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How to increase your safety whilst living with your partner and prepare to leave the relationship if you choose to do so.

1c. Checklist of documents you need to take with you when leaving a relationship

Est. read time: 2 min

When you leave an abusive partner, the most important thing is the safety of you and your children. If you are able to plan ahead, and/or access these documents safely, it will help you to have important information with you, in addition to money, clothing, medicine, and other basic items.

Even if you are not sure you want to or are ready to leave, go ahead and make copies of as many of the following documents as you can, or secure them in a safe place outside of the home, such as with a trusted friend or family member. Digital or photo copies can be stored in a Cloud service (consider free cloud storage such as Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive).

Financial Document Checklist – for you, your partner or in joint names

  • Pay slips and records of any income
  • Bank statements, cheque books, account details
  • Credit card statements
  • Superannuation statements and account details
  • Tax returns and tax file number
  • Housing documents, such as rental agreements or mortgage statements, or title deeds (if you have a mortgage these will be held by your bank)
  • The title, or lease paperwork, and registration documents for your car
  • The trust deed for any trust or self-managed super fund.
  • Documents relating to any other assets (including recently sold assets)
  • Documents relating to any other loans
  • Details of insurances (health, life, car, house and home contents)
  • Centrelink documents

Legal document Checklist

  • Passports (for you and any children) *
  • Birth certificate (for you and any children) *
  • Medicare and health benefit cards and information
  • Children’s vaccination certificates and medical records
  • Drivers licence
  • Will
  • Any document that gives any other person authorisation over your affairs such as an enduring power of attorney (which you may want to consider cancelling)
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Pre-nuptial agreement
  • Any document recording any offer or agreement regarding split of assets.
  • Any paperwork relating to immigration or any court proceedings
  • Any documents relating to Family Violence Restraining Orders
  • Passwords
  • A written copy of phone numbers or important addresses in case you cannot get to your mobile phone or address book

Business documents (if applicable)

  • Business financial statements
  • Records of business partnerships
  • Business tax records
  • Details of business assets

*Passports and birth certificates are expensive to replace and, in the case of children, may need the signatures of both parents.

*Replacement certificates are available under certain circumstances- see information at Department of Justice: Birth,Deaths and Marriages

You may also want to take photos of any valuable assets in the home (anything you think may be worth some money or be of value to you).

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