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The Best Divorce Lawyers in Canberra


Divorce lawyer

Going through a divorce can be an emotionally and financially draining experience – support from your legal team is essential. An unskilled divorce lawyer may end up costing you more because they may end up dragging out the process much longer than it would have taken with an experienced legal team.

If you don’t already have a lawyer you can trust, you need to find one as soon as possible. To help with this search, we’ve collated real-life feedback and put together a list of the top divorce lawyers in Canberra.

It’s worth having a quick read. Our commenters’ advice could save you time and money.

What to Look for in a Good Divorce Lawyer

Depending on the nature of your separation, the type of divorce lawyer you want may differ. That being said, there are a few key qualities we believe all good divorce lawyers must have:

  • Knowledge and experience. The best divorce lawyers have years of experience and unsurpassed knowledge. They’ve seen it all before and know exactly how to deal with difficult situations.
  • Confidence. If anyone is confident in your plight, it should be your lawyer. Your divorce lawyer should be 100% sure of their advice.
  • Sensitivity. As we mentioned above, divorces can be an emotionally challenging experience, especially if there are children involved. The best divorce lawyers balance strength and sensitivity.
  • Efficient. There’s no doubt about it – hiring a lawyer is expensive. As they often charge by the hour, hiring a divorce lawyer that works quickly and efficiently is preferred.
  • Honest. Divorce lawyers should have your back. That means being honest with you about the likelihood of certain outcomes. The good, the bad, and the ugly; they should be transparent with you every step of the way.

Canberra’s Best Divorce Lawyers According to You

RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 19 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.

DDCS Lawyers

DDCS Lawyers

DDCS Lawyers specialise in family law – including divorce – with six accredited specialists on their team. With an award-winning reputation for offering some of the best legal advice and representation in the Canberra region, DDCS has helped thousands of clients achieve their desired outcomes.

DDCS knows what matters most. The team understands the emotional and financial stress individuals are put under during divorces. They use a unique blend of confidence, skill and compassion to guide divorce clients through the ups and downs of the process.

Finally, DDCS recognises that families and couples come in many shapes and sizes, each with their own unique challenges. There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution when it comes to divorce. DDCS has the experience and expertise required to navigate the unexpected and to reach optimal results with minimal disruption.

18 Kendall Lane
Canberra CIty ACT 2601
Baker Deane & Nutt

Baker Deane & Nutt

Family separations are incredibly challenging and distracting for all parties involved. Baker Deane & Nutt recognise this and compassionately guide their clients through these periods every step of the way.

Operating for over 150 years, BD&N’s divorce lawyers ensure close lines of communication with clients who are undergoing these unfortunate events. Mitigation of financial risks and reduction of stress is their aim from the outset. Whether using Collaborative Law or the Family Court, Baker Deane & Nutt can provide you with expert advice, guidance, and representation in their tailor-made legal services.

If experience and expertise is what you’re seeking in a divorce lawyer, look no further than the team at Baker Deane & Nutt.

Level 1, 1 Farrel Place
Canberra City ACT 2601


With over 30 years’ experience helping Canberra’s residents overcome legal matters, KJB is an experienced, well-rounded law firm that works in Family Law.

They aim to achieve the best possible outcome for their clients and are happy to explain the complexities of the process in plain English. From the division of property to the adjustment of your will, KJB Law can help make your divorce run as smoothly as possible from start to finish.

One of our commenters, queenb, has some experience with KJB Law. Here’s what they had to say, “My sister is going through KJB law in Woden. Very straight to the point, conscience of costs, she highly recommends them.”

Farrar Gesini Dunn

Looking for a divorce lawyer with a modern approach? With offices in Sydney, Canberra, and Melbourne, Farrar Gesini Dunn claim to do things differently, to approach legal issues with a humanistic attitude and contemporary understanding.

For over 20 years, Farrar Gesini Dunn have specialised in Family Law. In fact, Family Law is one of the few areas this firm works in – they only do what they are good at, what they are experts in.

The team is client-focused and open to client collaboration. Their fee structure is flexible and their services can be adjusted to suit your individual needs.

Here’s what one of our commenters, Rubbercup, had to say about Farrar Gesini Dunn: “I couldn’t be happier. Highly recommended!!”

Have you had experience with a divorce lawyer in Canberra?

Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback on the best and worst Canberra divorce lawyers.

If you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.

Positive or negative, we want to hear your experience with divorce lawyers in Canberra. Did they achieve your desired outcome? Were their fees reasonable? Were they skilled and knowledgeable?

What’s Your opinion?

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152 Responses to
The Best Divorce Lawyers in Canberra
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notdingers 2:50 pm 17 Dec 09

Rachel Bird and Co are supposed to be really good.

Isara 1:11 pm 17 Dec 09

I can’t give a good suggestion, but I can give you a name to avoid. Rachel Bird and Co in Civic – I wasn’t particularly impressed with the service. That is what you get for picking your divorce lawyer from a cinema advertisement.

captainwhorebags 11:26 am 17 Dec 09

A negotiated agreement between the two of you is best. You can then apply to the Family Court for Consent Orders which basically put in writing what you’ve agreed to. The court will assess the orders to make sure that they are “fair and reasonable” to both parties.

You can download the kit from the Family Court site and do it yourselves, however I strongly recommend getting legal advice.

If you don’t get Consent Orders or a settlement agreement drawn up, then you will not be able to change the titles on any of your property (real estate and vehicles) without paying stamp duty. Your wife will also have up to two years to demand more assets.

I have been dealing with Dobinson Davey Clifford Simpson for a defacto breakup and I highly recommend them.

worldsmessiestbartender 10:27 am 17 Dec 09

coolmate said :

Thank you, guys for all the suggestions. Forgive me for not mentioning your names. I just don’t believe it could ever happen to me. Laws are now against men.

Easy tiger, I wouldn’t argue that the laws are against men, the stereotype that the man must take care of the woman is indeed entrenched, as is the concept that males are the only possible perps of domestic violence. But laws can be skewed in a variety of ways.
At the end of the day it tends to come down to how good (not always, but mostly how expensive) your lawyer is.
If you are willing to spend stupid amounts of money you can see the law in your favour, or if she has better representation, against you.

eyeLikeCarrots 10:21 am 17 Dec 09

I’m not sure I could ever trust someone enough to get married (but I have issues…)

coolmate 10:13 am 17 Dec 09

Thank you, guys for all the suggestions. Forgive me for not mentioning your names. I just don’t believe it could ever happen to me. Laws are now against men.

S4anta 10:09 am 17 Dec 09

Thumper said :

whooooah man. try to keep solicitors out of it, you will both lose. lots. seriously.

+1. Lawyering up ends in tears, not that I been party to this personally, but had enough tears in my beer from others who went this way and it is simply is not cool.

Holden Caulfield 10:04 am 17 Dec 09

Man, how far does Tiger travel for a bit of hoochie.

fnaah 9:57 am 17 Dec 09

Pappas, J were quite good. Slightly pricey though.

jennybel75 9:44 am 17 Dec 09

You need proof of infidelity first. Photos, audio recording, signed statement, private investigator report, that sort of thing. As a man, your word means nothing in divorce court.

Divorce is no falut in the ACT (and has been for quite a while), so unless there’s a compelling reason to do this kind of stuff you don’t need to.

Also, unless there are kids involved it’s (from my experience) a 50/50 asset split between husband and wife.

FGD is a great firm, again from my experience.

sloppery 9:37 am 17 Dec 09

Work out a reasonable split, and agree to it without lawyers. As soon as people ‘seek legal advice’ lawyers fill their heads with ideas about how they can take lots more than their share (because the law allows this). The problem is that legal fees get expensive.

Work it out, write it down. The sooner you are free of this problem the better, so you can get on with your life.

Buzz2600 9:26 am 17 Dec 09

Mr PC said: “You need proof of infidelity first. Photos, audio recording, signed statement, private investigator report, that sort of thing. As a man, your word means nothing in divorce court”.

Whoaa dude! Ever heard about no fault divorce? It came in about thirty years ago … means things like infidelity are not taken into account when dividing up the assets.

Coolmate? Are you sure?? Do you have kids? If so, and you seriously think she’s going to ‘do you’ in court, talk to the Lone Fathers Association, Canberra Fathers and Children Group or something similar. They will hopefully be able to point you in the right direction and find a competent lawyer.

The main thing is: Don’t go postal, don’t get angry or do anything stupid. If you do, that when the law is no longer on your side. Any form of intimidation or violence towards women (or children) is indefensible.

Take care and best of luck with your unfortunate situation.

worldsmessiestbartender 9:23 am 17 Dec 09

Mate, number one, having been there, it sucks, but as other have said and will say, it does get better.
Number two, try all other paths before going to the lawyer route.
In my situation I moved out of the house, took what I could fit in the ute, and left it at that for around 6 months. Broken hearted but not wanting to be a prick (she was the mother of my daughter) it was the easiest and most comfortable path initially.
The idea of lawyers was tossed around (I know a number of them, bars always seem to have law students, some of them go on to be high flyers), Farrer blah blah and Dunn are good, Ken Cush is a good bloke, and there is a good mob in turner, ellison I think.
IMHO unless there is a lot at stake and things get nasty, there is no point, go to one of the mediation muppets, Relationships Australia is cheap, if useless, being pissed off and broken hearted is not the time when you think clearest. But if you do go get lawyers, get someone expensive, and start selling stuff. If there is less than 500k of assets tho, I’d say cut your losses, go bankrupt if you have to (I did), wipe the slate clean and start again.
And another thing, if after you have spent 60-100k and it does actually go to court, make yourself look as non threatening as possible, this goes for mediation too. Being a big gorilla trying to explain how the little ballerina broke your heart never seems to work, especially when they start crying.
The system is not fair, but neither is life in general if you want to whinge about it. Suck it up, and rock on.

Geoff Mazengarb from Mazengarb and Barralet – 6230 0199

OzChick 1:03 am 17 Dec 09

Through my work, this firm seems to be quite popular in the ACT for family law.

squashee 11:21 pm 16 Dec 09

Just give her everything now… She will get it all anyway…

ace666 10:46 pm 16 Dec 09

Generally the courts don’t care about the reasons for a divorce. Unless there are other issues besides infidelity, dont waste your money on private investigators etc

ace666 10:40 pm 16 Dec 09

Find out what the likely percentage split will be for someone in your situation. kids involved etc. Negotiate around that. Get a solicitor to draw up the contract. Explain that 100% of the pie split two ways will be more than she will get if legal fees Take a large proportion.
Convince her that you will spend all the money on legal fees, if need be to get justice.
Do not be suckered into violence. If a restraining order is issued you are on the back foot.
It seems dark now, but things usually turn out for the best.

MrPC 10:37 pm 16 Dec 09

You need proof of infidelity first. Photos, audio recording, signed statement, private investigator report, that sort of thing. As a man, your word means nothing in divorce court.

Thumper 8:58 pm 16 Dec 09

whooooah man. try to keep solicitors out of it, you will both lose. lots. seriously.


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