Family Lawyers Brisbane

As a leading family law firm in Brisbane, we are honoured to be able to help families resolve contentious disputes.

Our experienced family lawyers understand how difficult the transition can be immediately following the breakdown of a relationship. For many, you can be facing one of the most difficult fights of your life.

From dividing property, to deciding on child custody and financial arrangements, and formalising your divorce, there’s a lot to consider and a number of family law issues to resolve.

When facing highly personal family law proceedings, it is essential to be supported by the best family law firm in Brisbane to effectively negotiate with your former partner in the most cost-effective and productive way.

Whether you require assistance with a divorce application, parenting plan or child custody, property settlement, financial agreement, domestic and family violence issues, or any other family law matter, our lawyers are trained to listen to what matters most to you and help you through this difficult time.

Our Brisbane family law services; trusted advice and legal support for families

Family law matters and divorce can be greatly exacerbated when children are involved, or if there is jointly owned property. In even the most complex matters, our compassionate solicitors have the expertise you can depend on.

We use effective dispute resolution strategies to negotiate and resolve your matter at the earliest convenience, without having to resort to family law litigation. If litigation is unavoidable and going to family court is required, our team will be ready to assist you throughout the court process.

Attwood Marshall Lawyers has successfully conducted many complex cases in Family Law Courts, the State Magistrates and Local Court. 

Book a consultation with one of our Brisbane family lawyers today

If you need trusted advice to help you understand your options following separation or in regards to children, parenting or financial matters, book an appointment with our Brisbane family lawyers instantly – it's quick and easy!

Free Info Pack

To find out more about applying for divorce, provide your details below and our Information Pack will be sent to your inbox.

Our Brisbane family solicitors specialise in:

Divorce

Our Brisbane divorce lawyers can provide expert legal advice following separation and help you prepare and lodge, or respond to, an Application for Divorce.

Property Settlements & Spousal Maintenance

Settling property disputes and spousal maintenance when a relationship breaks down can be an extremely emotionally-charged family law issue. It is important to approach property settlements in a way that is fair to both parties and to formalise your property settlement agreement so that it is legally binding and all parties are able to move on with their lives.

Parenting Disputes & Child Custody

We are here to help parents resolve disputes over children and formalise parenting arrangements swiftly. It is our goal to help you negotiate with your former partner in a way that reduces conflict and focusses on the best interests of the children. Our family lawyers are ready to assist with a parenting order or parenting plan.

Binding Financial Agreements

Establishing a binding financial agreement can provide you with peace of mind when a relationship ends, whether it is a marriage or de facto relationship. A binding financial agreement can reduce the risk of a property dispute arising with your former partner that can be costly and stressful down the track. Our experienced Brisbane family lawyers can prepare and review binding financial agreements to protect your best interests.

Child Support

Our family law specialists can provide you with information and advice about paying and receiving child support after a marriage or de facto relationship has ended. Child support agreements should consider the daily living costs of a child, costs associated with education, medical expenses, and any other costs that may arise from your child participating in sport and extra-curricular activities.

Surrogacy

Whether you are considering surrogacy arrangements as a means of starting or growing your family, or you are interested in being a surrogate for a friend or family member, our dedicated surrogacy lawyers can provide the support you need to make informed decisions and help you throughout the process.

Domestic Violence & Family Violence

If you are suffering from family violence or domestic violence, we are here to support you. Our Brisbane family law firm can provide swift assistance with completing an Application for Protection Order (Domestic Violence Order) or Apprehended Violence Order. We are one of the few family law firms available any time on our 24/7 phone line if you require urgent advice and assistance. Please call 1800 621 071 for a confidential discussion with one of our Brisbane family lawyers.

Key considerations after separation​

Following separation, there are important issues you need to address as you work towards finalising your divorce. Here are some key family law matters to keep in mind:

Review your estate planning:

  • Update your Will immediately. Failing to do so might mean that your ex-spouse could inherit everything if you were to pass away unexpectedly;
  • Enduring Power of Attorney Documents. Revoke an existing Enduring Power of Attorney granted to your spouse and replace it with a new one;
  • Bank accounts and property. Review any jointly-owned bank accounts or property and consider severing the joint tenancy for property. Bank accounts should be split into individual accounts;
  • Superannuation and life insurance policies. Review your superannuation and life insurance (death cover) policies, and make necessary changes to binding nominations, including self-managed superannuation funds;
  • Business entities. Audit business entities like companies and trusts to see if any assets need protecting from being transferred or sold.


Negotiating a property settlement:

  • Property settlements can often be resolved prior to your divorce being finalised. Consider entering into a Binding Financial Agreement. If both parties are unable to reach an agreement over their property division amicably, court intervention may be necessary. Trying to negotiate effectively with your former spouse early is the best approach to avoid costly court disputes.


Spousal support:

  • Spousal support and financial agreements can be dealt with as part of the negotiations when entering into a Binding Financial Agreement. However, if both parties choose not to enter into a financial agreement, there are other avenues that can be explored to determine spousal maintenance arrangements, including through informal agreements, mediation, arbitration, or family court proceedings.


Child support and parenting arrangements:

  • Parents of dependent children must continue to financially support their children and meet their obligations following separation. There are several ways child support can be determined, including through a private agreement or by following the standard child support formula set out and delivered by Services Australia. Parents can also enter into a Parenting Consent Order or Parenting Plan to formalise their parenting arrangements.

Navigating family law issues after separation can be challenging and emotionally sensitive. This is why obtaining independent tailored advice from an experienced family lawyer can make all the difference and help you facilitate productive negotiations and formalise agreements early, allowing everyone to move forward peacefully.

Where to start when you are separating

If you’re in the early stages of separation, download our checklist for guidance on the initial steps to take and key things to consider.

FAQs – Family Law & Divorce

In Australia, you must satisfy at least one of the below criteria to be eligible to apply for divorce:

  • You normally reside in Australia;
  • You are an Australian citizen;
  • You consider Australia to be your home and you intend to live in Australia indefinitely;
  • You have lived in Australia for 12 months immediately preceding filing the Application for Divorce.


An Application for Divorce must be filed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia. Australia’s divorce process is a “no-fault” system, which means the court does not consider which partner was at fault in the marriage breakdown. Therefore, the only requirement before filing the application is that you and your former spouse must have been separated for 12 months or more prior to filing the application.

You can only apply for a divorce after you have been separated for a period of at least twelve months. If you have been separated, but reconciled for a period of time, then the 12-month period starts after the reconciliation came to an end.

If you have concerns about whether you are eligible to apply for divorce in Australia, contact our friendly divorce lawyers in Brisbane to discuss your specific circumstances. Call 1800 621 071.

Applications for divorce can be filed using an online form that is submitted through the Commonwealth Courts online portal. Some people choose to complete a divorce application on their own, however it can be advantageous to have a lawyer assist you with your application.

A divorce application can be made solely or as a joint application. Depending whether you file your application solely or jointly will determine what information you may need to provide as part of the application process.

In Australia, a court does not consider who was at fault in the breakdown of a marriage.

To apply for a divorce, you must:

  • Prove that the marriage has irretrievably broken and that you have been separated for at least 12 months;
  • Have been married for at least two years or more or have attended the required counselling with the Family Court.


If you would like more advice about your specific circumstances or to check your eligibility to apply for divorce, contact our Brisbane divorce lawyers at any time on 1800 621 071.

If you have been married for less than two years and want to make an Application for Divorce, there are some additional steps you will need to take, including:

  • Attending a mediation with your former spouse with a court approved family and child mediator where you will need to discuss the possibility of reconciliation. Once you have attended mediation, you must file a certificate completed by the counsellor with your Application for Divorce. If for any reason you cannot attend the mediation, you must file an affidavit outlining the reasons why counselling is not an option.
  • You may file an application seeking the court’s permission to proceed within 2 years of the marriage under special circumstances.

In most cases, no, your former spouse cannot refuse the divorce. If the court is satisfied that the marriage has broken down irretrievably and that you and your former spouse have been separated for at least 12 months, there are very limited reasons why the divorce should not be granted. It is your responsibility to prove that your spouse was served the divorce documents according to the rules.

“Service” is the delivery of the court documents to your spouse after they have been filed. By servicing the documents, this ensures all parties have received the documents filed with the court and that everyone is aware of the pending Application for Divorce. 

When it comes to establishing child custody arrangements following separation, the primary focus is to ascertain the best interests of the child or children involved. Under the Family Law Act, several crucial factors are taken into account, including:

  1. Promoting a meaningful relationship with both parents: one key consideration is the advantage to the child or children in maintaining a substantial and meaningful relationship with both of their parents.

  2. Protecting children from harm: Equally important is safeguarding the child, or children, from potential physical harm, psychological harm, abuse, neglect, or domestic violence and family violence. This protection is paramount in ensuring the child’s welfare.

In situations where reaching an agreement with your former spouse regarding child custody arrangements is a source of concern or contention, our Brisbane family lawyers can help provide you with the steps to take to formalise parenting arrangements and ensure your children’s best interests are met. Call our family lawyers on 1800 621 071 any time to discuss your unique situation.

If you still live under the same roof as your former spouse, you will need to provide evidence of the separation to the court. The action of separating must involve a complete and open break from the marital relationship, including:

  • Not sharing meals or mutual entertainment at home or outside of the home with your former spouse
  • Living in separate rooms
  • Stopping all sexual activity
  • Operating separate bank accounts
  • Not providing household services
  • Not representing to family members, friends, or colleagues that the marriage is persisting.

Your unique situation will determine whether you may need to appear in court. An appearance by you or your lawyer will be required if you have children under the age of 18 and the application is not made jointly by you and your former spouse.

If you are living under the same room as your former spouse, it is likely that the court will expect an appearance by you, or your lawyer, to answer any questions regarding the separation.

All divorce hearings are held electronically. You will receive dial in details ahead of your hearing.

Attwood Marshall Lawyers offer a set fee structure for divorce applications. Contact our Brisbane divorce lawyers any time on 1800 621 071 to ask about our fees.

In addition to our set fee, the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia will charge a filing fee for lodging an Application for Divorce. This fee can be reduced if you have a concession card or receive Centrelink benefits.

Yes! A property settlement and a divorce are two separate legal matters. It is important to note that divorce affects property settlements by triggering a time limitation period, which if lapsed, can cause you difficulty in making a court application for property settlement or spousal maintenance. The time limitation period will commence once your Divorce Order is final (one day and one month after the divorce application hearing date).

If 12 months has passed after your divorce has been finalised, and you have not yet finalised your property settlement, you must obtain the family court’s permission before filing any court application.

Our family law solicitors can help you negotiate a property settlement. Call us today to discuss your situation on 1800 621 071.

Once a divorce is granted, it will be finalised one month and one day later, unless a special order is made by the court. You can download your divorce order from the Commonwealth Courts portal the following working day after the order has become final.

Yes! It is very important to review your estate plan and update your Will as soon as possible after separating from your spouse. Any gift you have in your Will that you previously had intended to leave to your spouse will become invalid on divorce.

It is also imperative to update your Enduring Power of Attorney or Appointment of Enduring Guardian documents, as you may have previously appointed your spouse to be your attorney or guardian, and your change of circumstances may mean you need to revoke and cancel the existing documents in order to appoint a new attorney or guardian.

You may also need to revise any superannuation and life insurance nominations you have previously put in place.

Our family law lawyers can discuss your estate planning needs and help you understand what you need to consider alongside your divorce.

Our Brisbane Family Law Team

When you choose Attwood Marshall Lawyers to represent you for a family law matter, we promise you comprehensive services delivered by a dedicated team who practice exclusively in this field. Our team leverage off the extensive experience of Special Counsel Hayley Condon who practices in all areas of family law. Hayley is a member of the Family Law Practitioners Association, the Family Law Section of Law Council of Australia, and the Queensland Law Society. She was also named a finalist in the Women in Law Awards 2022 for Senior Associate of the Year (SME Law). 

Unlike boutique family law firms or generalist lawyers, Attwood Marshall Lawyers is an all-service law firm with specialist legal teams who practice exclusively in their chosen field. Our family lawyers are supported by other legal departments that can assist our clients with any overlapping legal issues that may arise. When you are facing separation and divorce, you often also need to consider reviewing your Will and Power of Attorney documents, transferring home ownership or complex property matters, restructuring jointly owned businesses, resolving estate disputes, and other legal matters. We are ready to help you with all your legal needs. 

Hayley Condon - Senior Associate - Wills & Estates, Family Law

Family Law Solicitors Brisbane – Expert legal advice you can depend on

To discuss your family law needs with an experienced family lawyer in Brisbane City, contact us today.

Donna

Tolley

Message our Department Manager, Donna