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Have an agreement?

Make your agreement legally binding with 'consent orders.' Have certainty in your arrangements. Save thousands on the transfer of your home. 

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Consider making your agreement legally binding

Three reasons you should consider consent orders:

1. Parenting Plan vs Court Order

If someone doesn't follow a court order you can go back to the court and ask for an enforcement order or a punishment for breaching it.


If someone doesn't follow a parenting plan there is no penalty. Your next step is to apply to the court for a court order. Before you apply to the court you must have done the pre-action procedures. 

2. Risks in a handshake agreement about property

People can re-partner or their intentions can change. Having a verbal or written agreement with your ex-partner about your property won't automatically prevent them from later applying to the court for a different arrangement. The only way to have certainty about your new situation is to have a court order. Having a court order also protects the assets you build after your separation or divorce.

3. Save thousands transferring your home 

You must pay transfer duty (previously stamp duty) to the Revenue Office when you buy property, including a family home. This applies to you if you are buying your family home from your ex-partner. The exact amount is different in each state. The transfer duty in NSW on a $500,000 home is approx. $17,235, on a $700,000 home it is approx. $26,235. 


If you are transferring the ownership of your home to one person, having a court order is the basis for an exemption on transfer duty. 

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How to get consent orders

To apply for legally binding court orders reflecting your agreement, you submit an 'Application for Consent Orders' with the Federal Circuit and Family Court online through the Commonwealth Courts Portal. The court will either make the orders or write to you to let you know why they couldn't. The court doesn't automatically make your orders, it considers whether the arrangements are in the best interest of the children, whether property division is fair and equitable and whether it appears family violence has affected a person agreeing. 

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