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No matter what your case involves, it is critical that everything possible be done to resolve your matter without resorting to court litigation. Litigation in court should always be a last resort to the resolution of any dispute. This is even more so when it comes to resolving a dispute consequent upon a relationship breakdown that involves highly personal emotions and often involves children. The resolution of a matter through litigation in relationship breakdown is not in fact a resolution at all. It requires both parties to take polarized position and to engage in systematic conflict over many months and in some cases years and as a result (in this case the Family Court or Federal Magistrates Court) will impose a decision upon the parties. Our experience in working with couples who have undergone relationship breakdowns tells us in no uncertain terms that the best long term resolution is one that can be agreed upon without the intervention of court litigation. Sadly, in some instances, court litigation is necessary but those situations should be rare and an exception to the norm. At Hartley Healy, we do everything possible to have our client’s disputes resolved quickly, expertly and without resort to court litigation. This enables our client’s to move on with their lives quicker and it minimizes the pain, stress and financial costs of relationship breakdowns. A good family lawyer will be able to assist clients to resolve their matter amicably through negotiation and other techniques including but not limited to Mediation. In family law in Australia, mediation is now a process that is commonly accepted by good family lawyers throughout the country as a proper means for resolving disputes. Mediation in family law disputes are typically run in a very formal and detailed manner. Usually, very experienced and senior family lawyers (retired judges), barristers, or senior family law solicitors are often chosen as the Independent Mediator. There are Mediators who are well aware of the law and more importantly of the necessity to settle matters amicably. Mediation do not occur where there is a power imbalance nor does a Mediation occur unless each party has made a full frank and disclosure of their financial affairs and all issues (such as a valuation of assets) has been resolved before attending at Mediation. Extensive negotiations and eventual Mediation are without a doubt the best way to resolve financial disputes and other disputes upon the breakdown of a relationship. At Hartley Healy, we have four specialized mediation rooms and all of our Lawyers are trained and experienced in conducting all types of Mediation in relation to relationship breakdown including both property and children matters.