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  • Writer's pictureTanya Lavan

Process Options

You will receive expert advice about family law settlement process options, anticipated time frame and costs in your initial consult. This advice is based on years of experience combined with an understanding of your families emotional and financial circumstances.

Direct Negotiation

Arguably the cheapest and less adversarial way to achieve a settlement. I am able to provide you with legal advice as to your rights, entitlements and settlement options. You can then negotiate directly with your former partner to achieve an outcome. Once you have an agreed settlement the drafting is able to be undertaken, and you may ask for a fixed price bundle. If you are unable to negotiate directly, your legal costs can still be low so don’t worry. You may prefer to utilise one of the other process options.

Lawyer / Lawyer negotiation

In the event you aren’t able to achieve an outcome directly with your former partner, then lawyer to lawyer negotiation is a good option. This may result in settlement offers being sent and financial disclosure taking place through lawyers. You will be given advice early as to your rights and entitlements and the process. Once a settlement is achieved it can be drafted with a fixed price bundle. This option can also utilise a mediation service to finalise your matter. It may also result in litigation if unsuccessful.


Mediation can either be lawyer inclusive or exclusive, depending upon your circumstances. Mediation involves both parties attending a conference either together, or by way of shuttle. This will either be with a trained mediator or a Barrister that specialises in Family Law. Offers can be made, and advice can be provided, and settlements can be agreed upon and heads of agreement drafted. Mediation with a chosen mediator and lawyers in attendance has in the past had an approximate 80% success rate. It is a quick and easy way to reach a settlement without recourse to litigation and set fee pricing packages can be provided.

Collaborative Law

The least litigious and adversarial approach, this process option boasts an approximate 95% success rate and avoidance of litigation. You and your former partner will have their own collaboratively trained lawyer and attend a series of meetings to assist you in deciding on your own outcome. You will have the option to include a developmental psychologist or facilitator (especially helpful if there are children) and / or a financial advisor (for complex financial matters). Matters are usually resolved within two to three months and for approximately 10% to 30% of the cost of a litigation matter. In the event it is not an option for direct negotiation then this is the best approach to reduce the legal and emotional expense for your family. You can either opt for an hourly rate or set fee.


The most adversarial option that is sometimes necessary. Litigation will only be recommended to you if the other options are not successful, or not an option for your family. They may not be an option if the other party refuses to negotiate or if there is extreme family violence, or a relocation to New Zealand for example. You will be provided with family law advice early about your rights, and entitlements and what your outcome will likely be. We can appear in the Magistrates Court, Federal Circuit Court and Family Court on your behalf. You can either opt for hourly rates or set fee billing for applications, interim hearings and final hearings throughout your matter.

TML Family Law can provide you with detailed information as to process options and also advise the most suitable option for you, after hearing more about your family, relationship and separation.


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