De Facto Law

The De Facto Relationship

What is De Facto?

According to Section 4AA of the Family Law Act 1975 is two people in a married-like relationship. The relationship must be accepted even though it is illegitimate. The de facto law does not discriminate. The law applies for same and opposite sex couples. Here is an example of a de facto relationship: Karen and JoAnn have been living together for ten years. Karen and JoAnn both work respectable jobs and share equivalent amount of financial responsibilities. Karen and JoAnn share two children together ages 2 and 4. Karen and JoAnn never thought about marriage since they were already doing married things together without the legal paperwork. Karen and JoAnn split over a year ago due to lifestyle differences. Karen and JoAnn by law was in a de facto relationship and are going to family court to decide custody of the children. The issues of the children will be dealt with the same way it would if the couple was legally married. That scenario is one example of de facto law.

It does not matter if the relationship was over 5 years ago. If either party can prove they were in a de facto relationship. There are four gateway criteria that prove de facto. A de facto relationship in Australia is at least 2 years. If not at least two years a child is involved. That the relationship was registered by law by a State or territory. The property or custodial claims during the breakdown of the relationship that one individual had significant contributions. De facto relationship even applies if the person will be entering one as well. The de facto law does not apply if the 2 persons were in a marriage or if related by family.

How does De Facto lawyers help?

Legal advice is recommended before former couples decide to file an application with family court or federal circuit court. The de facto lawyer helps by aiding the former partner in family court to sort out any disputes the former couple has. The court will decide whether the de facto relationship exists or existed. There are several factors that help decide the existence of a de facto relationship. The court will need evidence of all circumstances between both parties. These circumstances are like if the de facto relationship was a legal marriage. The courts investigate the duration of the relationship, arrangements financial support, financial expenses, monetary responsibility, common residence, if a sexual relationship existed, property, childcare if children are involved, and household duties. The court does not find sex of relationship, current relationship status relevant to the case. A current relationship status could be if the ex-partner is now married or entered another de facto relationship. There is a two-year time limit on the application process. The application can be extended if the court can determine hardship would be caused on one partner by refusing leave.