The government has launched an inquiry into how the Family Court system deals with domestic violence. Specifically "how Australia’s federal family law system can better support and protect people affected by family violence". Of particular interest to you (the average Australian) should be the fact that "The Committee wants to ensure that its findings are informed by those with personal experience at the intersection of family violence and the family law system."
No change will happen unless people ask for change. If you have an opinion about changes that should be made to the family law system you should make a submission to this inquiry.
How do I comment?
- An anonymous online questionnaire, which will be open until 30 June 2017.
- Community statements for individuals who wish to discuss their experiences of the treatment of family violence within the family law system with the committee.
- Public hearings to gather evidence from stakeholders, including government agencies, non-government organisations, and experts in the policy area.
- Written submissions addressing one or more of the terms of reference to be received by Wednesday, 3 May 2017.
Anonymous Online Questionare
This questionnaire is anonymous, and you will not be asked for any personal details. You can fill it out online. The survey takes 10-15 minutes, depending on how long your answers are.
Service providers, community groups, and other organisations are encouraged to share the link to this questionnaire. The questionnaire is actually difficult to answer unless you personally experienced the court system (as opposed to working in the Court system, like lawyers, counsellors, mediators, or court staff).
It is actually a crime to publish identifying details of any Family Law matter involving children, so you cannot include identifying comments or remarks in your form, and the Committee has made it plain that any submissions involving those details cannot and will not be used (or at least those parts of them cannot and will not be used).
As part of the inquiry, the Committee may invite members of the community to make short statements by telephone about their experience, and about how the family law system can better protect people affected by family violence.
By completing this form, you are expressing your interest in making a statement by telephone to the Committee. Statements will be limited to three minutes in length.
If you are currently experience domestic violence and you need help you should make an appointment to speak with Hamish Williams. He is an experienced family law practitioner which, unfortunately, also means that he is experienced at helping people dealing with domestic violence.
He will try and make the process as manageable and easy to understand as possible. He is also well versed in the risks and benefits to children of certain orders or situations, and ready to advise and assist you to either settle your custody disputes with your ex-spouse, or assist you to urgently litigate your matter if orders are needed to protect your children.
If you would like more information about Family Law and domestic violence, or more information about Coode & Corry, then why don't you read some more of our articles.