To apply for divorce, you must pay a filing fee to the court. This is currently $900, though it is subject to change. There is a reduced filing fee for which you may be eligible if you hold certain government concession cards, such as a pensioner concession card or a Commonwealth seniors health card, or if you can demonstrate financial hardship.
The reduced filing fee is currently $300. The divorce filing fee can be paid online through the Commonwealth Courts Portal, as well as in court registries by EFTPOS, debit or credit card. You can pay by mail with a Visa or Mastercard by using the credit card payment form. An application for divorce is not the only application that carries a filing fee.
There are fees for all types of court applications, such as initiating applications, consent orders and interim orders. Applications for divorce are not eligible for an exemption of fees, however, these other applications are. Similarly, you need to be concession card holder or able to demonstrate financial hardship to be eligible for an exemption of fees. Unfortunately, paying the filing fee for the application for divorce is unlikely to be the only payment you make when getting divorced.
A divorce order is only about ending your marriage. If you and your spouse cannot agree about finances or parenting arrangements for your children, you may need to apply to the court for parenting or financial orders. If you do agree about finances and parenting, you may wish to apply for consent orders to make these agreements official.
Consent orders also carry a filing fee. Even before filing for divorce, if you seek a lawyer’s advice about your divorce you will have to pay legal costs. Therefore, the cost of divorce is hard to estimate as it depends on each person’s specific circumstances and choices.