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Family Law Education Network of Australia Mandatory CPD Conference: in summary

FamilyProperty was privileged to attend and sponsor the Family Law Education Network of Australia’s (FLENA) first CPD event held on 28 March at the Sky Suites in Parramatta, NSW.

There were a number of excellent educational presentations including Her Honour Judge Brana Obradovic, Judicial Registrar Anna D’Addona, and former Senior Judicial Registrar and mediator Belinda Crawford.

Belinda Crawford discussed the different methods family law practitioners can use to resolve conflicts. This included Family Dispute Resolution (FDR), mediation, arbitration, and parenting coordination.

Belinda reiterated a very powerful and valuable lesson which resonated with many in the room - through early intervention, early education and by listening, people can resolve rather than resort to court proceedings. The benefits of these are abundantly clear to legal professionals. Another great takeaway was the rise of parenting coordination in the family law ecosystem. As an alternative to FDR parenting coordination can benefit families in high conflict situations with a wide range of issues post agreement or orders.

Her Honour Judge Obradovic spoke about the voice of the child in family law and how research[1] has shown that children themselves believe they should have a say in family law disputes.

She highlighted that to truly promote the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and create a culture that values children's voices in family law matters, legislative change and a cultural shift towards inclusivity is necessary and will create a better future for children in family law disputes.

Judicial Registrar D’Addona focused on the Lighthouse Project which is aimed to improving the Courts response to family violence and child abuse in Australia, and the importance of procedural compliance in relation to court directions and court documents such as case outlines.

Other highlights included:

1. Tina Ng, Principal Solicitor at Metta Legal, highlighted the importance for legal practitioners to practice self-care, how to prioritise yourself and set boundaries at work and with clients.

2. Nikki Heald, Managing Director of Corptraining, shared her expertise on the art of networking and building strong professional relationships.

3. A panel discussion which included Fiona Kirkman, Global Family Law Evangelist Smokeball Australia and Co-Founder of FamilyProperty, and Jane Oxley, Chief Revenue Officer, Smokeball Australia, focused on emerging technologies within Family Law and the many options for practitioners to streamline productivity using FamilyProperty, Smokeball Legal Practice Management Software, Infotrack and Settify; and touched on the great security and cyber risks that should be considered.

Congratulations to Amanda Little, of Amanda Little & Associates and CEO of FLENA, and the entire FLENA team for putting together such a great educational event, with an engaging and very knowledgeable group of presenters. We look forward to participating again in 2024!

Learn more about FLENA and their membership options.

L to R: Amanda Little, Fiona Kirkman, and Jane Oxley

If you, or someone you know, are interested to learn more about how FamilyProperty can help your firm, book an obligation-free demo with our friendly team today.

Footnote: [1] Research conducted by Patrick Parkinson and Judy Cashmore.

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