By Chloe Elkerton, Family Law Solicitor
Last week the Morrison Government passed a Bill that will undoubtedly result in the biggest overhaul of Australia’s Family Court system since 1975.
Under our current Family Law structure, family law lawyers will tell you that matters proceed to hearing in one of either two Courts:
- The Family Court of Australia – which deals with complex family law matters, and
- The Federal Circuit Court of Australia – which deals with less complex family law matters and also other areas of law including migration, bankruptcy, human rights, industrial law and more.
The Family Court of Australia was established in 1976 as a stand-alone specialist Court. It recognised that many family law matters are complex and require specialised Judges and staff to support vulnerable Australian families.
The Federal Circuit Court was then established in 1999 to alleviate the workload of the Family Court by dealing with less-complex family matters. Approximately 90% of the matters in this Court are family law matters.