Sam sent in this burning question the other day.
“Once we have legal advice and signed the agreement in front of a JP do we need to send or file agreement with Family Law Court? ”
The Short answer is No.
Your agreement is a private agreement and as long as the parties are co-operative and honour their commitments under the terms of the agreement it should never see the inside of a court. Once you’ve finalised the document you can act upon it, including transferring property or splitting super etc and when you are done, store it somewhere safe (one party gets the original and the other a copy)and hope you never have to look at it again.
Among other terms in your agreement you will find the following;
6. The parties have agreed that by the execution of this Agreement, they intend to exclude the power of any Court having jurisdiction under the Family Law Act to make any order at any time in the future in relation to either the settlement of property and/or the maintenance of the parties.
This clause is crucial to any binding financial agreement because it specifically ousts the power of the court to make any determination about how your property and financial resources should be dealt with.
The only time that this agreement could be dealt with by a court is if a court has to determine whether the agreement should be set aside or upheld.
Every month we send out a short email newsletter called the Legal Scoop and we often invite our customers to send in a question they’ve been wrestling with. If you’d like to get on the list go to the Legal Scoop Sign up Page