Family Law is a complex branch of law that deals with the highly emotional and personal section of our lives: family. Proceedings can be arduous and taxing and as such people have many questions about them.

Here are some of the more common questions about Family law in Sydney:

1. How much should I tell my family lawyer?

Everything you can that is important to the case. Even if you think it’s embarrassing or shameful, it might help give context or specific important that could aid your case. It is however, crucial to avoiding using your lawyer as a proxy counselor. Although every lawyer has a different level of emotional connection and interpersonal knowledge about their client, maintaining a balance between expressing emotional material important to the case and for cathartic purposes is key for both you and your lawyer. And hopefully your lawyer can help you get proper support during this time.

2. Does the law prefer certain gender in divorce proceedings?
There’s no explicit laws that dictate one gender is more likely to receive more or less in a particularly area during a divorce proceedings. The most common thinking is: men have greater clout in financial matters, while women are more likely to receive custody.
There are numbers that show this to be true, but these can be better explained through societal and environmental factors, rather than a legal bias.

3. Can I have someone come with me to court?
Yes! It is quite normal in fact to have a person or two come support you in the courtroom. They will not be able to sit next to you, but they will be able to sit directly behind you if you do want them close by. However you will not be allowed to have any witnesses in court before or after their testimony.

4. Do I have to wear a suit?
No, it’s not a requirement. Although any family lawyer in Sydney would heavily suggest dressing nicely so a suit or a nice dress are really strong options, but so are smart casual outfits too. However making sure you’re comfortable being there in what you’re wearing is important too, not thongs and tracky level comfortable, but if a suit it too much or you don’t own one, then wear something else.

If the wedding is called off, who keeps the ring?
Family Law in Sydney dictates the engagement ring is considered a ‘conditional gift’, the idea that if you receive the gift (ring) when you fulfill the condition (marriage). This is the run down for the three main scenarios:
– If the wedding is mutually called off, the ring is to be returned to the original owner.
– If the receiver of the ring calls off the wedding without legal justification, they must return it.
– If the giver of the ring calls off the wedding without legal justification, they cannot ask for the
ring back.

6. What is supervised time?
As under the 1975 Family Act, parent – child interactions were empathised, supervised time is shared time between the two, but while being observed.  It is normal for the supervisor to be a family member, friend, or if needed a professional government official, furthermore it is common for notes to be taken of the interactions.

7. Why is prescribed?
There are a couple reasons it can be ordered by the courts, all falling under the protection of the child’s wellbeing and safety.
– If the child is at risk of sexual abuse
– If the child is at risk of physical or physiological harm
– If the parent’s conducted is deemed to be inappropriate or detrimental to the child (drug abuse, alcoholism etc.)

These are some short answers to questions about Family law and lawyers in Sydney.

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