Joint Select Committee on Australia’s Family Law System: final report

Family Court Family law Law reform Legal professionals Legal services Australia

The Joint Select Committee on Australia’s Family Law System (committee) was appointed by the Australian Parliament in September 2019. Since that time, the committee has undertaken a comprehensive two-year inquiry into the family law and the child support systems.

Having closely considered this evidence the committee has prepared and tabled three substantive interim reports to date:

  • The first interim report canvassed the various themes and issues raised in evidence received throughout the first 12 months of the inquiry (tabled October 2020).
  • The second interim report detailed the committee’s conclusions and recommendations in relation to the family law system (tabled March 2021).
  • The third interim report outlined the committee’s conclusions and recommendations with respect to the child support system (tabled November 2021).

In its second interim report tabled in March 2021, the committee outlined its conclusions on a number of matters and made 29 recommendations with a focus on reducing delays and costs; improving the enforceability of orders; refining the family violence framework; amending the Family Law Act and Alternative Dispute Resolution; as well as a number of other related issues. The committee is pleased that the Australian Government (Government) has responded quickly to a number of these recommendations. In particular, the committee commends the Government’s injection of $100 million in funding for the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (Family Court) over four years for a number of initiatives.

This final report will note any government actions and Family Court initiatives since March 2021. Given there have been a number of developments, the committee also makes some further recommendations to supplement those made in the second interim report. The recommendations in this report are intended to be addressed in concert with recommendations made in the second and third interim reports.

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