Consent Orders or a Binding Financial Agreement?
Whether parties choose Consent Orders or a Binding Financial Agreement (BFA), the final outcome will be the same. Both processes are effective to make their agreement legal and enforceable.
Many parties and lawyers prefer to use consent orders because, in the process of obtaining the orders from the Court, there is a degree of involvement and supervision from the Court and, therefore, it is more likely that the process will be final and will not be challenged in the future.
The reality is that, whether parties choose to enter into consent orders or a private BFA, a final property settlement, once formalised legally is very rarely successfully challenged afterwards.
The process to make a property settlement legal
When parties reach an agreement to settle a family law property matter, it is important that they formalise the agreement legally, whether via consent orders or a BFA, for various reasons as described in some detail below.
To review the process required for parties to reach a settlement please see:
- To obtain legal advice a about the law and about their entitlements;
- to make full and frank disclosure of their finances to each other ;
- steps to negotiate an agreement.
This article explains the two alternative processes available to parties to make their property settlement legal under the Family Law Act (Cth) 1975, i.e.:
- Whether to enter into Consent Orders; or
- To enter into a BFA.
These two alternative processes may be used by parties who are or have been married or in a de facto relationship, including a same sex relationship.
The role of an experienced family law solicitor is to ensure that the process to make a property settlement legal goes smoothly, avoids questions or requisitions from a court and can easily be implemented.
The Elringtons Family Law Team has experienced family law solicitors who are available to speak with you about your family law matter and guide you through the family law process.
For more information, contact Carlos Turini
- Parties have a legal “duty to make full and frank disclosure of all material facts, documents and other information relevant to the dispute” to the other party –Schedule 1, Pre‑action procedures, Part 1. 1 General (5)(i) of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (Family Law) Rules 2021 – https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2021L01197