Lane Cove Family Lawyers

Separating or thinking of separating? Want to know where to start? Separation is one of the most difficult experiences that people can live through.

Knowing where to turn and what to do, especially in the early stages, can help you stay focussed and on track.

If you are looking for a Lane Cove Family Lawyer then we are close by.

Doolan Wagner Family Lawyers have been assisting separating couples in the Lane Cove area for many years.  We offer advice and representation in any of the following areas:

  • Separation
  • Divorce
  • Property Settlements
  • Parenting
  • Child Support
  • Super Splitting
  • De Facto Matters
  • Maintenance
  • Family Dispute Resolution

If you are looking for a family or divorce lawyer in Lane Cove but are not sure who to approach or how to make the right decision for you then read on – the following questions will be invaluable in helping you make the best decision for your family:

How do you choose the right family lawyer for your separation?

Lawyers Accredited by the Law Society of New South Wales as Family Law Specialists possess a high degree of competence in their field of expertise. They are technically good and know their way around the relevant laws. How you relate to your lawyer and whether or not you understand them and feel that they understand you however can be equally if not more important when choosing a family lawyer to represent you.

How important is it to have an experienced Lane Cove family lawyer in your separation?

A family lawyer with lots of good experience can make the difference between reaching a family law settlement out of Court or not. Experienced family lawyers can more easily overcome roadblocks and break impasses between separating parties in any negotiating. Family lawyers bring a large number of options and scenarios to the negotiating table. They are an invaluable asset.

Will my family lawyer be on my side in my separation?

All family lawyers are bound by professional rules of conduct.  They also have duties to the Family Court.  It is in this context that your family lawyer is compelled to best advance your case.  They are your advocate and will push hard to achieve the optimum outcome for you in your separation.

How can I help my family lawyer run my case?

The family law system in Australia is very paper-based.  Lots of disclosure documents, especially in financial matters, are required to be disclosed.  Being organised and gathering documents in a timely fashion goes a long way to assisting your family lawyer sort out your separation.  It can also make it far more cost-effective.

What are the best questions to ask a family lawyer before you engage them to act in your separation?

Probably the 3 best questions to ask any potential family lawyer:

1.    what sets them apart from others?

2.    how can they help you in your particular separation?

3.    what options can they identify for you to help you stay out of Court?

Additionally, one question that often helps is:

4.    what would you do if you were me?

The right family lawyer for you will have listened to your story, have developed empathy and a “game plan” to get you out of your situation in the best way possible.  If they can quickly answer this last question to your satisfaction, then go with them.  If in doubt, don’t.

Does it matter if my Lane Cove family lawyer is part of a big firm or a small firm?

The short answer to this question is “no” but there are advantages and disadvantages to both.  A large firm is likely to be more resourced however this can be costly and result in you being “lost in the system”.  In a smaller firm, you are likely to receive a personal service and feel like you really count.  The costs may be lower however you need to be confident that the team is large enough to manage your situation if it runs off the rails.  Choose a boutique specialist family law firm big enough to get the job done but small enough for you to really matter.

What makes a good family lawyer?

The better family lawyers are:

1.    strategic thinkers;

2.    financially literate;

3.    appreciative and attuned to commercial realities ;

4.    able to read most situations and apply good judgement;

5.    respectful of others, understanding and patient with challenging situations;

6.    can leave their ego at the door and don’t entertain one-upmanship tactics.

In short, good family lawyers focus on the problem and do not get too personal with the people.  They are solution orientated and equipped with many strategies to achieve good outcomes.

These posts are only intended as an overview or comment on current issues that may interest you and are not legal advice. If there are any matters that you would like us to advise you on, then please contact us.

Find out how we can help you

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Call us on (02) 9437 0010

My property is in my sole name, is my former partner entitled to fifty percent (50%) if we split up?

In short, maybe. While it is unlikely that it would be fifty percent; it depends on the contributions both parties have made to the property, including the financial and non-financial contributions and contributions as a homemaker/primary carer of the children and various future needs.

How much time will the Court determine each parent should spend with the children?

The paramount consideration the Court must take into account is “what is in the children’s best interest”. As such, the amount of time children spend with each parent will depend on a variety of factors, including the age of the children, the parent’s living arrangements, the capacity to care for the children and whether there is a risk of harm or existing family violence. The remaining factors are found under section 60CC of the Family Law Act.

Can my former partner take all of my super?

Each parties’ superannuation is factored into a family law property settlement. Depending on the agreement you reach with your former partner, you can agree that each of you retain your own superannuation entitlements or you can agree that your former partner receives a portion of your superannuation as part of the property settlement.

Must we go to Court?

There are a long list of reasons why it is better to resolve your matter without Court intervention, including the cost of proceedings and the significant delays in the Court system however it is sometimes unavoidable.

How can I avoid Court?

There are many non-Court based options available to you regarding the resolution of your matter including mediation, arbitration and collaborative practice. For example, there are services around Lane Cove, such as Relationships Australia located in the Ryde area.

Can I still resolve my matter without Court intervention if there is a history of family violence?

Whilst it is possible to resolve your matter without Court intervention, parents must always consider what is in the children’s best interest and sometimes that means having the Court intervene where there is a serious risk of harm to your children.

I have decided to separate, what’s next?

It is important that you record the date you separated from your spouse. This is important for your Application for Divorce (if you are married) and time limits to finalise property settlement proceedings.