Welcome to the Family Law Section of the New Zealand Law Society.

The Family Law Section represents the interests of approximately 1000 New Zealand family law practitioners. It has primary responsibility on behalf of the Law Society in all areas of family law and has a strong and active voice in relation to such issues as Family Courts management, the independence of the Family Court, Lawyer for Child rates, legal aid rates, and education.

New Zealand Relationship Property Survey 2017

When Jay Shaw of Grant Thornton New Zealand proposed a survey of relationship property practitioners in conjunction with the New Zealand Law Society’s Family Law Section, the executive was excited by the idea.

It has been great to see the positive response from practitioners, which means we have been able to make highly meaningful observations.

Those responses are representative across the country – the results matched, fairly accurately, the number of relationship property practitioners in the various regions. With the review of relationship property law looming, the survey provides some interesting initial insights into current legal and practice issues that are of concern to family lawyers.

The results also highlight areas of family lawyers’ practise worthy of further discussion, including matters such as the level of advice we give on contracting out agreements.

The Family Law Section thanks Grant Thornton for its instigation of, and involvement in, this inaugural survey, and looks forward to building on this snapshot of relationship property law practise in two years’ time, when we hope to repeat the exercise.

Kirsty Swadling
Family Law Section Chair

View the media release and download the survey report.

New Family Justice system

There is a new section in the members’ area of the website which contains information for FLS members, including factsheets, court forms and affidavits in word formats and a number of frequently asked questions that will assist members with the new Family Justice system.  Members will be advised by email bulletin when new information is posted.  This information is available for FLS members only and can be accessed here

Family Dispute Resolution

Recent reforms to the family justice system establish a new Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) service in relation to disputes about parenting and guardianship arrangements.

From the end of March 2014 if you want to provide either state funded or private FDR services under the new system you will have to belong to and be appointed by an Approved Dispute Resolution Organisation (ADRO).

The Law Society has been approved as an ADRO and is tasked with appointing individual FDR providers who meet and continue to meet the requirements and competencies prescribed for FDR. The Law Society welcomes applications from qualified practitioners who wish to be appointed as FDR providers. Read more.

NZLS Panel of Mediators

The service is currently available to members of the NZLS and its Family Law Section and has been developed to ensure that the quality of mediation undertaken by family lawyers is of the highest standard.

By joining the NZLS Panel of Mediators as a Family Specialist, you will be able to demonstrate that you have achieved a certain level of training and experience in family mediation, and that you are committed to maintaining a high standard of mediation in your practice.

The NZLS Panel of Mediators section on my.lawsociety.org.nz provides details on membership, accreditation and training, along with relevant resources, guidelines and precedents.

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