Senate inquiry endorses Family Court reform Bills

The Morrison Government has welcomed the findings of a 12-month Senate inquiry, which recommended that legislation designed to fix the broken structure of the family court system be passed by Parliament.

The Federal Circuit Court and Family Court of Australia Bills will merge the two courts – both of which deal with family law matters – into a new single court structure to be known as the Federal Circuit and Family Court (FCFC). Each court will be preserved within that new, single structure, while creating simpler pathways and processes for families using the court system.

The merger will also help to significantly reduce delays and backlogs, with independent analysis showing up to 8,000 additional cases could be resolved each year as a result of efficiencies delivered through the restructure.

Attorney-General Christian Porter thanked the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee for its work on the inquiry and said the Government would now seek to progress the Bills as a priority during the next sitting fortnight.

“Labor has already caused unnecessary delays to this legislation by insisting on a 12-month inquiry and I would now urge them to put politics aside and help us to deliver these important reforms which will provide significant benefits for families going through a separation,” the Attorney-General said.

“Everyone involved in the family law system has known for years that the system is broken and needs to be reformed as a priority.

“Our legislation will simplify the system by creating a single entry point, one set of forms, procedures, rules and practice management styles, making the court process easier to navigate for families and saving them considerable time and money in the process.”

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