Pre-action procedures are created where you attempt to resolve a dispute outside of Court.
When it comes to parenting matters, pre-action procedures must be completed before you can take your matter to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, which may be necessary for more complex Family Law matters.
Pre-Action Procedures include:
- Provide the other party with a copy of the pre-action procedures, make enquiries about dispute resolution services available and invite the other party to participate in dispute resolution;
- Cooperate for the purpose of agreeing to a dispute resolution service and make a genuine effort to resolve the dispute.
- Comply, as far as practicable, with the duty of disclosure by exchanging relevant documents (in parenting proceedings, these may include criminal records of a party, documents filed in intervention order proceedings concerning a party, medical reports about a party or a child and school reports).
- If you intend to initiate proceedings, you must provide the other party with notice of intention to start a proceeding, setting out:
1. The issues in dispute;
2. The orders you seek;
3. A genuine offer to resolve the matter; and
4. A timeframe (at least 14 days) after the date of the notice within which the other party must reply.
The pre-action procedures aim to better understand the objectives of the other party and resolve the matter quickly to limit both cost and stress for all involved.
There are of course some circumstances where this is not viable including where there are allegations of family violence and/or child abuse.
We can represent you in pre-action procedures related to parenting matters and will advise you based on your individual circumstances.
What is Duty of Disclosure?
In parenting matters, disclosure relates to documents that may be relevant to the issues in the matter. The Court Rules specifically outline that disclosure documents in relation to parenting matters may include:
- Criminal records of a party;
- Documents filed in intervention order proceedings concerning a party;
- Medical reports about a party or a child; and
- School reports.