From this Day Forward>> -Family Court Consent Orders

By Perpetua Kish, Principal Lawyer

If you have reached an agreement about parenting and/or financial arrangements and want to formalise the agreement to make it legal, you can apply to the Family Court of Australia for an Application for consent orders (“Family Court Consent Orders”).


You may be wondering when and how to do this – or why it is even necessary if matters between you and your ex are amicable.

There are plenty of reasons to document your agreement. Here are some good ones:

  1. You can save a significant amount of money
    If you’re transferring property under your consent orders you will be able to save thousands in stamp duty. Family law transfers are considered exempt transfers in most states and territories.
    Having consent orders in place also means that you do not have to go through the court process and can resolve your dispute without incurring the costs of lengthy court proceedings.
  2. For peace of mind
    Applying for consent orders will enable you to keep a well-documented, binding and enforceable record of your agreement. Both parties can rest assured knowing that they will be legally protected.
  3. For certainty
    Documenting your agreement by way of Family Court Consent Orders brings certainty. The court considers consent orders as your full and final agreement. One party cannot come back after a few years and ask for more super or money or another property. Reaching an agreement and choosing to keep the arrangement informal,  on the other hand, will not be considered full and final and your former partner may be tempted to come back for “another bite of the cherry” and any assets you have accumulated in the intervening period could potentially form part of the assets available for division.


Family Court Consent Orders can be filed any time after separation but should to be filed within 12 months of a divorce or within two years of the end of a de facto relationship if parties wish to seek orders from the court. If you are filing beyond this time frame, you should read and consider section 44 of the Family Law Act 1975. You must consent to the Court making the proposed property and maintenance orders or agree to enter into a Binding Financial Agreement, and if not, you will need to seek permission from the Court to file the application ‘out of time’. This process is costly and your request to have the matter heard may be declined.


Even though Family Court Consent Orders are submitted to the Court, the process is administrative and you are not required to appear at Court. 

We offer a quick and affordable way to legally document your agreement by consent orders through our online legal solution, Forward>>.

We can help you through the entire process or just part of it, depending on your particular needs and budget.


For more information about Forward>> or separation agreements generally, give us a call on (02) 6189 1748. Our lawyers can discuss your needs and goals with you and help you finalise your settlement agreements quickly and cost-effectively.

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Outside of Balance, I am an adjunct lecturer and assessor with the College of Law in the ACT. In this role, I lecture and mentor future lawyers in the ACT and surrounding regions, as they complete their Practical Legal Training (which is the course you are required to complete to be able to practice as a lawyer).

When I am not lawyering I love to travel and have already made it to 18 countries across Europe and Asia. My personal goal is to travel to every continent, including Antarctica. My favourite destination so far is Lauterbrunnen in Switzerland, where I skydived over the Swiss Alps!

My innovative approach to law has seen me, and Balance Family Law recognised with over 23 national and international awards and accolades since 2020 including the prestigious Lawyer’s Weekly Family Law Partner of the Year 2021, Australian Law Awards Sole Practitioner of the Year 2021, Australian Law Awards Boutique Law Firm of the Year 2020 and the Gold Ausmumpreneur Award for a Service Business in 2020 and 2021. I have also received consecutive Chief Minister’s Awards for Excellence for my work with families and children on the frontline during my time working in child protection. In 2022 and 2023, I was invited to be a Judge at the Lawyers Weekly 30 Under 30 Awards, and Partner of the Year Awards, and the National Ausmumpreneur Awards.

As one of Australia’s most respected family lawyers and a gamechanger in the lawyer space, I look forward to working with you to navigate this challenging time in your life.