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Spousal Maintenance - Forgotten But Not Lost

Speakers: Martin Bartfeld QC

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  • Video
  • Paper - 18 Pages
  • Powerpoint Presentation PDF


Spousal maintenance is rarely applied for or ordered on a final basis. At a time when the economy is such that home ownership is out of reach for most working couples, there is little property which can be divided under s 79.

When income earning capacity is said to the most valuable asset a party can take out of the marriage, spousal maintenance should be available to fill the void, but is it? 

This seminar will look at:

  • A historical overview.
  • When should you be looking at making a maintenance application? 
  • How to craft orders which are likely to appeal to the Bench (ie not some sort of ambit claim).
  • When to throw in an application for monies for legal costs. 
  • What are the common pitfalls which cause you to lose? 
  • How to fill out part N so you don’t lose. 
  • How best to defend such an application? 
  • Do you cross-examine?  What about?
  • Difference between urgent maintenance and interim maintenance? 
  • What sort of discovery are you entitled to/should get prior to running the interim (in Federal Circuit Court).
  • What are the common mistakes people make in completing the financial statement.
  • A quick run though establishing need and capacity.
  • How to best try and limit an order if you’re on the paying end.
  • Hall and Hall – The place of inferences of financial capacity. 

About the Speaker:

Martin Bartfeld QC, Barrister, Owen Dixon Chambers East

Martin graduated from Monash University with a B. Juris., LL B. in 1973. He was admitted to practice in Victoria in 1974 and commenced to practise as a solicitor on his own account in Hawthorn in 1975 until signing the Roll of Counsel in 1986. He was admitted to practise as a barrister in New South Wales in 1987. He was appointed as a Queens Counsel in Victoria in 1998.
He practises in Family Law and Domestic Relationships matters in the Family Law Courts and in the Supreme Courts of the States and Territories. He frequently presents papers at seminars and conferences and has written on issues relating to Family Law in professional journals.
He was the chairman of the Family Law Section of the Law Institute of Victoria from 1983 to 1985. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Australia Journal of Family Law. He was a member of the executive of the Family Law Section of the Law Council of Australia between 2000 and 2012. He was chairman of the Section in 2005.
CPD Guide: 1, PS

$66.00 ex GST