If you and your partner decide to separate you don’t have to do anything to make it official, but a separation agreement can help to keep things manageable. It will help make sure you’re both clear about the details of your separation, especially if you have children, joint finances or property together.
A separation agreement is an agreement that says that you and your spouse or partner have decided to live apart. It’s not compulsory to have a separation agreement, but it can be a useful record of the decisions you make when you separate – for example, on the arrangements for care of children, or how you’ll divide up your property.

The agreement usually includes the date on which you agreed to separate. If the two of you are married or in a civil union and you later decide to apply for a divorce, you can use the separation agreement as evidence that you’ve lived apart for the required two years.

You can choose to register the agreement in the Family Court as a consent order, which makes it legally enforceable, like a court order. If you want to separate and your partner doesn’t, you can file an application with the Family Court. Your partner can then choose whether to defend the application or not. If they do, you’ll both have to attend a hearing in front of a judge at the Family Court.

Here at The Law Shop, we can help you get things sorted. Contact us for advice – 0800 LAW SHOP –