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NSW Questions on Mediation and Procedural Orders

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Brandon Taylor, 17 October 2017.

  1. Brandon Taylor

    Brandon Taylor Well-Known Member

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    Hi

    The judge stated during family court that my ex-partner and I would need to mediate to negotiate new family court orders and to squash whatever beef is between us. Judge also stated that this would need to occur in person and she suggests that my ex-partner travel to where I live in order to mediation because it would be cheaper in the long run rather than having to travel for a contravention hearing.

    We received the procedural order the next day (Mid-September), however it just states that the ex must 'attend' mediation. It does not clarify whether she needs to be there in person or not.

    When I mentioned this to the mediation office they stated that she would be technically attending via telephone and that would not be in breach of the procedural order.

    Mediation is scheduled for 30th October.

    My questions are:

    1. As I am self-representing, am I able to write to the Judge's Associate to get clarification that the respondent needs to attend mediation in person?

    2. Am I too late to make this request now?

    The ex has a history of not travelling anywhere (even though I live in NSW and she lives in QLD) and I am having to still do 20+ hours of travel to pick up my child. The Judge recognised this and really hounded my ex for this exact reason.

    Please help.
     
  2. Lennon

    Lennon Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn’t write to the court about it. It sounds like you are trying to make her attend in person to cause inconvenience or expense, when attending by telephone is a reasonable approach.
     
  3. Brandon Taylor

    Brandon Taylor Well-Known Member

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    I can see how this may look however when I have travelled in excess of 30,000 kms in 2 years to pick up and drop off my child, I don't find it unreasonable for my ex to travel once to resolve HER contraventions.

    You see... she is extremely high conflict. Having her attend over the phone will not resolve anything because she is likely to just hang up.
    Then I will be given a certificate (again) and will go back to court and she will attend via telephone (again).

    The Judge was very clear that having a child together is a mutual responsibility and therefore we both need to be putting the effort in to facilitate a relationship with both parents. As she has outright refused to travel anywhere except 5 kms away, I (and the Duty Lawyer) believe that the Judge was making an example out of her by forcing her to travel here.

    And yet here we are...
     
  4. Rob Legat - SBPL

    LawTap Verified Lawyer

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    Comply in terms of the order. If she attends by telephone, she runs the risk of incurring the judge’s wrath at the next hearing. It’s family law. If you’re going to go through with it, you’re going to have to jump through many hoops on your journey. Just do what you you need to do, realise that she’s probably going to squirm her way through it, and simply treat it as giving her enough rope to make her own noose.
     
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  5. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    If your ex is high conflict like you say she is, you'd best accept that the format of her attendance at mediation, be it on the phone or in person, is not going to make any difference to whether or not you reach agreement. If she doesn't want to agree and wants to force you to Court, that's exactly what's going to happen.

    Don't hassle the judge's associate because you risk looking petty. Just follow the procedural orders and don't stress over how she chooses to follow them, because you can raise it in your next Court hearing and let the judge deal with it.
     
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  6. Lennon

    Lennon Well-Known Member

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    I have travelled over 100,000 kms in 4 years to spend time with my kids (yet my ex actually says in her affidavits that she put in more effort than me because she would drive for 15 minutes to drop the kids to me - after I had travelled 4,500 km to see them), so I more than understand your sense of injustice.

    Notwithstanding the fact I had travelled about 10000 times more than she had, we mediated by telephone 3 times. Putting her to the expense and inconvenience of a lot of travel would only have made her angry and less likely to negotiate, and I suspect the same is true for your ex.
     
  7. Migz

    Migz Well-Known Member

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    Brandon, you know that mediation is going to fail. You are up against a high conflict partner. I believe they are even taught this in these Parenting Orders Programs, the reason being is that High Conflict means the current hours that the non primary carer gets to see the children remains the status quo. These judges are too gutless these days to make any proper decisions.

    These judges disgust me, you are standing there in court wanting a fair and just outcome, yet you get some moron on nearly half a million dollars a years in wages turn around and go..."you need to sort it out between the both of you"....Or..."the family report says this so that's what I'll do"...

    Hey idiot, the whole reason I'm standing in front of you is because the other party won't communicate and/or agree to anything. Therefore maintaining the label of High Conflict.

    Brandon let her appear by phone, take a tape recorder, and have it running in your pocket. Why? So you can transcribe the whole thing later on, she will most likely hangup by the 3rd minute anyway, just to burr you up.
     
  8. Brandon Taylor

    Brandon Taylor Well-Known Member

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    Hi mate, I'm not sure that I'm allowed to record the conversation and make a transcript.

    If I was, would I have to send her a copy?

    Trust me, I would love to so that my partner can listen to it later on (as she's not allowed in the room).

    Can anyone confirm whether a recording is allowed to be taken?
     
  9. Lennon

    Lennon Well-Known Member

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    Even if you could lawfully record the call (and that would vary depending on which State you are in), it would be inadmissible anyway. Mediations are confidential, and nothing that happens during mediation is allowed to be even mentioned in court, let alone producing a transcript.
     
  10. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    Legally it is problematic... I have done so because I suspected my ex of doing the same... Inadmissible in court but the cops might wanna listen to it.
     
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