By and -

Key decisions

  • Beamish & Coburn (Deceased) [2021] FamCAFC 20
  • Behrendt & Cadenet (No. 2) [2021] FamCA 19
  • Beroni & Corelli [2021] FamCAFC 9
  • Crawford [2021] FamCA 15 


No error in trial judge’s order that applicant’s barrister and solicitor pay respondent’s costs where property case improperly pursued

In Beamish & Coburn (Deceased) [2021] FamCAFC 20 (22 February 2021) the Full Court (Aldridge, Austin & Tree JJ) dismissed with costs an appeal in a case where a live in carer had sought a declaration as to the existence of a de facto relationship and property orders. 

The Court found there was no evidence of the breakdown of a de facto relationship. The applicant’s barrister and solicitor appealed the order that they be jointly and severally liable for the respondent’s costs, fixed at $100,000. 

The Full Court said (from [14]):

‘The initiating application … was signed by [the applicant] … At line 27, a cross indicated that a date of final separation was “[n]ot applicable” … 

[27] In her affidavit … [the applicant] … said:

… I believe [we] are still a couple but for the restrictions placed on me to visit him at his nursing home … 

… [The deceased] did not voluntarily leave me but was forced to …

[28] … [D]ifficulties emerge from this evidence.

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