The following are some of the rules concerning same sex de facto relationships

A person is involved in a de facto relationship with another person, whether of the same or opposite sex, if all of the following conditions occur:

  • They have a shared life to the exclusion of others;
  • They live together or do not live separately on a permanent basis;
  • The relationship is genuine;
  • They are not married to each other;
  • They are not related as family.

It used to be that de facto relationships applied only to heterosexual but due to the amendments in the Family Law Act, the term now covers same sex couples. These amendments recognize the existence of same sex relationships and raise their status to the same level as those of unmarried heterosexual relationships. Furthermore, the children of same sex relationships are given more security and benefits which are at par with the children of married couples. In fact, same sex de facto couples are now enjoying some of the rights and obligations of married couples.

The amendments effectively removed the discrimination between heterosexual and same sex relationships. The following are some of the rules concerning same sex de facto relationships:

  • Same sex couples are not allowed to legally marry in Australia;
  • Same sex couples can own property jointly and have rights to property settlement;
  • A de facto same sex partner is considered as a spouse under intestacy rules;
  • Same sex de facto partners can inherit from each other and can appoint each other power of attorney;
  • A same sex de facto partner can avail of domestic violence protection orders if he/she is abused;
  • A same sex de facto couple can enter into binding financial agreements.

The laws for every state vary with respect to children of same sex de facto couples. For instance, in all states except South Australia, same sex de facto couples are allowed to jointly adopt children. In South Australia same sex couples are eligible for artificial insemination procedures if they have been cohabiting continuously as husband and wife for five years. Under Victoria laws, the female partner of the birth mother is presumed to be the legal parent of any child born if she was the partner at the time of the assisted reproductive technology procedure and she consented to the procedure.



Alan Weiss

22nd March, 2020

Alan Weiss developed after he experienced himself how devastating divorce proceedings can be. I witnessed firsthand my own future security, and that of my familys, being destroyed by acrimonious and costly divorce litigation. I created to help people avoid an experience like this and lose thousands of dollars. Instead the system will assist them in getting on with their lives.