It is widely accepted that a large proportion of family law matters resolve without going to Court.
The avenues available to parties and their Solicitors to resolve matters remain in place. We will continue to advise clients and conduct negotiations, conferences and mediations.
Conducting negotiations, mediations and conferences by video conferencing and telephone was a common occurrence prior to the current health situation and will continue to be available as an option to parties to resolve their family law matter.
Court proceedings continue, but the manner in which they operate has changed.
The principle basis upon which work will be conducted in the Courts in the near future will be by telephone, and when it becomes possible, by videoconferencing. Only urgent matters will be dealt with by face-to-face hearings or interviews, which will be conducted pursuant to the Court’s face-to-face in-court protocol, which can be found on the websites for the Family Court of Australia and Federal Circuit Court of Australia.
The Family Court and Federal Circuit Court continue to review and revise their procedures so as to accord with any restrictions imposed by the Government and keep parties and Court staff safe and healthy.
Telephone appearances by parties is a process that has been facilitated by the Court for many years. The Court is already adept at conducting appearances with parties appearing by telephone for what was generally deemed ‘simple’ Court events.
Court Registrars are experienced at conducting ‘conciliation conferences’ (property mediations) by telephone.