An Arbitrator can decide on your property settlement and the award is binding on each party. It is a faster and more cost-effective way of achieving a property settlement with your ex-spouse rather than proceeding all the way to a final hearing in the Court.
A final hearing can take up to 2 years to finalise and then another few months for the Judge to deliver a judgment. It can costs each party about $100,000 in legal and other fees to get to that final hearing.
The court has the power to order you to attend arbitration and if you have all of the values of the property you own then this may be a cheaper option for both of you.
Arbitration is only available for property matters and not children’s matters.
Mediation is always the place to start if you cannot agree on parenting arrangements. You must do this before making an application to the Court or at least invite the other party to attend a mediation through a formal mediation service.
Mediation is another option in working towards a property settlement, but there will be no decision made by the mediator. Mediators encourage the parties to come to an agreement but they have no power to make a decision.
The psychological effects of court can be very damaging to people and if your matter proceeds to a final hearing you will be required to give evidence and be cross-examined by a Barrister. This process can be a very stressful and emotional time for each of you.
There are many qualified arbitrators and mediators and we can give you advice on whether arbitration would be a better option than taking the long journey through the Court System.
If you have a Family Law issue, it is always important to get legal advice to find out where you stand. Call Ruth Single now on (02) 4324 7699.