Defacto Relationship 

No matter if it is a legally binding marriage or a long-term relationship, when a personal partnership breaks down, it becomes very clear that you could be leaving behind a substantial investment. This could be financially and emotionally. So, when it is time to walk away, understandably it can be quite difficult.

Under the Family Law Act (since 2009) de facto couples have the same rights as married couples to seek a property settlement or spouse maintenance payment when they separate. 

If you have found yourself in a situation after years committed to another person, that your de facto relationship has ended, Michael Lynch Family Lawyers will be able to help guide you through what to do next.

How do you know if you are in a defacto relationship?

Firstly, as defined in Section 4AA of the Family Law Act 1975, to be considered ‘de facto’  a couple needs to have been together on a “genuine domestic basis.” There are various indicators as to whether that is the case, some of these indicators include:

  • The duration of the relationship;
  • The nature and extent of their common residence;
  • Whether a sexual relationship exists;
  • The degree of financial dependence or interdependence and any arrangements for financial support between them;
  • The ownership, use and acquisition of their property;
  • The degree of mutual commitment to a shared life and substantial contributions that may have been made;
  • The care and support of children (if there are any); and
  • The reputation and public aspects of the relationship.

If found to be together on a ‘genuine domestic basis’, one of the following needs to exist;

  • The couple had been in the relationship for at least 2 years; or
  • There is a child of the relationship (in which case there is no time requirement); or
  • It would be unjust not to recognise a defacto spouse’s financial or non-financial contribution.

If you’d like to find out more on the topic of defacto relationship, please read the following featured articles:

What Constitutes Separation

For a defacto couple’s property settlement it is important to determine when separation occurred.

It may seem simple, but from our experience it rarely is. We need to be able to establish the current and ongoing living arrangements. Is one partner likely to need to move out of the family home? Or can you be in the house but separated.  It is crucial to document a timeline of events and other important information in order to make the process of separation less stressful. >…

Defacto Property Settlement Time Limits

If you have separated, it is important that you get Family Law advice about how to achieve a property settlement. There are strict time limits that apply, so if you miss them there can be real problems. 

The Family Law Act provides that for defacto couples you will have 2 years from the date of separation in which to finalise your property settlement. If you miss this time limitation, you must first obtain leave of the court to proceed out of time. This is not a straight-forward process, the application may be granted in the event that you, or your child suffer hardship. Read full article >…

Defacto Issues

You may have an understanding that you are in a defacto relationship but what happens now? Like every relationship there are challenges to resolve: parenting, property, child support. How does that effect you? Here’s a quick guide >…

Getting to ‘Yes”

Defacto relationships are no different to other relationships when it comes to trying to resolve issues. Amicable outcomes are always best.

Mediation provides an alternative to going to Court. It involves you and your former partner, sitting down with an independent third party. Here are some helpful tips as to whether mediation would be suitable for you. >…

Speak to One of Queensland’s Largest Family Law Firms

Rather than trying to take on a defacto separation, property settlement or spouse maintenance by yourself, we can be on your side throughout the entire process. For a fixed-cost no obligation initial appointment to discuss your specific situation, call Michael Lynch Family Lawyers on (07) 3221 4300 or fill out our online form.

Client Testimonials

Your team’s communication with me was exceptional, I knew exactly what was happening.
A.A., Eatons Hill
The professionalism and reliability delivered by Amy Honan was fantastic. I had an urgent matter around my property sale and Amy offered to provide assistance over a weekend if I required it – that’s above and beyond!
E.F., Nundah
So pleased to have had a good, sound and knowledgeable firm.
C.W., Brookfield
I really liked the personable service by Michael, the simple plain language he adopts and his patience.
A.O., Kedron
Amy, thanks very much to you and your team. Throughout my dealings with MLFL I have been continually impressed with your level of professionalism and, in particular, your understanding of circumstances and the articulate way you conduct yourself. I was completely satisfied with today’s outcome and without your experience and expertise in family law I doubt that the result would have been achieved.
M.R., West End
I always felt that the service provided by Michael Lynch Family Lawyers was of a high standard. Each time, after appointments I came away feeling secure. Keep doing what you are and maintain the ‘family feel’ that permeates your services.
C.W., Brookfield
Amy’s work was extremely professional but above all she has a manner and wisdom in dealing with people under stress. I will be recommending your firm to anyone that requires assistance.
K.H., Augustine Heights
Michael Lynch Family Lawyers always gave me competent and knowledgeable advice. I was consistently kept up to date. The meetings and phone calls were kept business-like, yet caring and thoughtful of my emotional state at the time. Thank you.
J.S., Holland Park
Your newsletters are great, I appreciate them.
K.B., Carina
I liked my solicitor keeping things as simple as possible.
S.M., Clayfield
My lawyer acted with professionalism in all her dealings with me and with the lawyer on the other side. I was always kept in the loop. I liked her approach. Thanks.
D.S., Coorparoo
Michael Lynch Family Lawyers have really listened to me. I felt confident my case was handled well. The law has changed recently, and I did not feel that a previous law practice I spoke to was suitably up-to-date.
P.B., Carindale
Michael is a good listener. My documentation maintained the high moral ground.
S.S., Hamilton
Thank you for providing me with a professional yet empathetic approach to gain the best outcome for me. My solicitor was excellent in explaining the processes and in representing me in Court. You have great customer service!
T.V., Everton Park
I appreciate you being upfront with fee estimates. You also have a fantastic website and the seminars REALLY helped to get me focussed.
T.C., Tarragindi
You guys provide extraordinary service.
A.O., North Brisbane
I was impressed by my solicitor’s attention to detail and her concern for me, and that the process was explained to me and that I understood it at all times.
B.W., Chapel Hill
The staff at Michael Lynch Family Lawyers were great. Everyone was fantastic, professional, understanding, caring and always communicated with me. I knew I was in good hands.
A.A., Eatons Hill
I appreciate my lawyer’s professional approach and her being on top of my situation.
N.S., Mt Gravatt
Amy, thank you. You have been diligent, accurate and pro-active for the entire duration of my matter. I appreciate it.
R.P., Cleveland
Michael knew what he was talking about.
R.M., Warwick
I really appreciated the happiness of your secretarial staff.
G.C., Clayfield
Thank you, you placed my needs first, you were aware of the need to reach a final result and not get caught up in the personal issues of the other party.
S.L., Moranbah
I like your friendly service and the ability to speak to my solicitor directly.
R.G., Wishart
Your team is professional, warm, friendly and real.
N.R., Crows Nest
I was also always confident that I was getting the very best advice.
T.S., Flinders
May I take this opportunity to express my gratitude to you and your staff for the excellent professional services I received. In a word, priceless.
D.H., Hendra
Michael Lynch Family Lawyers are easy to deal with and their systems are good.
D.T., Ferny Grove
I was very impressed with the first initial interview. Everything was well explained and the advice was honest about what I should expect.
C.M., Morningside
Your staff is knowledgeable, professional and very calm.
A.C., Helensvale
My family lawyer was very helpful in assisting me to combat a very ugly situation without stooping to the low levels that the other solicitor attempted to take us.
M.J., Manly
If I need a family lawyer in the future I’ll be heading to Michael Lynch Family Lawyers again.
C.W., Brookfield
I’m very glad Michael is my lawyer and not the other side’s solicitor.
S.S., Hamilton
Thank you, you kept me sane in a difficult situation and gave me the encouragement and the confidence to keep going. You made me feel extremely comfortable.
A.M., Chambers Flat
At Michael Lynch Family Lawyers I got professional and no nonsense advice, costs were within quoted amounts and my matter was resolved quickly – well done!
L.R., Ascot
Many thanks for your assistance – life is now great – I’m moving on.
J.K., Mansfield
My solicitor provided a personalised service, prompt and quick responses and cost information prior to my commitment.
G.C., Southport
I like that my lawyer treated me like a friend and kept jargon to a minimum. She was easy to contact and kept me informed.
L.R., Samford
Thank you for your ongoing conciliatory approach in this matter and as always I appreciate your level headed advice. I certainly feel that I ended up with the right Solicitor.
S.C., Nundah
A personalised and professional service. Information has been clear and provided timely to assist my decision-making.
S.S., Hamilton
Lovely to deal with and provides a balanced view in what are very difficult circumstances.
A.C., Morningside
Thank you for the outstanding legal advice you have provided and professionalism in which you conduct yourself. I am truly thankful that it was you who represented me.
M.T., Stafford
Michael is very personable and very good at covering the material and explaining the strategy.
J.O., Hawthorne
Michael was the most knowledgeable of all lawyers I spoke to when looking for a lawyer. He showed professionalism.
R.R., Brighton
Thank you for being very personable, professional and always providing me with the most appropriate advice in my times of difficulty. The other party’s lawyers were extremely aggressive, while Michael Lynch Family Lawyers remained calm and professional.
S.D., Parkinson
Amy, thank you for all that you have done during this matter. You impressed me with your professionalism from our initial meeting, and you have proven beyond doubt, to have had the skills and knowledge required. You are a credit to the company, and I would highly recommend you to anyone in a similar situation.
R.P., Cleveland
Thank you for the great newsletter. Your article on “Coping with Christmas” is brilliant – clear, caring and helpful. Thanks again!
C.T., Bribie Island

I have appreciated the way that you and the staff at your firm have handled my situation. I would especially like to mention the professional and caring way my lawyer conducted my case, I am deeply grateful and extremely happy with the results. I will be referring others to your service.

J.H., Wellington Point

Thank you for helping me through this difficult time. You have been caring, compassionate and efficient. Some of my divorcing friends have not been so fortunate. In my mind you are the best family lawyer in Brisbane. If anyone I know needs a good family lawyer, I will tell them to speak to you. Thanks again.

B.T., Clayfield
I was guided through a really difficult time with expertise of Michael Lynch Family Lawyers. I am more than happy with the outcome of mediation.
J.H., Windaroo
Michael, thank you again for your presence here yesterday. We really appreciated the clarity and accessibility of your presentation. It is a rare thing to find somebody who not only has expertise, but also has a skill in communicating it.
J.S., Brisbane

I just wanted to get in touch to say thanks for helping me get through my custody and settlement. Thanks again to you and your staff. You have had a significant positive impact in my kids’ lives!

B.S., Brisbane

Thank you Debra and Helen for all the work you did for me, you both made the process manageable and brought sense to the chaos.

R.B., Toowong

I would like to thank your company Miss Brown for the support and compassion shown while dealing with my matter.

C.M., Brisbane

Thank you very much to everyone at Michael Lynch Family Lawyers. Thank you for helping me get my life back and make a fresh start. To have that fresh start without fear and anxiety is priceless.

A.A., Perth, Your Content Goes Here

“Many thanks to Stephanie for her help and support through this time, I was incredibly impressed with her work.” 

L. K., North Lakes, Your Content Goes Here