The divorce process can be emotionally challenging and overwhelming, and one of the common questions that arise during this time is, “How long does a divorce take in Australia?”
Understanding the timeline for divorce proceedings is crucial for those seeking to end their marriage.
Applying for a Divorce in Melbourne is a relatively quick process and, if handled efficiently, can be completed within three or so months of filing your Divorce Application with the Court in Melbourne.
There are specific requirements before you can legally file your Divorce Application. These are:
- Your Marriage must have broken down irretrievably;
- You must have been separated from your spouse for a minimum of 12 months
- It would help if you had in place proper arrangements for the welfare of the children of the Marriage
If you satisfy the above requirements, a Divorce Application can be prepared and filed with the Court, and you can proceed with the following steps.
Filing for Divorce in Australia
In Australia, divorce falls under the jurisdiction of the Family Court of Australia and the Federal Circuit Court. To initiate the divorce process, either party must meet specific criteria.
Firstly, they must have been separated for at least 12 months before filing for divorce. Moreover, they should prove that the marriage has broken down irretrievably and that reconciliation is impossible.
Applying for Divorce
Once the eligibility requirements are met, an application for divorce can be submitted to the court.
Both parties can apply jointly, or one party can apply individually. If the divorce application is made together, it is usually processed faster than individual applications.
The court will then review the application and schedule a hearing date.
After submitting the divorce application, there is a mandatory waiting period of one month before the divorce can be finalised.
This waiting period allows couples to consider reconciliation or make arrangements concerning property settlement, child custody, and financial matters.
Attendance at the Divorce Hearing
For individual applications, the applicant must attend the divorce hearing. If both parties have applied jointly, they may not be required to participate in the hearing.
During the hearing, the court will verify the details of the application and ensure that all legal requirements have been met.
Finalising the Divorce
A divorce order will be granted once the court is satisfied that all requirements are met.
The divorce becomes final one month and one day after the court issues the divorce order.
It is essential to note that the time from applying for the divorce to becoming final can vary depending on various factors.
Factors Influencing the Duration of the Divorce Process: How Long Does a Divorce Take
How long does a divorce take? From filing a divorce to obtaining a divorce order – the process is normally about 4 months.
Here are the factors influencing the duration of the divorce process.
a. Complexity of the Case: If the divorce involves complex financial matters, property disputes, or child custody issues, it may take longer to resolve.
b. Cooperation between Parties: A divorce can be expedited if both parties cooperate and agree on crucial matters like property division and child custody.
c. Court Caseload: The time taken to process a divorce can also depend on the court’s workload and the number of cases being handled at a given time.
d. Legal Representation: Hiring experienced divorce lawyers can ensure that all legal procedures are followed correctly, potentially speeding up the process.
How We Provide Assistance
As a law firm, we received a call from Kim, a dedicated mother of two and a successful dentist, seeking our assistance in ending her 8-year marriage with Tommy.
Empathising with her situation, we assured Kim we would guide her through the divorce process.
Firstly, we scheduled a consultation to understand the details of her marriage, assets, and child custody concerns.
After thoroughly assessing her case, we prepared and filed the divorce petition on her behalf, ensuring all necessary legal.
Our team skillfully negotiated with Tommy’s legal representation to reach a fair settlement on property division and child custody matters.
In due course, the court approved the divorce, finalising the end of Kim and Tommy’s marriage.
With our professional guidance, Kim’s divorce was successfully granted, allowing her to move forward.
Seeking Legal Advice Is Essential
How long does a divorce take? The time it takes to finalise a divorce in Australia can vary depending on individual circumstances and factors such as the complexity of the case, cooperation between parties, and the court’s caseload.
However, in most cases, the process typically takes 4 months, from applying to receiving the divorce order.
If you are considering divorce, seeking legal advice and support is essential to navigate this challenging period and ensure a smooth and fair resolution for all parties involved.
The founder of the firm, Silvio is a Family Law Specialist Accredited by the Law Institute of Victoria, Accredited FindLaw Feature Writer in Family Law and is a Founding Member of the Collaborative Law Committee of the Law Institute of Victoria.