Modern Australian Magazine

Document you need for a divorce

  • Written by Australian Family Lawyers


Divorce is a difficult thing to go through for everyone. So, if it’s something you or your spouse are thinking about, the formal process of it all can seem quite overwhelming.

Before you start the process of divorce, there are a few things to consider:

  • Have you been separated at least 12 months?

  • Is one (or both) of you an Australian citizen by birth, descent or have you been granted citizenship?

  • Does one (or both) of you intend to live in Australia indefinitely?

  • Have you lived in Australia for at least 12 months before filing for divorce?

Are you separated?

The next step is to separate because in Australia, you must be separated for at least 12 months before you apply for a divorce. This includes something called “separation under the one roof” as the law understands that even though you’ve separated, you may still have to live together and keep some of your normal household duties – such as cooking together or one party doing washing for the other. If this is the case, you will have to prove to the court’s satisfaction that you were indeed separated for the 12 months.

What documents do you need?

Once you have been separated for 12 months, either under the same or separate roofs, you’ll need to begin filing for divorce. And when you’re ready to do this, you’ll need the following documents:

  • Marriage certificate

  • Australian citizenship certificate or passport

  • An affidavit if:

    • You’ve been married less than two years and can’t attend marriage counselling;

    • You’re not able to get a copy of the marriage certificate;

    • You’ve been living under the one roof during the separation;

    • Either of your names are different to those on the marriage certificate; or

    • You don’t know the address of your spouse

How to apply for divorce

You can either apply for divorce separately or together with your spouse and depending on your circumstances, you can do it by yourself or with the help of a family lawyer. If you do decide to do it separately, once you’ve completed the application, you’ll need to serve a copy to your spouse – which again you can choose to do unassisted or with the help of a lawyer.

Your divorce is filed, what next?

Once your divorce is filed a Divorce Order will be made. This means that your divorce will take effect after 1 month and 1 day. Once this has happened you have up to 12 months to start proceedings (file an application) for any property or spousal maintenance agreements. This is also a good time to update your will as once the Divorce Order is made, any reference to your husband or wife will no longer apply.

What if there are children involved?

Making parenting arrangements can be a long and tedious process due to the nature of what is being agreed upon. Because of this, this process happens separately to the actual divorce or dissolving of the marriage.

Divorce can be a tricky and highly emotional time, even if you’re on friendly terms with each other. This can make it very difficult and overwhelming to navigate the system, especially if the legal world is something that’s completely new to you. Thankfully, there are a range of professionals that can help such as, a family lawyer, financial advisor or tax accountant and a therapist or counsellor for both you and your children.

Australia Today

Why should you invest in cryptocurrency

News Company

There has been growing interest in online currency, or cryptocurrency, for some time. Millions of people all over the world have already taken advantage of Bitcoin, Ethereum and other digital money. But for those people uninitiated in using Blockchain technology, what does this all mean? Can anyon...

how Australian politicians would bridge the trust divide

Mark Evans, Professor of Governance and Director of Democracy 2025 - bridging the trust divide at Old Parliament House, University of Canberra

Unsurprisingly, Australian politicians are happier than their constituents with the way our democracy works.ShutterstockWe hear a lot from citizens about the failings of Australian democracy and the need for reform. But how do politicians view the growing trust divide? We set out to answer this que...

We can’t drought-proof Australia, and trying is a fool's errand

Emma Kathryn White, PhD Candidate, Infrastructure Engineering, University of Melbourne

The push to 'drought-proof' Australia is dangerous nonsense.AAP Image/Mick TsikasThere is a phrase in the novel East of Eden that springs to mind every time politicians speak of “drought-proofing” Australia:And it never failed that during the dry years the people forgot about the rich ye...

Our land abounds in nature strips – surely we can do more than mow a third of urban green space

Adrian Marshall, Lecturer, Landscape Architecture and Urban Ecology, University of Melbourne

Even the standard grassed nature strip has value for local wildlife.Michelle/Flickr, CC BY-NC-NDYou may mock the national anthem by singing “Our land abounds in nature strips” but what you might not know is how true that is. In Melbourne, for example, more than a third of all public gree...

Facebook's online workers are sick of being treated like bots

Jennifer Beckett, Lecturer in Media and Communications, University of Melbourne

Mark Zuckerberg and other tech CEOs may have to take notice of their workers' complaints.Aaron Schwarz / ShutterstockReports of Facebook moderators’ appalling working conditions have been making headlines worldwide. Workers say they are burning out as they moderate vast flows of violent conten...

Holidays & Travel

Winter fun in Colorado

Colorado is one of the most visited states in the United States due to the numerous beautiful places evenly distributed in every part of the State. There are lots of...

Essential Personal Hygiene Tips for Traveling

Staying healthy and maintaining good personal hygiene are two of the most important aspects of traveling, but it might not always be easy to achieve. As crucial it is to...

Top 3 Affordable Activities To Do In Los Angeles

When we hear about Los Angeles, we immediately thought of Hollywood. It is because it is the country’s film and television industry. It is where most studios are situated. Located in...

Best Paradise Islands You Should Visit in Australia

Australia is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, thanks to its thousands-strong assembly of beautiful paradise islands. Each of the continent’s islands has its own wonderful...

Most Popular Mexican Destinations for Australian Visitors

While this may come as a surprise to many, Australians are one of the three nationalities that spend the most money during their trips to Mexico. According to Sofia De...

Most popular Latin American destinations for Australians

Australians are born travellers. Despite our remote location, we love to hop on a jet and take off for an indulgent adventure in an exotic location. As such, it shouldn’t...

Go on vacation without letting yourself go

Going on a holiday is great, especially when you deserve a vacation. But there are two things that are annoying to deal with when you come home: the fact that...

What to Do When Traveling From Australia to USA

Planning a trip to USA with your friends for the first time? Well, then you have miraculously landed at the right page. We have done all the homework to prepare...

5 Top Offbeat Things to do in Hong Kong

Hong Kong sure has some quirky attractions hidden up its sleeve. And if you are looking for some unusual sights and unique fun activities to experience, you won’t be disappointed...

Fashion & Beauty

Top 5 Designer Sunglasses That Celebrities Are Wearing

Celebrities live such a public life that sometimes they need to be able to move around without being easily recognized. And what helps them is a little disguise using sunglasses...

Guys, Are You Making These 5 Critical Skincare Mistakes?

According to a survey carried out by Mintel, half of all UK men use facial skincare products as part of their daily routine. Once a taboo, an increasing amount of...

How to Dress for Work: Chic 9-5 Style

Do you want to look professional and put-together yet stay true to your personal style? Is it even possible to make your work outfits look chic and interesting and not...

What Men Like in Women’s Fashion

Men are great admirers of women’s fashion. When a woman walks down the street while wearing an attractive piece of clothing, men are always going to notice it. Of course...

5 ways to hydrate your hair and skin while you travel

Holidays are one of the most exciting and looked forward to times of the year, especially around the winter months where many people shoot off across the world to enjoy...

An All-in-one Guide to Buying Women’s Glasses

Getting your first pair of women’s glasses is pretty exciting; will you get retro cat eye frames or minimalist lightweight ones? Not only can specs improve your vision and potentially...

Popular articles from Modern Australian

Best Out of Waste in New South WalesGlamorous Gifts - 5 Luxe Giving Options When Only the Best Will DoFood for collagenIs Rhinoplasty Right for You?Winter fun in ColoradoSlots SecretsEssential Personal Hygiene Tips for TravelingTop 3 Affordable Activities To Do In Los AngelesTop 4 Reasons Why a Gas Fireplace Is an Ideal SolutionAdvantages of Using an Insulin PumpMaths – when it’s time to break free of your misbeliefsStrictly For Women:5 Steps To Top 5 Designer Sunglasses That Celebrities Are WearingBest Paradise Islands You Should Visit in AustraliaMost Popular Mexican Destinations for Australian Visitors