Accommodating violence in the family courts

LexisNexis Australia
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Australian Journal of Family Law, 2019, 33 (2), pp. 100 - 121
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accommodating violence paper for AJFL accepting revisions 30 september .docxAccepted Manuscript Version111.17 kB
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In March 2019, the Australian Law Reform Commission final report, Family Law for the Future, was released. The report made 60 wide-ranging recommendations. However, there is not one recommendation directly dealing with the safety of court users in the report. This article considers that cases involving family violence are the ‘new’ normal in the Australian family courts and the standard mode of operation in the court should prioritise safety in the court system. As such, the lack of focus of safety in the recent Australian Law Reform Commission final report is extremely disappointing. The article draws upon interviews with children’s lawyers to provide the context of how the courts are currently experienced in relation to safety. In particular, the article considers the facilities for the protection of victims of violence within the court precincts and the availability of modified arrangements in court for giving evidence for victims of violence.
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