5 Things To Consider Before Getting Married

The legalities of marriage can be complicated and confusing, and it’s a good idea to make sure that you’re aware of your obligations before you commit to any relationship. I’d recommend speaking with a good family lawyer to make sure that you know just what’s required of you.

To help you get an idea about some of the things you need to think about, I’ve put together this list of the top five things to consider – in a legal sense – before getting married. As always, this isn’t and shouldn’t be treated as legal advice. Make sure that you do your own research before making any major decisions.

  1. Prenuptial agreements

Although some people won’t even consider prenuptial agreements, I’d recommend at least touching on the subject with your partner.

A prenuptial agreement basically allows you and your partner to keep your finances separated to some extent, which makes things easier in the case of a divorce or separation.

You should definitely consider a prenuptial agreement if one partner is entering the relationship with significantly more assets than the other.

Read More

3 Things to Look for When Choosing a Family Lawyer

Choosing the right family lawyer for your case can be crucial for your success. It doesn’t really matter if you’re going through a divorce, fighting a custody battle or trying to agree on a fair spousal maintenance amount, family lawyers can help.

We understand that it can sometimes be hard to choose the right lawyer for your case. To help you make your decisions, we’ve put together a quick list of the top three things to look for when searching for a family lawyer. They include:

  1. Proof of previous experience

It’s obviously extremely important to make sure that you choose a lawyer with experience in your field. Failing to do so can lead to a range of problems, including results that aren’t really what you’re expecting.

Most family lawyers will happily provide you with details of previous cases that they’ve worked, especially if it’s likely to lead to you choosing their services. Narrow down your choices to a select group of lawyers and ask for evidence of their experience before making any major choices.

You should also ask them for any qualifications that they’re got above a simple law degree. A lawyer who has specialised and done further training in a certain field is likely to be a better choice.

Read More

How Can A Lawyer Help With An Overseas Child Custody Dispute?

Resolving international child custody disputes can be extremely difficult, largely due to the fact that different countries have different family law systems. Finding a lawyer who has the skills and experience to take on your case can be hard enough, and the costs of international disputes can range to tens of thousands of dollars.

Ultimately, the best thing to do if you’re considering opening an international child custody dispute will be to speak with your local family lawyer. They will be able to give you advice on the best way to proceed, helping you make informed decisions based on international law.

When do international custody disputes arise?

Ultimately, international child custody disputes are complicated matters which need to be treated individually. Custody disputes can arise in a number of circumstances, but there are two which are common:

  1. When a child is born to parents from different countries who then separate and can’t agree which country the child should be raised in.
  2. When two parents separate and one attempts to take custody of their children by moving overseas, hoping that the law won’t follow them.

Fortunately, there are conventions in place which are designed to simplify child custody disputes and make things easier for estranged parents.

Read More

Splitting Assets Post Separation – How Does It Work?

Separating from a partner can be difficult on both a mental and an emotional level. However, separations usually involve more than just splitting up with your significant other – in many cases, you will have to figure out some method of splitting assets.

Employing a decent family lawyer is a good idea when it comes to dividing your assets post-separation. However, a lot of people don’t realise just how the asset division process works, and are therefore taken advantage of unknowingly.

With this in mind, we’ve put together a brief summary of how asset division post separation works. Remember, everything below is meant only as a guide – make sure that you speak to a decent lawyer before making any binding decisions.

Under What Circumstances Will Our Assets Have To Be Separated?

Generally, you and your former partner will have to come to some agreement about the separation of your assets when you’ve either been married or are considered to have been in a de facto relationship. The exact circumstances surrounding de facto relationships can be unclear, so it’s a good idea to seek clarification from your local family lawyer.

Read More

5 Things To Consider When Divorcing A Foreign National

Divorces are usually complicated and emotional matters which can take significant amounts of time to deal with. Divorces involving foreign nationals can be even more complicated, especially if one of the partners doesn’t have Australian citizenship.

It’s always a good idea to discuss your options with a family lawyer when going through an international divorce. However, I’ve put together a short list of five things that you should absolutely consider before you divorce a foreign national – or indeed, if you’re a foreigner being divorced by an Australian citizen.

  1. Residency rights

If the spouse that you’re separating from doesn’t have Australian citizenship then you will need to consider their right to live and work in Australia. This is especially important if you have children together, because things can become very complicated when two parents are forced to live in different countries.

In this case, you might be best off speaking to an immigration lawyer to determine whether your former partner will retain their living rights following your divorce. In many cases they will – especially if children are involved – but it’s still important to ask the question.

  1. Your finances

This is relevant to any divorce, but particularly important when you’re separating from a foreigner. If your former partner is planning on returning to their home country then it’s important to make sure that your finances are in order before they leave, otherwise things can get very complicated.

Read More

Getting a Partner Visa for Your Foreign Spouse

If you’re in a relationship with a foreign national then you might be considering bringing them back to Australia. While this is possible, it’s not always easy to do. For some people, the paperwork can be overwhelming, which is where a decent family lawyer can help. For other people, it’s simply understanding the process that’s difficult.

Ultimately, the most important thing that you need to do if you want to bring your foreign partner back to Australia is get them a visa. Depending on their nationality, this can be hard to do. However, it’s usually possible, especially if you can prove that you’ve been in a relationship for some time.

In this article we’ll outline the process of getting a partner visa for your foreign spouse (or spouse to be). We will also look at the ways a decent immigration or family lawyer can help you get your visa with the least amount of trouble possible.

Why Do I Need A Partner Visa?

If you’re in a serious relationship with a foreign national who doesn’t have residential rights in Australia then you will need to consider getting them a partner visa if you want them to move here. This is difficult, but it’s more than possible to do, especially if you’re willing to spend the time and money to do it right.

Although it’s hard to get a partner visa, it’s usually worth it. In many cases, it might be the only way for your spouse or partner to stay in Australia permanently. Unfortunately, there are usually a lot of conditions that you have to meet before you apply for a Australian spouse visa.

Read More

Do I Have The Right To Challenge A Will?

Wills can be complicated legal documents which have the power to change people’s lives forever – in both good and bad ways. Unfortunately, you might not always agree with the contents of someone’s will once they’re passed away, especially if they haven’t left you an inheritance that you feel you’re entitled to.

But, there are a few things that you can do. In some cases, you actually do have the right to challenge a will in Australia, and I’m going to look at this in more detail through the rest of this article.

It’s important to note that different Australian states have slightly different laws when it comes to writing a will and a person’s ability to contest a will. Because of this, I’ve used Victoria as an example through the rest of this article. But, the rules are similar throughout most of Australia.

Why Would I Want To Contest A Will?

Generally, people contest a will when they either feel like they’ve been left out, despite deserving at least some inheritance, or when they feel like too much has been left to certain parties. Some common situations involving will disputes include:

  • When a large portion of a person’s estate is left to a relatively new partner.
  • When a person’s will may have been influenced by another person or people with a vested interest.
  • When you feel that you’ve been unfairly excluded from a person’s will.

Ultimately, it doesn’t always matter how much you want to contest a will. You do have to meet certain criteria before you’re even eligible to.

Read More

What Is Estate Planning And Why Should I Think About It When I’m Writing My Will?

If you’re thinking about writing your first will and putting your affairs in order to simplify things for your loved ones in the case of your passing, you might have heard about estate planning. It’s a term that pops up from time to time, but most people don’t really understand what it means.

It’s important to understand that estate planning is not the same thing as writing a will. If you’re interested in finding out more about it and whether or not it could work for you, you should speak to a financial planning specialist.

However, I’ve put together a quick guide to estate planning and when it should be used to help you get started.

What Is Estate Planning?

Put simply, estate planning involves putting together a detailed plan for your estate in the event of your passing. It’s designed to make sure that the right beneficiaries receive what’s intended for them, to reduce the amount of tax you pay as much as possible, and to make sure that any minor children are taken care of.

Your estate effectively includes everything that you own. This stretches through physical assets, digital assets, property, cash, and anything else with financial or monetary value.

Read More

Understanding Data and Privacy – How Can a Commercial Lawyer Help?

Many modern businesses are data driven, making decisions based on information collected from their customers, from the people who visit their websites, and from a range of other sources. However, the collection of such data carries with it a range of responsibilities.

As a business owner, it’s important to understand what responsibilities you have with respect to people’s data and privacy. If you don’t, you could quickly find yourself in trouble with the law. The experience of a commercial lawyer who is trained in consumer data and privacy law will be invaluable to you, and you should consider working with one to make sure that you’re not breaking any laws.

In this article we’ll have a quick look at big data – what is it, how is it used, and what are your responsibilities. We’ll also have a quick look at the ways a commercial lawyer can help you manage your data and privacy responsibilities.

What is meant by ‘data’?

In this sense, data means any information that you collect from or about people who interact with your business in some way.

You might collect this information without customers knowing – in which case you have to make sure that you’re not breaking any privacy laws. Alternatively, a lot of businesses collect data through things like customer satisfaction surveys.

Read More