Divorce Lawyers

Stewart Family Law provides compassionate and practical legal advice during each step of your divorce.

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Compassionate & Practical Divorce Lawyers

Ending a significant relationship can be overwhelming, but our highly experienced divorce lawyers will help you understand the legal process and your options.

The team at Stewart Family Lawyers will provide compassionate and strategic counsel to guide you through this challenging time. We focus on protecting your rights and ensuring a fair resolution so you can move forward with confidence and peace of mind.

Unsure Where To Start The Divorce Process? We Can Help.

Our team of specialist family lawyers know that divorce, or ending a de facto partnership, isn’t easy. There is a lot to think about, and many people have no real idea where to start or their legal options. We simplify the legal process, ensuring your best interests are always prioritised.

Unlike large firms, we offer personalised attention and clear communication. We’ll ensure that your matter is given the care and time it deserves and do our best to alleviate the emotional stress that can come with the legal aspects of family and relationship breakdown.


Meet Our Divorce Lawyers

Our family law specialists will work with you to help you achieve a fair and amicable outcome for your divorce matters. We will work closely with you throughout the property settlement process and organise parenting arrangements.

We provide expert guidance on property settlement and asset division, making the process easier to understand and prioritising the best interests of your children.

Judy Stewart, Director of Stewart Family Law, is an Accredited Family Law Specialist with over 20 years of experience. Judy excels in resolving conflicts and finding solutions tailored to your unique circumstances. Our team offers a range of options to successfully finalise property settlement and parenting arrangements that suit your family’s needs and don’t require going to Court.

We are also highly experienced with family court matters. You can feel assured that we will skillfully represent you if there is no other way to resolve matters with your former partner.

Get In Touch With Our Divorce Lawyers Today

If you’re looking for an Accredited Specialist family lawyer, or experienced family law mediation services, please do not hesitate to contact our office if you require assistance with your divorce.

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What Is The Legal Process For Divorce In Australia?

Every relationship truly is unique in this sense, but there are common themes to consider.

Marriages and de facto relationships have similar (but not the same) legal processes, as do same-sex and LGBTIQ+ relationships – which are defined by the same legal statuses, regardless of gender or sexual identity.

If you are married, you'll need a legal divorce to end your marriage. This applies to legal 'separation under the same roof', too.

You can apply for a Divorce Order once you have been separated for twelve (12) months.

You do not need to have been living in separate households during these twelve (12) months and can still be considered as separated if you are living under one roof.

If, during part of the twelve (12) month separation period, you have spent time separated under one roof, you must prove to the Court that you were separated during this time.

For example, you may file an Affidavit confirming you slept in separate beds and did not live together as a couple despite being in the same household. If you have children under the age of 18 years, the Court will need to be satisfied that adequate arrangements have been made for their care since separation.

Divorce Application can be made by either of you as a sole application or by both of you as a joint application. The advantage of filing a joint application is that you do not need to worry about the service of the application on the other party and there is no requirement for you to attend the Divorce Hearing.

The preparation of a Divorce Application is relatively straightforward with the Court’s Divorce Kit or alternatively, we can prepare an Application for you once you become eligible to apply. You can file your Application for Divorce twelve months and one day after your date of separation. For example, if you separated on 1 January, you can file your Application for Divorce on 2 January of the following year or at any later time.

A hearing date is usually given approximately 8 to 10 weeks after you have filed your Application for Divorce. Your Divorce Order will come into effect one month and one day after your Divorce Hearing (provided the Divorce Order is made at the hearing). For example, if the Divorce Order is made on 1 May, it will come into effect on 2 June. 

You cannot remarry until the Divorce Order comes into effect. In certain circumstances, you can apply to have the time between the Divorce Order being made and the Divorce Order coming into effect abridged so that the Divorce Order comes into effect at the time it is made.

If you are in a de facto relationship, you’ll need an official ‘date of separation’ – which is the day your relationship ended. This is the date that time limits for property settlement start from.

From here, you'll have a set timeframe to apply for property settlement and spousal maintenance.

Once you are divorced, any application for property settlement or spousal maintenance must be filed within 12 months, or you will first need to seek leave of the Court before filing an Application for Property Settlement or Spousal Maintenance. There is no guarantee that the Court will grant leave to file an Application for Property Settlement or Spousal Maintenance out of time. For more information see our information regarding Property Settlement and Spousal Maintenance.

The Family Law Act recognises de facto relationships if you live together as a couple. If you have separated from a de facto relationship, you’ll have two years after the official date of separation to arrange property and financial settlement.

You'll also need to organise parenting arrangements if you share children who still live at home.

Our family law team can assist you in creating a parenting plan or formalising your parenting arrangements with Consent Orders. We can also assist with matters relating to child support, parenting disputes, and any issues relating to family and domestic violence that involve your former spouse or partner.

Frequently Asked Questions

While you don’t need a lawyer to get a divorce in Australia, having access to an experienced divorce lawyer can simplify the process and protect your interests, especially regarding property settlements and parenting matters.

The process involves filing an application, serving divorce papers, and attending a hearing. You must provide your marriage certificate and prove that you have lived separately for 12 months. Expert legal services can help you navigate these steps efficiently.

Serving divorce papers typically costs between $100 and $200. The Federal Circuit and Family Court charges a filing fee, and additional legal costs may apply depending on your circumstances.

To choose the best divorce lawyers, ask for recommendations, read reviews, and check their experience in family law. Prioritise lawyers who offer personalised attention, clear communication, and expertise in property settlements and parenting matters. Ask for clear pricing structures for your matter – even though a quote cannot always be exact at the start of the matter, a good lawyer can talk you through expected costs and outlays.

It’s also important to remember that divorce and family lawyers often specialise in different areas. Some may offer mediation and courtroom representation, and others may be excellent with complex business splits after a divorce. You should also look at the memberships and qualifications of your lawyer; for instance,

if they are an ”Accredited Family Law Specialist”, this shows they have a depth of family law skills. Organisations like the Queensland Law Society can also offer insight into a lawyer’s qualifications. Most importantly, chat with a lawyer you are considering working with about your needs and discuss your options to see if they feel like a good fit for you.

Mediation or dispute resolution is an excellent place to start if parties cannot agree on parenting or property matters. If these methods fail, the case will likely end up in the Federal Circuit and Family Court. A family lawyer can provide expert advice and represent your interests to reach a fair outcome.

Divorce proceedings themselves are not substantially costly. However, legal services for property settlements and parenting matters can vary widely. Complex issues, lengthy negotiations, or matters that end up in court will generally cost significantly more.

In most cases, parties are required to attend mediation for parenting and property matters before going to Court. Mediation can be a cost-effective way to reach an agreement, reducing overall legal costs.

Divorce settlements can vary, with common splits being 50/50, 60/40, or even 70/30, depending on individual circumstances. Factors including non-financial contributions and each party’s specific needs play a part, as does the length of the relationship. Consult a family lawyer for advice tailored to your situation.

Divorce in Australia generally takes about four months, but this can vary based on individual client circumstances. After filing, there’s a mandatory 1-month waiting period post-hearing before the Federal Circuit and Family Court finalises the divorce officially.

Options for out-of-court settlements include mediation, collaborative law, and negotiated agreements. These methods can save on legal costs and provide a more amicable resolution. Explore the different legal services available for your situation and consider costs and benefits from the outset.

Awards & Recognition

Since 2017, Doyle’s Guide Has Recognised Our Expertise As Family Lawyers

“I wanted to let you know, Temika – how very grateful I have been to have you represent me over the past few years. You have certainly seen my worst side and kept me sane when I have really needed it! Your professionalism is second to none and I couldn’t have asked for any one better to be on my side! So from the very bottom of my heart thank you!!”

– KD

Start the Process Today with One of Our Compassionate Divorce Lawyers.