A consent order is a written agreement that is approved by a court. A Consent Orders can cover parenting arrangements for children (a ‘parenting order’) as well as financial arrangements such as property and maintenance.
Consent orders have the same legal force as if they had been made by a judicial officer after a court hearing. You and your former partner can apply for consent orders to be made without going to court.
If proceedings have been started in court before you reach an agreement about the orders you want made by consent, consent orders are still possible. The proposed orders will need to be set out in writing and the parties are usually asked to sign the document which sets them out.
Signing such a document means you agree with the orders being made and will follow the terms stated in the document.
It is important that you understand the meaning and effect of the orders you are seeking.
If you are seeking orders concerning children you should read and consider sections 60B,60CA,60CC,61DA and 65DAA of the Family Law Act.
If you are seeking property orders in relation to a marriage, you should read and consider Section 75 Matters to be taken into consideration in relation to spousal maintenance) and 79 (Alteration of property interests )and Part VIIIB of the Family Law Act.
If you are seeking financial orders as a party to a de facto relationship which has broken down, you should read and consider sections Section 90SK (Geographical requirement),Section 90SL (Declaration of interests in property), Section 90SM (Alteration of property interests) and Part VIIIAB of the Family Law Act.
If you are seeking an order or injunction binding a third party you should read and consider Part VIIIAA and if a party to a de facto relationship, you should also read and consider section Section 90TA of the Family Law Act.
If you are seeking spouse maintenance orders, you should read and consider section 72 (Right of spouse to maintenance),Section 74 (Power of court in spousal maintenance proceedings )and Section 75 of the Family Law Act.
You should consider obtaining a legal advice about the effect of any proposed consent orders. We have family lawyers who can advise and assist you with the preparation of the consent orders or other family law matters.