Do Consent Orders Expire?
Consent orders do not have a specific expiration date unless stipulated within the consent order itself.
If the consent order pertains to parenting and children matters, it may expire when the child turns 18 and becomes a legal adult.
However, the consent order remains in place in most cases until the parties involved apply to terminate the agreement.
Reasons for Changing a Consent Order
Consent orders are designed to finalise the financial relationships between parties after a separation or divorce. However, there are circumstances where the court may vary these final property orders. Here are the reasons why a consent order can be changed:
- Miscarriage of Justice: This can arise due to fraud, coercion, suppression of evidence, giving false evidence, or other circumstances that lead to an unfair outcome.
- Impracticability: Situations may arise post the order, making it impracticable for the order or a part of it to be carried out.
- Default in Carrying Out Obligations: If a party defaults in fulfilling an obligation imposed by the order, and as a result, it becomes equitable to vary or set aside the order.
- Child’s Welfare: In cases related to the care, welfare, and development of a child, if circumstances of an exceptional nature arise post the order, and the child or the applicant (who has caring responsibility) will suffer hardship, the order may be varied.
- Proceeds of Crime Order: If such an order has been made covering the parties’ property or against a party, the consent order can be changed.
How To Amend a Consent Order?
To update a consent order, the parties involved should draft the terms of the new agreement, known as the “Minute of consent orders.”
An application for consent orders form needs to be completed, and affidavits from both parties should be prepared.
Once all documents are ready, the application can be filed with the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.
How To Terminate a Consent Order?
If you wish to terminate a Consent Order, you must first have valid grounds, such as a significant change in circumstances or a breach of the order’s terms.
To initiate the process, you must submit an application to either the Family Court or the Federal Circuit Court of Australia, accompanied by an affidavit detailing the reasons for the desired termination.
While navigating this process, engaging a family lawyer for guidance is highly recommended. Once your application is filed, the court will schedule a hearing to review and decide on the order’s status.
Depending on the court’s decision, the order may either be terminated and no longer enforceable or remain in place.
It’s crucial to seek legal advice before taking any steps to ensure you’re well-informed of the potential outcomes and implications.
Seek Legal Counsel
Consent orders play a crucial role in ensuring that agreements made between parties post-separation are legally binding and enforceable.
While they offer a structured way to finalise financial and parenting matters, it’s essential to be aware of the circumstances under which they can vary.
Given the complexities involved, seeking legal counsel when dealing with consent orders is always advisable to ensure that one’s rights are protected and legal responsibilities are met.
Director of Melbourne Family Lawyers, Hayder manages the practice and oversees the running of all of the files in the practice. Hayder has an astute eye for case strategy and running particularly complex matters in the family law system.