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De Facto Relationships

De Facto Relationships

On 1 March 2009, heterosexual and same sex couples were entitled to bring their property and maintenance matters, upon the breakdown of their de facto relationship, under the Family Law Act 1975 (“the Act”). Parenting matters have always been dealt with under the Act and no changes were made in this regard with respect to a de facto relationship.
The issue of whether your relationship is identified as a de facto relationship or not for the purposes of the Act can be complicated.

In order to ascertain whether a relationship is in fact a de facto relationship, the Court will consider the following:

  • The periods or period of the de facto relationship needs to amount to 2 years unless, there is a child of the relationship;
  • The nature and extent of the joint residence of the parties;
  • Whether or not a sexual and physical relationship existed between the parties;
  • The ownership, use and purchase of property;
  • Whether there are any children of the relationship;
  • The care and support of the children;
  • The performance of household tasks;
  • The level of mutual commitment of the parties;
  • The reputation and “public” perception of the relationship;
“I always found Pamela to be very prepared and new all details of my matter every time I spoke with her. I was very impressed by this and it made my break up from my de facto partner so much easier.”
Linda, 33 – North Shore

Parties in a de facto relationship that has broken down can enter into a binding financial agreements, consent orders for property and parenting matters and parenting plans. For more information, please contact us.

Cominos Family Lawyers. Call 02 8999 1800 or email us here.