division of assets in a property settlement is based on various factors, including the length of the marriage, financial and non-financial contributions, future needs, and the care of any children. Our family divorce lawyers will work with you to present a comprehensive case that aims for a fair and equitable division of assets, ensuring your financial interests are protected.

Yes, you can apply for a divorce without your spouse’s consent if you meet the eligibility criteria, including being separated for at least 12 months. This is known as a sole application. A Brisbane divorce lawyer from our team can help you navigate this process and manage any objections from your spouse, ensuring that your application proceeds smoothly.

A Binding Financial Agreement (BFA) is a legally binding document that outlines the division of assets and liabilities between you and your spouse. It can be made before, during, or after the marriage and requires both parties to receive independent legal advice.

A BFA can provide certainty and prevent future disputes. Our family law attorneys will assist you in drafting and formalising a BFA that meets your needs and complies with legal requirements.

The court considers the best interests of the children when determining parenting arrangements. This includes factors such as the children’s relationship with each parent, their needs, and the capacity of each parent to provide for them. Whether or not there are formal Parenting Orders or Parenting Plans in place, the court will review the current arrangements to ensure they are in the children’s best interests. Our experienced divorce lawyers will advocate for a parenting arrangement that supports your children’s well-being and stability.

If your spouse refuses to accept the divorce papers, alternative methods of service can be used, such as substituted service or service by publication. Our family law attorneys will handle the service process and take the necessary steps to ensure that your spouse is properly notified, allowing your divorce application to proceed without unnecessary delays.

The time frame for the divorce process varies depending on individual circumstances. Typically, from the initial consultation to the finalisation of the Decree Absolute, it takes around 4–6 months. This doesn’t include the required 12-month separation period, but does include filing the application, serving the papers, and waiting for the court hearing and issuance of the Decree Nisi.

At Freedom Family Law, our divorce lawyers will keep you informed and guide you through each step, ensuring a timely resolution.

It’s important to note that there are some special conditions that you need to satisfy if you have been married for less than two years, or if you want to have your marriage annulled. Get in touch with us, and we’ll be happy to walk you through this process and outline what you can expect.

Your passionate team of family lawyers

Let’s work out your next steps together. Book your free consultation to start the process.