Tips For First Appearances

Arbitration Endorsed From The Top

Early resolution of family disputes is my primary purpose as a barrister. You could say it’s my speciality. At the 8th National Family Law Conference Brisbane there was much discussion, debate and deliberation about the way forward for the family law system. Arbitration is part of that way forward. See below for my special fixed fee arbitration solution.

Delegates at the conference were fortunate to hear directly from the Commonwealth Attorney-General as well as speakers from the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court of Australia and the chair of the Family Law Section. A list of those speakers with links to publications of their papers are below.

Importantly, the current Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit Court and newly appointed Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia, Alstergren CJ spoke about the ingredients needed to improve case management and other court processes. Arbitrationwas endorsed as one of those ingredients along with mediation.

Another ingredient is the use of private arbitration in appropriate property cases is an extremely efficient way for parties to quickly obtain a determination and resolution of their dispute, rather than waiting for a trial date. It may be for a preliminary issue or to determine the entire matter. Arbitration was recently embraced in several Registries during the national call overs of family law matters.

We will work with the profession to ensure that the family courts have the capacity to expeditiously deal with issues that may arise during the course of an arbitration. This includes fast tracking applications seeking a review of arbitral awards.”

Read the entire speech here.

If you have a matter stalled in a list awaiting a trial callover date perhaps now is the time to revisit with your client whether arbitration is a better way forward. 

And it is vital you have that conversation and inform your client about the alternative means of resolution via arbitration as it transpires that a law firm is now being pursued by a former client for not informing him or her of the availability of arbitration to resolve their dispute when the other spouse was provided with such advice. 

Perhaps I can make that conversation with your client easier by undertaking a no obligation telephone conference with at least the solicitors for both clients to discuss the viability of arbitrating your matter. For those arbitrations commenced before 31 December 2018 I can offer a fixed fee of $7,700 inc. gst for a 1 day private arbitration. 

Email me now to find out more:

Other papers that have now been publicly published are as follows:

The Hon. Attorney-General, Mr Porter Speech at the opening plenary session, The State of the Nation 18th Biennial National Family Law Conference

The Hon. Chief Justice Pascoe, State of the Nation

Wendy Kahler-Thomson, Chair of the Family Law Section, From the Chair


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