Married couples in Australia can apply for a divorce if their marriage has broken down irretrievably. To make an Application for Divorce:
- the parties must have been separated for a period of at least 12 months;
- one of the parties must regard Australia as their home and intend to reside in Australia permanently;
- one of the parties must be an Australian citizen by birth, decent or grant of Australian Citizenship;
- and the parties must have lived in Australia and have done so for 12 months immediately before filing the application for divorce.
Parties must be separated for a period of at least 12 months, but this time can include a period of separation under the one roof. Often following separation, parties do not have the financial resources to formally separate and live in different residences so they may regard their marriage as over, but continue to live in the same residence.
An application for divorce can be made by you or your spouse, or it can be made jointly. If you are making the application on your own, you will need to satisfy the Court that your spouse has been properly served and is on notice of the application.
If you have children under the age of 18 years, you will be required to attend Court for the hearing of the application. The Court will need to be satisfied that proper arrangements have been put in place for the children.