Just separated? Handy list of do’s and don’ts before meeting with your family lawyer

Separating from a long-term partner is often a difficult and overwhelming experience. Below are some handy tips to help direct your preparation prior to meeting with one of our family lawyers, and to help us provide you with the most accurate advice possible.

We are happy to offer all prospective clients a free 30 minute initial advice session; please get in touch to book a session.


    1. Think about your best-case scenario – it’s a good idea to consider what you want to retain as part of a property settlement. We can then discuss how achievable this is for you; it’s important to have reasonable expectations going into negotiations.
    2. Build a picture of your financial position – make a list and get an idea of the value of all your assets, liabilities and superannuation. Make a list of all bank accounts and balances, credit card debts and have a look on Carsales and/or Redbook for a rough value of any motor vehicles.
    3. Keep it in the cone of silence – it’s best practice to keep your personal information and legal correspondence private. While it is important to seek support, it’s a good idea to keep the details of your financial position and your ex-partner’s financial position on the down-low during negotiations. This is especially important if there are children involved – the Court will be critical of you for discussing adult matters with the kids.


    1. Don’t crowdsource your legal advice – while it is understandable to want to share your story with family and friends who have had similar experiences, please remember that every relationship is different. What worked for them may not work for you, or be suitable to your circumstances. We don’t need to remind you to consult a qualified doctor rather than Dr Google – in the same vein, it’s best to speak with a family law practitioner who will provide you with tailored advice.
    2. Be transparent – the Court requires your full and frank financial disclosure. Trying to hide funds may come back to bite you later down the track. It makes our job more difficult too; we cannot give you comprehensive and considered advice without accurate information.
    3. Don’t make a decision or agree to an arrangement prematurely. Take the time to get professional advice about a proposal or offer of settlement; it will cost future you time and money trying to undo hasty decision-making.