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    FamilyProperty: Optimising the FCFCOA

    28/01/22 12:27 PM

    FamilyProperty is an online platform currently being trialled in the Sydney Registry of the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (FCFCOA). FamilyProperty aims to optimise the handling of property matters to increase settlements and decrease the time taken to reach them.

    What does it do?

    FamilyProperty is an online matter management system aimed at assisting processes that need to be undertaken during property proceedings in the FCFCOA. The main functions of FamilyProperty are:

    1. Settlement
      FamilyProperty makes understanding settlement proposals and outcomes easier by providing an interactive, visual tool for formulating potential divisions of property.
    2. Disclosure
      FamilyProperty provides a channel for easier disclosure between the parties and to the Court, with a platform for documents to be uploaded to and downloaded from.
    3. Document generation
      FamilyProperty can be used to create various documents such as Consent Orders and Case Outlines. If implemented properly, this should decrease the time required to draft these documents as well as decrease costs.

    Why is it Needed?

    The process of property division in the Family Court is already a stressful, expensive and lengthy process. It’s no surprise that the FCFCOA is experimenting with new platforms in an attempt to encourage negotiated settlements by way of Consent Orders. By using FamilyProperty, the Court hopes that matters will progress more quickly and enable parties to settle before a final hearing more easily.

    Will it work?

    Although the initial pitch by owners Tim and Fiona Kirkman seems promising, the central question we are asking is whether FamilyProperty is actually going to work? At Frank Law, we certainly hope so! As we continue to see matters delayed and hearing dates scheduled for 2-3 years in the future, it’s clear that the promised increase in efficiency championed in the lead-up to the merge of the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court has not yet been delivered. If implemented properly, FamilyProperty may be a positive step as the FCFCOA seeks to get property matters moving quicker.

    If you have any questions about FamilyProperty and whether you’re eligible, or need any other assistance with your family law matter, contact Frank Law on (02) 9688 6023.

    This is not legal advice.

    Ben Woodward

    Written by Ben Woodward