Family Dispute Resolution

What is Family Dispute Resolution?

Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) is a type of family mediation that empowers separating couples/parents to respectfully negotiate parenting, property and financial issues.

This process is facilitated by a professionally trained mediator with post graduate studies in Family Law Mediation and is accredited by the Australian Attorney Generals Department.

The FDR process is tailored to meet the requirements of the clients and is available to be conducted face to face, online, or via telephone.

How can Family Dispute Resolution help you?

FDR can help you with:

  • Making parental decisions in the best interest of the child/ren
  • Rebuilding/maintaining respectful co-parenting relationships
  • Respectful communications between parents
  • Age appropriate communications between child/ren and parents
  • Being child-focused, developmental-focused, and future-focused
  • Collaboratively development innovation sustainable resolution
  • Negotiate details of parenting agreement

Parenting Agreements & Plans

Our Dispute Resolution Specialist at iDRstart can help you and your co-parent negotiate a parenting agreement in the best interest of your child/ren.

Under the Australian Family Law, it is compulsory for separated parents to attempt FDR before applying to a family law court for parenting orders.

Property/Financial Settlement

At iDRstart, we can help you reach an agreement regarding the settlement of property or finances after separation.

We strongly encourage and recommend you seek legal advice before coming to mediation so that you will be able to make informed decisions in the best interest of your child/ren.

Certificate or Documentation for Pre-Court/Court

At iDRstart, FDR services for Parenting, Property and Financial matters pre-court and are also available to provide mediation services if you are ordered back to mediation under the new Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (FCFCOA) case management processes.

For parenting matters, if FDR is deemed inappropriate, or there is refusal from the other party to attend FDR, you will be in a position to request for our Dispute Resolution Specialist to issue you with a section 60I certificate. This certificate allows you to proceed the parenting matter to the Family Court.

For property/financial matters, if FDR is deemed inappropriate, or there is refusal from the other party to attend FDR, you will be in a position to request for our Dispute Resolution Specialist to provide documentation. This documentation, if required, may be attached to your Genuine Steps Certificate, which may be provided to the court.

In special circumstances, if applicable and deemed fit by the Dispute Resolution Specialist, you may also be in a position to request for a Certificate of Dispute Resolution.

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What is involved in the FDR process?

The FDR process begins with an individual intake session where the FDR practitioner will assess your situation and determine whether FDR is appropriate.  If FDR is determined to be suitable for your situation and needs, an FDR session of 3-5 hours will be scheduled.

Benefits of FDR versus Family Court?

There are numerous benefits of FDR versus the Family Court process:

  • FDR is much more cost effective, with mediation only costing a few hundred from intake to reaching an agreement through mediation. Clients that have been through the Family Court process have been reported to spend between $15,000 and $650,000. 
  • FDR is also more time efficient, both with a shorter waiting list as well as a shorter duration from the intake to final agreement taking only a few weeks. In contrast, the family court process can take up to 2 years, from the lodgement of your initial application to receiving the final orders.
  • FDR also allows you to reach a Win-Win resolution that is suitable and sustainable for all involved. Both parents are able to respectfully and cooperatively negotiate an agreeable outcome together in the best interest of the child/ren. The Family Court is unlike FDR whereby the process can be very intimidating and adversarial as a judge decides the outcome.

Overall, FDR is far less stressful than going through the Family Court process due to cost, time, and cooperative approach used to resolve parenting issues.