​ሕግንና ደንብን በተመለከተ እርዳታ ማግኘት ይፈልጋሉን? - Amharic | هل تحتاج لمساعدة قانونية؟ - Arabic | ܤܢܝܼܩܵܐ ܝ݇ܘ̤ܬ ܠܗܲܝܵܪܬܵܐ ܩܵܢܘܿܢܵܝܬܵܐ؟ - Assyrian | Need Legal Help? - Auslan | Treba li vam pravna pomoc? - Bosnian | Burmese â Need Legal Help? | 需要法律帮助吗? - Chinese Simplified | 需要法律幫助嗎? - Chinese Traditional | Trebate li pravnu pomoć? - Croatian | ضرورت به کمک قانونی دارید؟ - Dari | Wïc Kuɔɔny në Wɛ̈t Löŋ? - Dinka | آیا به کمک حقوقی نیاز دارید؟ - Farsi | Gadreva na Veivuke Vakalawa? - Fijian | Kailangan ninyo ba ng tulong na panglegal? - Filipino | Besoin d’aide juridique ? - French | Χρειάζεστε βοήθεια σε νομικά ζητήματα - Greek | क्या आपको कानूनी सलाह चाहिए? - Hindi | Butuhkan Bantuan dalam Masalah Hukum? - Indonesian | Hai bisogno di assistenza legale? - Italian | ត្រូវការជំនួយលើបញ្ហាផ្លូវច្បាប់ឬទេ? - Khmer | 법적인 도움이 필요하십니까? - Korean | Ви треба ли помош со правни работи? - Macedonian | कानूनी सहयोग चाहिएको छ? - Nepalese | Necessita de ajuda com questões jurídicas? - Portuguese | Вам нужна юридическая помощь? - Russian | E Manaomia Fesoasoani i Mea Tau Tulafono? - Samoan | а ли вам треба помоћ у правним питањима? - Serbian | Ma u baahan tahay Caawimmad xagga sharciga ah?- Somali | ¿Necesita ayuda con cuestiones jurídicas? - Spanish | சட்ட உதவி தேவையா? - Tamil | ท่านต้องการความช่วยเหลือทางด้านกฎหมายไหม? - Thai | Fiema’u ha tokoni Fakalao? - Tongan | Yasal Danışmaya İhtiyacınız mı var? - Turkish | Cần Được Giúp Đỡ Về Luật Pháp? - Vietnamese |

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Responding to an Application for Divorce

If you have been served with an Application for Divorce you can:

  • send back the Acknowledgement of Service, or
  • file a Response to Divorce. 

If you agree with your spouse’s Application for Divorce, you don’t have to do anything. However, you should send back the Acknowledgement of Service so the Court knows you received the application.

If you don’t agree with your spouse’s application, you can file a Response to Divorce. You can do this if you want to:

  • oppose your spouse’s Application for Divorce, or
  • correct any errors or dispute any facts contained in your spouse’s Application for Divorce - you can do this even if you want the Court to grant a divorce.

If you file a Response to Divorce and oppose the divorce, you must attend the hearing.

Alert IconIf you don’t know what to do, you should get legal advice.


This section covers:


    Alert Icon If you don’t agree with the Application for Divorce and want to apply for a Decree of Nullity (also known an as annulment), you should get legal advice. A Decree of Nullity is a Court Order that there was no legal marriage between the parties, even though a marriage ceremony may have taken place. For more information, see Applying for a decree of nullity on the Family Court of Australia website.

    How to respond

    To respond to an Application for Divorce you must file a Response to Divorce. 

    You can download a copy of this Response to Divorce form from the Federal Circuit Court of Australia website. 

    You will need to include the following information in your response:

    • your full name and your spouse’s full name
    • your address for service
    • the orders you are seeking
    • the reasons you:
      • want the divorce application dismissed, or 
      • disagree with the facts in the Application for Divorce. 

    Opposing an application

    You can oppose a divorce application if you:

    1. have not been separated for the minimum 12 month period, or
    2. the Court does not have jurisdiction to hear the application, for example, you are not legally married or you are not an Australian citizen and you don't ordinarily live in Australia.  

    To do this:

    • say ‘Yes’ to question 5 on the Response to Divorce, and
    • write your reasons for opposing the application at question 6.

    If the Court finds that either of these grounds exist, it will dismiss or adjourn the application. 

    Icon - sample/instructionsInstructions: Instructions for completing a Response to Divorce – application opposed

    Icon - sample/instructionsSample: Response to Divorce – application opposed 

    Alert IconIf you dispute any of the facts set out in the Application for Divorce, but don’t oppose the divorce, you can may file and serve an Affidavit setting out the facts in dispute. You must do this at least seven days before the hearing date. If you file an Affidavit, you should go to Court for the hearing.

    Correcting errors or disputing facts

    To correct any errors or dispute the facts in the divorce application:

    • say ‘No’ to question 5 on the Response to Divorce,
    • say ‘Yes’ to question 7, and
    • list the errors or state the facts that you disagree with at question 7.    

    You can do this even if you want the Court to grant a divorce. 

    Icon - sample/instructionsInstructions: Instructions for completing a Response to Divorce – application not opposed

    Icon - sample/instructionsSample: Response to Divorce – application not opposed

    Alert IconDon’t sign your Response to Divorce until you are ready to have it witnessed. 

    Alert IconIf you file a Response to Divorce and oppose the divorce, you must attend the hearing in person unless the Court gives you permission to appear by telephone or video link. 

    Signing and filing your response

    Once you have completed your Response to Divorce, you must have it witnessed by an authorised person (Justice of the Peace or Lawyer). 

    You can file your Response to Divorce online via the Commonwealth Courts Portal or in person at a Court registry.

    You don’t have to pay a fee to file your Response to Divorce. 

    When you file your response, it will be stamped with the courts seal and returned to you so that you can serve it on your spouse. 

    Serving your spouse

    You must serve your Response to Divorce on your spouse within 28 days of being served with the Application for Divorce. If you were served overseas, you must serve your response within 42 days of being served the Application for Divorce. 

    You can do this by:

    • delivering your response to their home address
    • sending it by registered post
    • fax
    • email – if email address provided in address for service
    • sending it to your spouse’s lawyer – if their lawyer has agreed to accept service. 

    You don’t need to serve your spouse by hand, but you can if you want to. 

    Alert Icon If your spouse is overseas, there is a different process you must follow to serve them with your response. For more information about how to serve your spouse overseas, see Serving a legal document across international borders on the Attorney-General’s Department website.

    Picture of a person repsonding to an Application for Divorce

    Further information

    Federal Circuit Court of Australia - Divorce