Brisbane Family Law Centre
Brisbane Family Law Centre is a boutique law firm offering unique solutions in all areas of Family and Relationship Law.
We encourage our clients to explore all options to resolve their situation through the methods of collaborative practice, using Court proceedings as a final resort.
Central to our unique approach to family law matters is our focus on collaborative practice. This means that we work with our clients to find solutions to their issues through a series of meetings.
We have found this face to face method of dispute resolution to be more cost effective and to provide far better results for our clients. We will, where necessary, utilise non–legal professionals to assist in the resolution of matters.
This may include Counselors, Accountants, Valuers and Financial planners who can provide specialist advice.
In our experience most Family Law matters can be resolved without the need to institute Court proceedings particularly where clients participate in mediation and other forms of dispute resolution.
We will ensure you a very high level of personal service and are not afraid to think ‘outside of the box’ when assisting clients to come to a resolution.
Please phone or see our website for further information
Brisbane Family Law Centre uploaded a new special offer
Wed 5th Oct
Our Team Profiles
Charles Letts was admitted to the Supreme Court of Queensland in January 2014. Charles first joined the BFLC team in June 2013 to complete his Practical Legal Training. We were impressed by Charles’ attention to detail and legal knowledge, and as such he joined the team on a permanent basis as Graduate Lawyer prior to his admission.
Charles completed his Bachelor of Laws at the University of Queensland & then went on to complete his Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice at the College of Law Qld.
Sam Gray joined the BFLC team on a full-time basis in June 2012 as a Graduate Lawyer. In January 2013 he was Admitted to the Supreme Court of Queensland.
Sam had previously obtained a work experience placement at BFLC in 2011, then in March 2012 went on to join the team as a Law Clerk.
"It’s a sad reality that not every family stays together forever. In a time where emotions are tense, BFLC is able to provide a legal service like no other.
Being fresh out of university, it is a privilege to work in such a modern and unique office. Under the guidance of the solicitors here at BFLC I am given the opportunity to learn all that is involved in a family law matter.
In the time I have been with BFLC I have observed how exhausting the litigation process can be for everyone involved. I have also observed the benefits that families can experience by resolving their matter without going to court. As my experience continues to grow I am becoming more aware that the innovative practices encouraged by BFLC are (in most circumstances) the better option for clients."
Clarissa Rayward heads up Brisbane Family Law Centre and is an Accredited Specialist in Family Law.
Clarissa has practiced exclusively in the area of family law since her admission to the profession in 2003.
Clarissa brings to the firm a wealth of experience in all aspects of family law matters. Clarissa offers a unique approach to family law matters with a focus on resolving disputes between separating couples through mediation, collaboration and other non-court based methods. Clarissa also has extensive experience in appearing in both the Federal Magistrates Court and Family Court in both childrens and property proceedings. Clarissa is also an Independent Children's Lawyer, representing children in complex Family Law Matters before the Courts.
Clarissa is currently a Board member of the Family Law Practitioners Association of Queensland as well as being a Board member of Queensland Collaborative Law. Clarissa is also a member of the Family Law Section of the Law Council of Australia.
Please note that the following testimonials are collected, supplied and maintained by Brisbane Family Law Centre.
Frequently Asked Questions
Any agreement you reach with your partner should be formalised. If an agreement is not made formal it may not be able to be enforced at a later stage and therefore may be useless.
There are different types of agreements that can be drafted and you should seek Legal Advice to ensure that you have the correct agreement prepared for your circumstancesWhen can I get divorced?
You cannot apply for a divorce until you have been separated for at least 12 months. However, you can still apply for a property settlement or formalise arrangements for children immediately after you have separated.I have just separated ... what now ?
We often see clients shortly after their relationships have ended. Most clients are confused and unsure what steps they should take to protect their interests.
Most importantly, stay calm. It is important that you do not make hasty decisions.
While you should obtain legal advice at an early stage it is just as important that you obtain assistance with the emotional aspects of separation.
Separation can be extremely difficult and you may experience intense emotions. Counseling can be useful to clarify your thoughts and develop strategies to deal with your changed circumstances.My children have been taken away, what do I do?
You should immediately obtain legal advice if your children have been removed from your home. It may be necessary to apply for a recovery order– this means that the police may be ordered to collect the children and return them to your care.Are there any time frames I should be aware of?
Yes, with property settlement matters there are time frames that can affect your ability to apply to the Court for a property adjustment order.
For married couples, you have 12 months after the date of your divorce to apply for a property adjustment order.
Defacto couples generally have a period of 2 years from the date of separation to make application to the Court for a property adjustment order.We have been living together, are we in a Defacto Relationship?
In Queensland, up until 1 March 2009, as a general rule you needed to have been living together in a relationship of trust and intimacy for atleast 2 years before a Court will deem your relationship a Defacto Relationship for the purposes of the Property Law Act (Qld).
From 1 March 2009 the law for Defacto Couples changed significantly and now it is possible that you may be living in a defacto relationship if-
1. The Total period of the relationship is at least 2 years (which can be made up of multiple periods); or
2. There is a child of the relationship; or
3. There has been substantial contribution made by one of the parties and a failure to make an order/ declaration would be unjust
If you are unsure whether your relationship would be deemed a 'defacto relationship' you should seek specific advice from a Solicitor.What about the children?
Separation of parents can be a very distressing experience for children. Most children will be vulnerable and younger children may express fear of abandonment and separation anxiety.
Separation should not mean the end of a relationship with your children for you or your former partner. The family will continue but in a different form and it is likely that your children will have two homes.
The most important thing to remember is that children have a right to know and be cared for by both parents, as long as it is in their best interests.
It is in very rare cases that children will not spend time with a parent. You should try and agree with your partner from an early stage on arrangements for your children that provide them with security and routine.I want to leave our home, what can I take?
After separation it is common for one party to move out of the home. This can be a difficult and traumatic decision and often the person leaving the home will be unsure as to what they can and cannot take with them.
We recommend that you take any personal paperwork with you if you leave. It would also be advisable to take any smaller items of property, for example clothing and jewelry. There may also be home contents that have particular personal significance to you.
You should try and reach an agreement with your partner about the division of home contents. This will save significant expense to both of you. If there are particular items that cannot be agreed upon it may be best to leave them in the home and obtain legal advice. Do not destroy or damage any items of property.