What is a Fair Outcome in Family Law Matters
My name is Bruce Provan, I’m the Managing Director of Page Provan Family and Fertility Lawyers. We’re a firm of lawyers that practises in central Brisbane, exclusively in Family and Fertility law.
One of the things that we sometimes hear from our clients is, I only want what is fair, and whether that’s in relation to parenting or property issues, and look, most clients do want what is fair. Most people don’t want to whip off their former partner or caused them any ill will.
Most people want to try and resolve the matter without going through court and without incurring a great deal of cost and delay and stress in the process. But the question of what is fair is difficult. In fact, the Family Law Act doesn’t refer to fair.
It refers to something different, which is just and equitable, which is different from what’s fair and sometimes people have their own preconceived ideas about what is fair in terms of arrangements following separation.
What’s important is to seek legal advice at an early stage so that as lawyers, we can understand your case, and we can also advise you about the process and the law and how the law would be implied in your particular situation. And so that you understand that if you do have to go to court or whether you go to mediation, you have a realistic idea about what you can expect to receive.
Unfortunately, what sometimes happens is that people get ideas about what’s fair, and often that is from well-meaning family or friends who might have told them about their own experience and what happened. But often that doesn’t accord with your entitlement under the law and how the law is likely to be applied in your case.
So it’s important to keep in mind that you should seek advice at an early stage from a lawyer who specialises in family law, and generally, if you do that, and for people who follow the advice of their lawyers, matters can be resolved through negotiation or mediation without having to go through the cost, stress, and delay of court proceedings.
Certainly, there’s exceptions where matters need to go to court to be resolved. If the other person is being unreasonable, for example, our advice to you will be that you should make an application to court. But even if those cases that start in court, only a small percentage of them go all the way to a hearing in court.
So my name is Bruce Provan from Page Provan, Family and Fertility Lawyers.