Consent Orders and Property Settlement in Family Law

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If a separated couple has reached an agreement on their property settlement, it can be formalised through a consent order with the help of a Perth family lawyer.


Separation can be a relatively simple process for the majority of couples. This can lead to complacency with people often not realising the importance of formalising the terms of their separation by way of a Family Court Order.

It is possible to formalise the agreement through Consent Orders, lodged with the Family Court, which provides certainty and formal closure of the parties’ financial relationship of children’s Orders.

However, if you don’t take the required steps to formalise your agreement, you could expose yourself to significant risks such as claims being made in the future that would include all assets that have been accumulated after the relationship.

Consent Orders are vital to ensure that your settlement agreement is final and legally binding.


What makes the Application for Consent Orders such an appealing way to settle?


The principal reason is that parties can seek a legally binding Court order for property settlement without having to go through the stress, expense, of a court case. An Application for Consent Orders is a form of consent that allows parties to settle their property disputes without ever having to enter a courtroom.

Instead, parties negotiate a settlement and complete a Form 11 Application which is then filed with the Court.

The requirement for legal advice is understanding your entitlements in order to negotiate a settlement that is both fair and equitable.

Consent Orders can also be obtained to settle property and make parenting arrangements.

For questions on the parenting side of things, please don’t hesitate to contact our friendly team at Burra-Robinson Family Lawyers.


What are Consent Orders?


A consent order is a written agreement between you and your former partner that is approved by the Family Court of Australia. All parties must consent to the agreement. Consent Orders cannot be applied for without the consent of your former partner and vice versa.

You and your ex-partner must complete the Application for Consent Orders. Minutes of Consent Orders must also be completed in conjunction with the Form 11

An Application for Consent Orders needs specific information. It includes information about the relationship, income values, disclosure of all assets and liabilities, superannuation, and details about each party. Also, you must provide details about the proposed division of property and the settlement agreement. Your application will be processed internally by the court, so you won’t need to appear at any court hearings.


Are my Consent Orders Legally Binding?


Consent Orders are made by the Family Court of Australia. They are legally binding documents. The Order is called a Consent Order when both parties agree to its making.

A Registrar (a type of judicial officer that acts a little like a judge) will approve your application if the Court considers that the agreement is just and equitable and place the date (and the court seal, which is a red stamp) on the Application for Consent Order documents.

The sealed Consent Order becomes final and binding as of that date. This means that all parties are bound to comply with the consent orders as set out in the set agreement.

A party may breach Consent Orders. This could have both financial and practical consequences if enforcement proceedings are required to enforce an Order.

An Application for Consent Orders is a simple and effective way to settle the property. It gives you the legal protection of a court order. You don’t have to go through lengthy and expensive court proceedings or even step into a courtroom.

Although parties are not required by law to have a Perth family lawyer for this process, they may choose to instruct one to help them draft and file an Application for Consent Orders. As problems may arise, we do suggest hiring a divorce lawyer to ensure the smoothest and best outcome for you and your loved ones as these documents can be complex and require specialist advice.


What are the steps to obtaining a Consent Order?


You will need to complete and apply for Consent Orders, which are made up of two documents Form 11 and Minute of Consent Orders.

To ensure the court approves and seals the Consent Minute of Order, the documents must be correctly drafted and aligned with each other. If you have any questions, please contact us at Burra-Robison Family Lawyers.


How to Apply for Consent Orders


Two main documents must be filed with each application for consent orders. These documents together allow the court to determine the facts of each party and the type of property settlement order they seek.


Application for Consent Orders (ACO) document


The court will need all the facts and information regarding the parties’ situation, their relationship, and the proposed division.


Consent Minutes Order (CMO) document

 Consent Minutes of Order documents are responsible for telling the court what legal orders you want the court to make.

Consent Minutes of Order have specific legal language and formatting. They must be correctly drafted to prevent your application from being rejected. Consent Minutes of Order documents are usually best prepared by Perth divorce lawyers.


What other alternatives exist to consent orders?


You can save time, stress, and thousands of dollars by negotiating an informal property settlement agreement. Next, you’ll need to convert your informal agreement into a legally binding and formal property settlement. As Perth divorce lawyers, we can assist you with this process.

Your informal agreement is not binding. It doesn’t matter if you sign it and write it down before a Justice of the Peace. However, it won’t be legally binding under Australian law.

It is crucial to make sure that your settlement is legally binding to avoid the possibility of one-party claiming property settlement.

There are only three options to reach a legally binding property settlement agreement in Australia.

  1. Consent Orders-Application
  2. Financial Agreements (also known as “Binding Financial Agreements”)
  3. Adversarial litigation in court


What documents do I need, and why should I hire a lawyer?


A Perth divorce lawyer will help determine the best document for your needs and explain the limitations of each. They can help minimise potential pitfalls and ensure that documents are written in a way that is easy to understand. Every order includes a provision that allows the Register to sign documents on behalf of a party in breach. Perth family lawyers also detail what happens in case a default occurs, so there are no additional costly disputes about enforcing the orders.

There are many options to minimise legal costs in a Perth divorce or separation. However, it’s important not to skimp on the formalisation and delivery of a property contract. When it comes down to the drafting of legal documents, money spent is money saved. If you need a Perth family lawyer, contact Burra-Robinson Family Layers in Perth today.