Hello, Over three years ago I ended a de facto relationship that had lasted 10 years on and off. Since then my ex stayed in my house in separate bedrooms and we lived separate lives in every way. No financial, social, domestic, sexual etc. dependency on each other. No joint accounts nothing. Even to the point of not attending as a couple, family weddings or funerals. She moved out of the house recently and now has booked a court date for a property settlement. My response to her lawyer was that there is no property settlement claim, because for the last nearly four years we did not satisfy the 5 areas of legal definition and requirement of what constitutes a de facto relationship in Australia. And that any court application is no applicable because the action is "out of time". Their response is that my ex disputes this in regards to the relationship and states (untruthfully) it was a true de facto arrangement. My question is why should I face a family court action when I am disputing the relationship's validity over the last few years. Can there be a separate pre court case or hearing to determine the validity of the action before the expense and time of a family court property settlement?