Thursday, 17 July 2008

Opinion piece about impact of delays in the Family Law Courts

Sydney family lawyer Les Stubbs gave his opinion earlier this year in the Sydney Morning Herald about delays in the Family Court, and the impact on parties and their children.

Most tellingly, Mr Stubbs made this pointed observation:

But at the very least, we should try to make [the court process] easy and quick.

But we don't. Instead it can be very, very difficult. This happens because - as the legal process drags on - many believe it is easier to simply give up on the legal system and agree to whatever their combative former partner demands. This is the wrong reason to resolve disputes in the best interests of the children, and future financial security.

This has led to instances of people losing their homes to banks which are not prepared to wait until the Family Court has the time to hear the case; parties having to declare themselves bankrupt as they cannot continue to meet their debts until a hearing finally comes on; businesses going bust because a party is frustrated in running it for too long while they wait for a court hearing, and children being taken by one parent, and the other parent not being able to get into court to seek a recovery order until months later. This is simply unacceptable.

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