The Australian family law system is primarily made up of federal laws which are in turn implemented by federal courts.
The law across Australia is therefore the same. However, with vast distances between each state and territory, the actual practice of the law sometimes does differ.
The Marriage Act 1961 (Cth) is, not surprisingly, the law that deals with marriage.
The Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) is the main law that deals with issues that arise following separation, such as divorce and the division of the property of married or defacto couples. It also deals with arrangements to be made for children.
The Child Support (Registration and Collection) Act 1988 and the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 are the laws that deal specifically with the financial support to be provided for children by parents who have separated. For more information about child support, see CHILD SUPPORT.
See also our booklet Family Law and You available from our Publications page.