A new pilot project aimed at improving collaboration in the family law system has been launched by the Government this week (6 July).
The "Dandenong Project", which will run until December 2010, establishes new case management powers for the Federal Magistrates Court to actively manage all matters filed at Dandenong Registry. The project features a "triage" process to establish the issues in dispute and whether a matter is suitable for dispute resolution.
In addition, the project aims to assist self-represented litigants by working closely with community legal assistance providers to ensure sufficient information and support is provided.
"To get the help they need separating families often need both legal and non-legal advice and support," said Attorney-General Robert McClelland, who launched the project. "By bringing together a range of professionals, the project will ensure that people get the advice and support they require."
The project involves the Federal Magistrates Court and the Victorian Family Law Pathways Network, assisted by Victoria Legal Aid, the Peninsula Community Centre, local providers of family relationship services and students from Monash University Family Law Assistance program.
At the end of the pilot, the project will be evaluated for possible roll-out in other locations.