Paula Phelan is a Family Lawyer with Specialist Accreditation in this area from the Queensland Law Society. She has been a lawyer for 24 years and is the director of Phelan Family Law, a Rockhampton legal firm specialising in Family Law only.
Mistakes to avoid when separating.
Our article this week is the first of a two-part series providing things to consider before or during separation.
For most people going through a separation, it is their first time, so it is not unusual for you to have no idea of the process to follow.
As separation is hard enough on its own, you do not want to add more to your plate by making some common mistakes that could have been easily avoided.
For people considering a separation, one of the most important things to do first is to seek legal advice. It is possible to do this before you actually separate which enables you to gain an insight into crucial matters that you need to be aware of before you make your decision.
A lawyer can confidentially help you to prepare for what is ahead should you chose to separate. They will also be able to refer you to other appropriate professionals, such as psychologists, to assist during this difficult time.
You may need to also discuss the impact of separation on your safety and obtain advice about the steps you may need to take to ensure yours and your children’s safety.
By coming to see a lawyer before making a final decision, we can give you a significant checklist of all the information you need to bring to us should the separation occur. This information can often be gathered discreetly.
You are entitled to this information and there is nothing illegal about copying it. If the documents are only originals, it is important to ensure that there are copies made regardless of whether you believe the separation will be amicable or not.
Examples of financial documents required could include contracts of sale, bank statements, copies of wills, loan documents or letters from banks and superannuation statements.