Family Law

We practice in all areas of Family Law.  Our family law solicitors can negotiate an early resolution to your matter or advocate for you in court.

Need a consent order,  court documents prepared or a solicitor for court?  Contact us now for tailored legal advice.



Family law matters can be emotionally challenging for all involved, especially children. However, the right legal advice can provide you with the knowledge and options to make this difficult time easier for you and your family.

At Harvey Legal, we understand the complexity of family law and the importance of handling these matters with compassion and care. Our team of family law specialists are legal professionals with extensive experience in the field. We are committed to providing you with the guidance and support you need during this trying time.

Our family law solicitors will take the time to listen to your concerns, evaluate your situation, and explain the relevant legal procedures and options available to you.

Our experienced family law solicitors can assist with the following:



In order to initiate divorce proceedings, a period of separation of no less than 12 months is required. This separation is established when one party in the marriage acknowledges the separation, and no formal documentation is necessary to prove it.

The basis for a divorce is the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, which can be evidenced by the 12-month separation period, even if the separated parties continue to live under the same roof.

An application for divorce can be made either jointly or individually and if children under the age of 18 are involved, appropriate care arrangements need to be in place.

When a divorce order is made, it will be operational after one month has elapsed – though in some cases, this period could be shorter.

Our family lawyers can help you through the entire divorce process.



Mediation is a process that involves the assistance of a neutral expert to help parties resolve their issues.

In regard to parenting, participating in mediation (Family Dispute Resolution) is mandatory before making a court application.

The Court favours mediated solutions and requires parties to attend mediation before proceeding to a defended hearing.

The cost of mediation can vary, and in some cases, the Court may fund it for parties with relatively minor assets, while in others, the parties will be responsible for covering the mediator’s fees and legal representation at the mediation.

We can provide guidance to help you prepare for mediation, locate a qualified mediator, represent you at the mediation, and formalise any settlement reached.


The Advantages of Mediation

Mediation offers several advantages over litigation when resolving a dispute:

  • It promotes amicable resolution of your dispute.
  • You can customize the solutions to fit your unique needs.
  • It is less expensive than going to court.
  • It is a faster process than litigation.
  • Litigation is often adversarial and can strain family relationships, whereas mediation fosters respect and understanding.
  • You are in charge of the process, including the speed of resolution and the final outcome.
  • You can avoid the emotional stress that comes with litigation.

If you feel uncomfortable attending mediation alone, you can have a solicitor present with you. It is also recommended that you seek legal advice regarding your rights and obligations before attending any mediation.


Going above and beyond the call of duty is just one of many reasons why our clients give us 5-star reviews.


Parental Matters

Parenting arrangements can be formalised via a parenting plan or by Court Order (either via consent or after contested litigation).

Parenting arrangements can encompass a multitude of factors, such as the distribution of parental responsibilities, whether shared or individual, where the children live, how much time the children spend with each parent, how the children communicate with the parents and addressing other pertinent matters relating to the children’s well-being, including their education, travel, religious practices, and medical treatment.

Family Dispute Resolution

The Family Law Act promotes alternative dispute resolution methods rather than litigation. To make an application for a parenting Order, parties must provide a certificate from a registered Family Dispute Resolution Provider, unless certain circumstances apply, such as when child abuse or family violence is involved, or when the situation requires urgent attention.

We can provide recommendations for registered Family Dispute Resolution Providers, such as Relationships Australia and private Family Dispute Resolution Practitioners.

It is prudent to obtain independent legal advice before attending mediation so that you can be confident the position you take at mediation is reasonable.

Parenting Plans and Consent Orders

In situations where parties can resolve their parenting matters without court intervention, there are formal options available to document their agreement. These options include entering into a Parenting Plan or a Consent Order.

A Parenting Plan is a voluntary, written agreement that outlines arrangements for the children. While a Parenting Plan is not enforceable by a court, the court will consider it when making any future Parenting Orders.

A Consent Order is a voluntary agreement that sets out parenting arrangements for children. These Orders are filed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, and if the Court is satisfied with the arrangements, the Orders are made. Consent Orders are legally enforceable and can only be varied by written agreement or by a Court Order.

We can assist you with drafting both Consent Orders or Parenting Plans – it is important to seek legal advice regarding your rights and obligations before finalising a Parenting Plan or Consent Order.

Contravention Proceedings

Once a Parenting Order has been made by the Court, a breach of the Order is considered a contravention. Failure of compliance can have serious consequences and be punished unless they have a reasonable excuse.

Penalties for failing to comply with a Parenting Order can include varying the original Order, requiring attendance at post-separation parenting programs, make-up time, costs and compensation orders, community service, fine, or imprisonment.

Location and Recovery of Children

If the whereabouts of your child are unknown, you can apply for a location order. In considering whether to grant this order, the Court takes into account the best interests of the child. Additionally, the Court has the authority to issue a recovery order that mandates the return of the child.

If your involved in a family law parenting matter, get in touch with us today.



Property matters

Separation or divorce can be an extremely challenging time, as the decisions you make during this process can significantly impact your life emotionally and financially.

At Harvey Legal, we recognise the difficulty of separation, and that’s why our experienced legal team is here to assist you in making informed decisions about your entitlements when dividing your assets and property.

Having access to expert legal advice can help you understand your rights and can also help you and your former partner reach an agreement without going to court.

While informal agreements may be reached between parties, they are not legally binding. You do have options to legally finalise property settlements following a negotiated agreement: a financial agreement that complies with legislative requirements, or via an order of the court either via consent or after contested litigation.

By consulting with an experienced family lawyer, you can gain a comprehensive understanding of these options and make the most informed decision possible. We are here to support you through this difficult time and to ensure that you achieve the best possible outcome for you and your loved ones.

Our property settlement lawyers can help you divide your assets and property after separation.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do you have any guarantees?

    We guarantee that we will never charge above our estimate unless the scope of the work radically changes. If this is the case, we will stop work and explain what extra tasks need to be done before engaging in the work. As our client, you will never be surprised with a big bill.

  • How much do your services cost?

    Your costs will depend on the scope of work in which you instruct us to engage in and will vary from the type of matter as well. One of our key values is delivering quality service to you while keeping your costs at a minimum. You will be advised at all times of the low-cost options to resolve your legal dispute including taking advantage of free mediation services, government support programs and alternate dispute resolution services.

  • What areas do you service?

    Our firm serves Mackay and the surrounding regional areas. Our solicitors are experienced in appearing before state courts in Mackay, Townsville, Moranbah, Proserpine, Sarina, Longreach, and other areas in Queensland. We also have the capability to represent clients in the Federal Circuit and Family Court across the country.

    In light of the recent changes made during the COVID-19 pandemic response, state and federal courts will now generally accommodate phone appearances for procedural aspects of most cases.

Book your free 15-minute consultation now.

Simply answer a few questions so our lawyers can provide you with advice that is personalised and relevant to your particular issue or enquiry. If you need urgent attention, please call 07 4829 4363