Family Law Negotiation

How do I know if I was in a de facto relationship?

Trying to determine whether or not you are in a de facto relationship can be a difficult task. For married couples, a marriage ceremony clearly indicates when the parties’ relationship falls under the Family Law Act. However, there is no clear marker that signifies when a couple becomes de facto. As such, it can be difficult to determine whether you are entitled to any property division under the Family Law Act when your relationship breaks down.

There are no definite criteria for establishing a de facto relationship and the court can consider any factors which is deems relevant to deciding whether you were in a de facto relationship. The legislation provides some factors which can be used as a guideline however, it is not a complete list of factors that the Court can take into account. Some of the factors the Court may take into consideration include:

  • the duration of the relationship;
  • the nature and extent of a common residence;
  • whether there is a sexual relationship;
  • the degree of financial dependence or interdependence, including any arrangements for financial support, between them;
  • the ownership, use and acquisition of property;
  • the degree or mutual commitment to a shared life;
  • whether the relationship is or was registered under a prescribed law of a Sate or Territory as a prescribed kind of relationship;
  • the care and support of children;
  • the reputation and public aspect of the relationship.

If your relationship has broken down and you’re unsure whether you’re entitled to a property division, get in touch with us today for your free 30-minute consultation by calling 8391 8411 or emailing us at [email protected]