Family Law and the Court Process

Family Law and the Court Process

If you have been served with an Application by your ex-partner, you need to obtain expert legal advice. Seeing a Solicitor is not enough, you need to see someone who is experienced in Family Law.

Stages of the Court Process

  1. Initiating Application – this is the document which is prepared and filed (lodged) with the Court that starts court proceedings. The Application sets out the details of the parties, the children (if any) and the Orders sought. Together with the Application, an Affidavit (a statement) and various other documents are filed with the Federal Circuit Court (this is the Court that hears most family law matters).
  2. Court Date – a court date is set and advised at the time the Initiating Application is made.
  3. Response – a document called a Response to Initiating Application, together with an Affidavit and other documents, is prepared and served on the other party. This is the respondent’s chance to tell their version of events and outline the Orders they seek.
  4. First Return Date – this is the first time the matter is in Court. If the matter is a parenting matter (or parenting and property), it will usually be set down before a Judge. If the matter is about property only, then it will usually be heard by a Registrar. The first return date is an opportunity for the parties to negotiate. Every possible avenue of negotiation should be explored in the hopes the matter can be resolved and Consent Orders handed up to the Court. If resolution of the matter can be achieved, then the matter can be finalised on the day. However, if the matter cannot be resolved then it will need to be progressed.
  5. If the matter is a parenting matter, there are various options available to the Court. Sometimes, an Independent Children’s Lawyer will be appointed to represent the children, or a report might be ordered to assist the Judge in determining the issues and what should happen with the parenting arrangements. If the matter is a property matter, the parties will be sent away for mediation.
  6. Despite being in “the system”, there is ample opportunity to continue to try and negotiate throughout the course of the matter.

At Turnbull Legal Solutions we can help you navigate through the tricky court process. We understand it is an emotional time, with lots of unknowns. That is why you need expert legal advice and someone on your side who can guide you in the right direction. At Turnbull Legal Solutions we will do everything possible to try and negotiate the matter on your behalf so that you get the best outcome in a timely manner (and without large legal bills). However, we don’t shy away from going to Court. If your matter cannot be resolved via negotiation (and unfortunately there is a small percentage of matters that need to go to a final hearing) then we will represent you and support you until the end of your matter.

Contact us today for a FREE 30 minute consultation to assess your legal matter and provide you with expert advice on what to do next.

Recent Articles

What is Spousal Maintenance?

13th August 2019

Spousal maintenance is financial support paid by one party to another following separation. Spousal maintenance is intended to financially... Read More

Left out of a Will?

05th July 2019

If you have been left out of a Will, it is important that you get legal advice about your... Read More

What is the Difference Between Orders and a Parenting Plan?

28th June 2019

Orders Orders are made by a Court, sometimes by Consent of the parties and sometimes by the Judge after a... Read More

New Drink Driving Laws in NSW - what they mean for you

24th May 2019

From 20 May 2019, if you are caught drink driving the Police can either issue an infringement notice (an... Read More

Separation & Property Settlements

09th May 2019

When you separate, it is extremely important to divide assets and liabilities as quickly as possible. Not only will... Read More

Recovery Orders

01st May 2019

What is a Recovery Order? This is an Order made by the Court (usually the Federal Circuit Court) that requires... Read More

5 Common Questions about Probate

24th April 2019

What is Probate? Probate is the process where the Supreme Court checks and verifies ("proves") the last Will of the... Read More

5 Common Questions about Wills

10th April 2019

What is a Will? A Will is a legal document that details your wishes about how you want your assets... Read More