22 May Family Law Q & A: Do I have to go to Court?
Over the next few posts, we will offer a Q & A on some of the most frequently asked questions in family law.
No, no one has to go to Court to resolve any aspect of their family law matter. If one party chooses to file Court proceedings, then the other party will need to participate in those proceedings – they have little choice other than to do so because the consequences for not participating in the chance the Court will make the Orders on a default basis and there may also be costs implications. That said, if both parties commit at an early stage, through their lawyers or between themselves to the resolution of the matter through alternate means, there is every chance the matter can be resolved without Court intervention. Cases can be resolved by negotiations between the parties, through their lawyers, round table conferences, mediations, family dispute resolution counselling, arbitration or collaborative law, all of which avoid the matter coming before or being determined by a Court.