De Facto Relationships: “Contracting Out” of the Family Law Act

By Carlos Turini – Family Law Specialist

In a separate article, De Facto Partners’ Property Disputes Now in the Family Court, we described the major amendments recently introduced to the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) from 1 March 2009 to allow former partners in a de facto relationship involved in a property dispute to bring an application in the Family Court or the Federal Magistrate Court.

The amendments to the Family Law Act also introduce provisions which will allow parties in a de facto relationship to enter into a cohabitation agreement basically “contracting out” of the provisions of the Act.

Such an agreement could provide that each party to a relationship has “separate assets” and the other party is not entitled to make a claim under the Act for a property adjustment in future in relation to the separate assets.

In the same manner that parties now may enter into agreement on the expectation of a marriage (‘pre nuptial agreements) and agreements during the marriage, parties to a de facto relationship will be able to enter into similar agreements under the Family Law Act.

For more information or to make an appointment please contact:

Carlos Turini at: or call Carlos on: 02 6206 1300

Further Reading:

Pre Nuptial Agreements

De Facto Relationships and Superannuation Splitting

De Facto Property Disputes – Now in the Family Court