Do I qualify for an online divorce? Take this test!
Our fixed fee, Australia-wide Divorce Service is for you if:
- You have separated from your spouse;
- You’ve been married for at least 2 years; (No? FAQ 13)
- You’ve lived separately & apart for at least 12 months; (No? FAQ 14)
- Your spouse consents to the divorce; (No? FAQ 15)
- Proper care arrangements have been made for all children currently under 18; and (No? FAQ 16)
- Both you and your spouse have an Australian mailing address (No? FAQ 17)
If you answered YES to all of these questions, click here to apply now!
If you answered NO to any of them, read our FAQs below… we can still help you! Call our Family Law Team today.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
We encourage all divorce applicants to thoroughly read these prior to applying.
1. What does this service include?
Our Fixed Fee Online Divorce Service includes:
- Completing the Application for Divorce;
- Filing the Application for Divorce with the Court;
- Corresponding on your behalf with your spouse; and
- Providing a copy of the Divorce Order to you and your spouse.
2. What is included in the fixed fee?
All costs associated with obtaining a Divorce are included.
Note:The Court allows an application for divorce to be filed three (3) months of uploading the Application for Divorce onto the Courts portal. If either you and/or your spouse do not sign and make the Application for Divorce available to our firm for filing with the Court in an approved format within three (3) months of uploading the Application for Divorce on the Courts portal, we will issue an invoice for work undertaken on your behalf in accordance with our client services agreement calculated at minimum intervals of six minute units. If you choose to again instruct our firm draft a fresh application for divorce, any costs invoiced will not form part of our estimated costs of $880 and will constitute a new agreement with our firm.
3. How much does it cost?
4. Is my application managed by a Family Lawyer?
Yes, a member of our Family Law team will manage the application for your Divorce.
5. What do I have to provide?
To file your Divorce Application, we will require your commitment to the following:
1. You fill out this online form; and
2. You provide a copy of all documents requested, including but not limited to:
- A copy of your Marriage Certificate (the official certificate issued by Births, Deaths & Marriages or the relevant State body);
- A copy of any financial or children’s Orders previously made between you and your spouse;
- A copy of any domestic violence Orders currently in place;
- A copy of your passport or citizenship papers if you were not born in Australia.
In addition to submitting a completed form, we include an allowance of up to an hour to discuss with you the Application via phone, email, Skype or in person to address any issues that may arise when completing your Application for Divorce.
6. What are compulsory Court fees?
When filing an Application for Divorce, the Court charges a filing fee, which is currently $865. This fee is independent of our firm and is charged to every individual applying for a Divorce in Australia.
In certain circumstances, you may be eligible for a reduction of this filing fee to $280. You will only be eligible for this reduction if you receive any of the following means tested pension or benefit:
- Health care card;
- Pension and concession card;
- Commonwealth senior health card;
- Any card issued by Centrelink or Department of Veteran Affairs that certifies an entitlement to Commonwealth health concessions;
- Youth allowance or Austudy payments;
- Abstudy benefits.
7. How does this service work?
After completing our online form, your Application for Divorce will be completed by our firm.
Your Application for Divorce will then be forwarded to you and your spouse for signing.
Upon receipt of the signed Application, we will then file the Application with the Court.
A copy of the original Application will then be forwarded to you and your spouse and the Court will set down a Hearing date. The Court will keep your original Application for Divorce and give you and your spouse a sealed copy of the Application.
All joint Applications, regardless of whether or not there are children, do not require attendance upon the Court.
8. What is not included?
Our Fixed Fee Online Divorce Service is for couples who have mutually agreed that they wish to be divorced. If your spouse does not agree to obtaining a Divorce, we can still assist you, however we will be unable to assist you on a fixed fee basis and we invite you to contact our firm to discuss this matter further.
Divorce matters do not resolve any children’s matters or property settlement matters. These matters are separate and we recommend that if you have separated, you immediately obtain legal advice to discuss these matters with one of our family lawyers. We recommend that you attend upon our First Step Package appointment, which is a fixed fee first step to obtain advice for these matters.
If you have separated but are living under the one roof, you are required to file statements with the Court. These will be charged on an hourly basis to draft, if required.
9. Are there any additional fees?
In most cases, the above process occurs through without difficulty. In some cases, however, there may be additional issues that need to be resolved and we do charge extra for this work on an hourly basis if required.
Examples can be:
- If the other party refuses to sign the Application;
- Difficulties regarding the jurisdiction to apply for a Divorce, ie. if you or your spouse are not Australian citizens; or
- If the other party denies receipt of the Application.
10. How long does it take to process my application?
Once we receive an application for online divorce, the first step for us is getting the application signed by both consenting parties. This can occur in a matter of days or it can take a couple of weeks, depending on how easy it is for us to get in touch with both parties and how fast they respond to us with a signed divorce application.
Once the application has been signed by both parties, we file it with the Court (the $865 fee) and the matter is then listed in about 6 weeks time (on average) for a Divorce Hearing. Provided the divorce is granted, a Divorce Order is issued one month and one day after the date of the Divorce Hearing.
11. When and how does payment occur?
Once you have submitted your Application for Divorce using our online form, a member of our Family Law team will contact you to verify that you still want to move forward with the application and they will also double check that all of your answers are correct. Once our team member has received confirmation that you would like to proceed and all of your details are correct, you will be required to pay our low fixed fee of $880 and the court filing fee of $865 ($1,745 in total). Alternatively, you may choose to pay only our fixed fee ($880) up-front and pay the remaining court filing fee ($865) when our Family Law team is ready to file your application with the court.
Payment typically occurs over the phone when a member of our team gets in contact with you, following the submission of your application. However, if you would prefer to make the payment in person at your local bank, our team member will provide you with our account details to facilitate that.
12. Is this divorce service available all over Australia?
Yes, this is an Australia-wide service. We cover New South Wales (NSW), Queensland (QLD), Victoria (VIC), South Australia (SA), Western Australia (WA), Northern Territory (NT), Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and Tasmania (TAS). This includes online divorces in all major cities and surrounding towns (including Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Canberra, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin, Newcastle, Gold Coast and Hobart).
13. What happens if I haven’t been married for at least 2 years?
You have two options.
- Counsellor Certificate – You will both need to see a Court-approved marriage counsellor (either in person, over a teleconference or via a video call) to discuss the reasons for your divorce. If the counsellor is satisfied, they will issue you with a certificate, which we will file with the Court in conjunction with your online divorce application. There will be additional charges associated with seeing the counsellor.
- File an Affidavit – We can draft and file an Affidavit with the Court which clearly outlines the reasons for your divorce. There will be additional charges associated with this (estimated 1 hour of the lawyer’s time).
14. What happens if I haven’t lived separately for at least 12 months?
If you have both been living in the same residence, while separated, we can draft and file an Affidavit with the Court which clearly outlines that, despite your living arrangements, you have been separated for a period of at least 12 months. This is a more complex Affidavit than the one described in q.13. There will be additional charges associated with this (estimated 1.5 hours of the lawyer’s time).
It should also be noted that when you are relying on a period of separation where both parties are residing under the one roof, both parties are required to file an Affidavit with the Court. We are unable to draft the Affidavit for both parties.
15. What happens if my spouse does not consent to the divorce?
It really depends on your situation and, because of this, we recommend giving our Family Law Team a call.
The main factor is whether there are children involved.
- Sole Divorce (No Kids) – If there are no children involved, you will not need to go to Court. We will need to file an ‘Affidavit of Service’ with the Court. To do this, we arrange for a Process Server to serve the divorce application on your spouse (in person). Once served, your spouse will sign an ‘Acknowledgement of Service’, which is a personal acknowledgement that he/she is aware of the pending divorce. There will be additional charges associated with us engaging a Process Server. If your spouse refuses to sign the application as a joint applicant our fixed-fee online divorce service will not apply. We can still represent you however as a sole applicant.
- Sole Divorce (With Kids) – If there are children involved, you will have to go to Court, in which case there will be increased fees involved and our fixed-fee online divorce service will not apply. Contact our Family Law Team for further information.
16. What happens if I haven’t made arrangements for my children and property?
- Children – If you have children with your spouse, your divorce application will need to include, in detail, parenting arrangements for your children. These arrangements can be sorted out formally (Parenting Orders) or informally (Parenting Plans). Either way, we cannot process your divorce application until you have made arrangements for your children. We can assist you in making these arrangements, call our Family Law Team to find out how.
- Property – As mentioned in the header of this page, we always recommend focusing on the property settlement first, before filing for divorce. The main reason for doing this is to avoid a 12-month time limit, which will be placed on you by the Court once you have filed for divorce, in which to initiate your property settlement. We can assist you with your property settlement, call our Family Law Team to find out how.
17. What happens if we don’t have Australian mailing addresses?
The Court requires that both you and your spouse have an Australian mailing address on your Application for Divorce.
Solution 1: If you don’t have an Australian mailing address, you can use the address of a friend or relative who lives in Australia and arrange for them to forward your mail to your residential address.
Solution 2: If you don’t have an Australian mailing address, you can get one by utilising the services of a mail forwarding company, like SOS Mail.
18. What if I need to do a property settlement?
Your divorce and property settlement are two separate processes. You don’t need to do them both at the same time. Getting divorced, although emotionally draining, is a legal process that doesn’t involve discussion about finances, property or assets. It’s about simply formally ending your marriage.
A property settlement is a complex legal process which provides the financial base for your future… and once you divorce, you only have 12 months in which to apply for your property settlement. Therefore, if your divorce is pending, we recommend you consider initiating your property settlement as soon as you possibly can (before you divorce).
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