Going to Court
First of all, litigation is a last resort. This approach is taken only when the parties are not able to come to agreement and not without attempts to negotiate and settle out of court first. Whilst settlement is the best case scenario, opposing parties may not always be willing to cooperate or may be unreasonable in their expectations. In this circumstance, an application can be made to the Family Court of Western Australia.
Using the Family Court of Western Australia is an incredibly time consuming (years to resolution as opposed to months via mediation), expensive and highly stressful process that should be avoided where possible. The court takes active steps in encouraging families to resolve their matters via mediation. The first being the requirement of a certificate from a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner when submitting an application to the court. Exceptions to this rule will be granted in the following cases:
- There are allegations of child and/or domestic abuse
- There are allegations of fraud
- The other party is found to be non-negotiable/uncooperative
- The solicitor and the court deems the matter to be of an urgent nature
- Time limitations on the application are in effect
Even after application to the court, a trial won’t always be deemed necessary. If it is however, the court has the ability to issue orders that settle the following common disputes:
- Parental responsibility of children
- Living arrangements of children
- The amount of time children spend with each parent
- Matters regarding relocation
- Division of property and assets including superannuation
- Child support arrangements
If you have any further queries regarding the court process, you can visit the Family Court of Western Australia, otherwise Contact Us and we’ll be more than happy to answer any queries or arrange a time for initial free legal advice.