Keep calm and collaborate
Keep calm and collaborate
We recognise the end of a relationship can be a traumatic and stressful time. There may be many emotions running through your head, such as ‘it’s not fair’, ‘he/she did me wrong’, and ‘what about the children?’.
When it is finally decided that the relationship is at an end, the next steps and the timing of those steps is critical. It can be a huge challenge to set aside negative feelings to seek the division of property that best serves your interests, and to put the children’s best interests at heart. In these circumstances we work to get you an outcome quickly and economically. Our past clients have told us that from the first call or appointment they experienced a sense of reassurance in having concerns answered, and from knowing we will work with you all the way.
Achieving a fair result
Our objective is to achieve a just and equitable result through mediation and negotiation, without the need to see the inside of the court room. It’s cheaper, more efficient and time saving.
In property matters there is a four step process which is applied to each parties' circumstances, to achieve a just and equitable outcome by the courts.
- Identifying the parties net assets
- Assessing the contributions of each party – this is their contribution to the acquisition, conservation or improvement to the asset pool, and includes non-financial contributions as a parent and home maker
- Future needs – this requires assessing the future needs of both parties taking into account variety of things such as length of relationship, age, health, children and earning capacity
- Practical effect – the final step in applying the property settlement process is to consider the practical effect of the proposed settlement, and achieve a result which is fair and equitable in all of the circumstances
Each party is required to be open and honest about their financial situation. Without honesty and good faith, the mediation process will not work and the parties are destined to the drawn-out and expensive litigation process.
What about the children?
In parenting matters, the court is only concerned about the best interests of the children. The view of the court is that each child has the right to spend time with each parent as long as it is in their best interest to do so and is practicable (practicability is usually involved with the logistics of the child spending time with the parent ie. distance to travel, work patterns and rosters, and so on).
Mediation can be done informally through experienced legal practitioners or be facilitated with professional mediators and counsellors.
The bottom line
The bottom line is that family law does not have to be the adversarial and costly process that is so often portrayed. If both parties keep calm, reasonable and collaborative, a settlement can be achieved without destroying the parties’ chance to form a different harmonious relationship.
Our approach is to support and encourage so as to achieve an amicable outcome, without the need for court proceedings. If this is not possible we are experienced advocates to guide you through family litigation if it becomes necessary.