9 Mar 2017

Divorce on the rise



It is apparent from the 2015 divorce statistics released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, that Perth is seeing a rise in the divorce rate.



In 2015,   48,517 divorces were granted in Australia, which is a 4.3% increase from the 2014 results.



Western Australia had the largest increase in the number of divorces granted in 2015, with a total of 4,992 divorces granted which was an increase of 10.5%, from 2014.



Try before you buy



It is no secret that there has been an increase in cohabitation prior to marriage over the last twenty years.



The University of Melbourne conducted the HILDA Survey on Families, Incomes and Jobs, which was published in 2012. The results showed that de facto couples were six times more likely to separate than de facto couples who married after cohabitating. There are many reasons why it is believed that there is a high separation rate of de facto couples who do not get married, some of which we have discussed below.




  1. Parties are moving in together as part of the selection process prior to marriage.

    People are taking their time whilst cohabiting as a de facto couple to get to know everything about one another before taking the plunge into marriage.


    2.  Parties may tend to cohabitate for convenience

        With the ever increasing property market, lack of employment opportunities and higher cost of 
        living parties may seek to cohabitate to cut the cost of every day life. 
        Therefore the decision to live as a de facto couple in many cases is a commercial decision rather 
         than a romantic one.


    3.
Weddings are costing a pretty penny


       
        De facto couples may face a higher rate of separation due to the increasing cost of a wedding in 
        Australia. Data from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission shows that the 
        average cost for a wedding in Australia is $36,200. Therefore, parties may cohabitate longer in 
        order to save for the expense of the wedding, in some cases people may take years to save. This 
        period of extended cohabitation may ultimately lead to separation. Alternatively, the financial 
        pressure which the potential cost of a wedding puts on parties may also cause relationship stress.



Implications



Living in a de facto relationship gives some parties a false sense of security; with many holding the view that as long as they are not married they are not likely to be subject to property settlement.



Unfortunately for many parties they only discover that they are vulnerable to a property settlement claim following the demise of their de facto relationship.



If you are currently living with a boyfriend or girlfriend and your relationship fulfils one or more of these requirements, you can be considered to be in a de facto relationship:



1)    There has been a de facto relationship between the parties for at least 2 years; There is a child of the relationship who is under the age of 18 years and the failure of the Court to intervene to make an order for property settlement would result in a serious injustice for the partner caring for or responsible for the child;



2)    The Applicant or person who is seeking property settlement has made substantial contributions, these are not just financial contributions, these contributions also include non-financial contributions and contributions as the homemaker or parent; and



3)    In order for the Family Court of Western Australia to have jurisdiction both parties must have lived in Western Australia for one third of their relationship alternatively one of the parties must have made their substantial contributions in Western Australia.



If you are in a defacto relationship and are concerned or unsure about your entitlements as a de facto partner you should seek specific advice from a specialist Family Lawyer.



This is general information only, and does not constitute specific legal advice. If you would like further information in relation to this matter or other legal matters please contact our offices on Freecall 1800 609 945 or email us now.

100 years of Supporting West Australians

"My family law experience with Mary Roubos has restored my faith in solicitors in general. She not only demonstrated her legal expertise and flair, but also showed a compassionate and understanding nature during the lengthy process. I felt that Mary went above and beyond her obligations as my solicitor, and really listened to me. I would highly recommend Mary and her assistant Debra Wilson, who also demonstrated professionalism and excellence on all levels."

Renee Frangiosa

"Always fast and thorough service. Thank you"

Sitka Pil

"I found Ben most helpful and always prompt to let me know where things were at. Will definately use Ben again and will recommend to others."

Gerrit and Mary Van Bralal

"We wish to express our thanks for your help in attending to our mother/ wife's will - Mrs Grace Margaret Vessey. Aimee was extremely helpful and easy to deal with. We are greatful for your help with our affairs."

Ms Rosalyn Norman, Mr Stephen Vessey

"Thank you ever so much for all your hard work on my case Nicole, I really appreciate everything you did for me."

Workers Compensation Client

"Thank you for such great assistance with the transaction of Flying Domestics on behalf of Lorna Good. It has been such such a pleasure to work with the HHG Legal Group and I look forward to working with you in the future."

Jim Goodwin

"Simon Creek and his team were at all times empathic, professional and confident.  My matter needed to be addressed within a pressing time frame, and their availability at short notice and contact after hours was much appreciated.  It caused me considerable stress, but having such a thoroughly reliable and competent team to call on helped me to feel in control. Although I hope not to need their services again in future, I would be confident in doing so!"

Dr Lana Bell

"A good outcome is what we can expect.  A great outcome is a sign of a company which does the very best for their clients. A very big thank you to Daniel Morris for showing empathy towards my small and much needed legal action.

To HHG Legal Group, thank you for a great outcome.  I would recommend your company to anyone seeking legal services."

Jan Atkinson

"Your support this morning was amazingly kind, not to mention your totally reassuring competence, knowledge and wisdom that you used on my behalf.  It was extremely reassuring to have your knowledgeable support, and I particularly appreciated your real and obvious kindness to me. It means so much at a very difficult time. I'm so grateful to you."

Family Law Client

"I highly recommend the services of HHG Legal Group for both personal and business needs. HHG is very up to date with legal advice and are in tune with the evolution of business."

Robert Forgione

"Sue and myself would like to thank HHG for the way in which our dispute was resolved. It is good to know that people who do not have an understanding of the legal system can rely on people like yourself and the company you represent. Without the assistance of HHG we could not have resolved the problems we were facing, not only have we resolved the issue but the outcome was more favourable then we would have thought possible. Thank-you and please pass on our thanks to all those who worked behind the scenes to achieve this outcome."

Rick and Sue Ashton

"Janene was very professional and we established a good rapport quickly. The subject of death and wills can be quite confronting to deal with, however Janene's approach was soft and accommodating."

Lynette Livesey

"A big thank you to HHG for their professional service, continued support, and wide range of legal knowledge. Our clients have given us nothing but kind words regarding HHG Legal Group and so we have no hesitation in referring and recommending Simon Creek and HHG Legal Group for their outstanding services and legal expertise."

Nigel Plowman, Director at McKinley Plowman & Associates

"Simon is a friendly and practical legal advisor. I have received great feedback from the clients I have referred to him and his team at HHG Legal Group."

Richard Beal, Director at BDO

"Over the last few years, I have been impressed by Simon’s legal ability, management skills, entrepreneurial spirit, personal integrity and people skills. He appears to be that rare breed of lawyer – both knowledgeable and commercial."

Michael Malone, Founder of iiNet

"Our family has been a client of HHG Legal Group over many years and most recently in 2013 and February 2014.  Business has included drawing up of wills for three generations and preparing of probate for my father in law.

I would have no hesitation in recommending HHG Legal Group to anyone requiring such services."

Bernice Climie

"You should be congratulated for the manner in which your staff address clients and we found our dealings with your company, once again a very pleasant experience and we would like to truly thank you for your efforts."

Steve Harvey and Jane Powell

"HHG Legal were absolutely fantastic. Extremely responsive and brought calm to our chaotic family situation through their knowledge and caring attitude. Extremely professional from our very first contact with them and they expertly guided our family though the required legal process over almost a 12 month period."

Amanda Williamson

"Fantastic team! They really care about their client. Tim Colcutt is a 'go that extra mile' guy who gives his client his all. I can't recommend HHG and Tim enough."

Kerry Samson

"Anne Hurley has been such a valuable resource of information and advice, her wealth of knowledge is truly impressive and her ability to explain things in a way that makes them easily understood is very much appreciated. Anne and the wider HHG Legal Group are always a pleasure to work with."

Giorgia Parham

"I had a fantastic lawyer in Anne Hurley. She helped me out a great deal with good, sound advice in a friendly , professional manner. First class, thanks Anne"

Graeme Hammond

"Marine Plant Systems has been working with HHG Legal Group for a few years now and they continually provide first class service. Their professional advice has been invaluable to our company."

Carolin Grimm

"We were kept up to date at all times. Pricing was always updated over the time period so we remained "in budget". Personal access to someone whenever I had questions. All in all a great experience without too much fuss."

Rosslyn Tasker - COO AltusQ Pty Ltd

"Good service you can count on."

Miles Lee

"HHG Legal Group have provided outstanding support as I have taken the journey of buying a business, their professionalism is beyound reproach. Their assistance throughout the Due Diligernce process have been invaluable, I would fully recommend them."

Mark Armitage

"I have experienced how good the HHG Legal Group team are over the last 6 years and highly recommend them."

Lyn Hawkins

"Very friendly and efficient service - what a pleasure working with Anne."

Jacques Taylor

"I highly recommend Daniel from HHG Legal Mandurah. When dealing with a complicated legal property matter recently I was extremely impressed by Daniel's honesty and integrity and the legal advice I received. I am very happy with the service from HHG Legal."

Tony Walker