August 25, 2019
“Don’t you ever get a spot on your shirt?” Dr Robert Simon (United States Forensic Psychologist) on how all parents make mistakes and understanding each families unique culture specific to them. AFCC series.
- Focus of his talks at the AFCC Conference.
- Dr Simon’s history in family law, around the world and in particular in the United States.
- Understand a families “Culture” and their “culture”. Each family has their own culture unique to them.
- Usually, the greatest risk to children is the conflict in and of itself, not the thing they are having the conflict about: “The problem is not the problem.”
- It is incredibly hard, but rewarding to work through these issues as a parent:
- There is something about the process of conflict that draws you in. Parents are not bad people for having made mistakes: “I made all the mistakes.“
- How to change and learn how to put your children first during separation.
- The need for forgiveness of each other and of yourself.
- Do you ever get a spot on your shirt? Find a therapist who presents as authentic and fully human.
August 11, 2019
Jeffrey Choy “looking for little shiny baubles” – Jeffrey on his personal experience with separation and his work today as a family lawyer
- History of Jeffrey’s career and personal experience with divorce prior to working as a family lawyer.
- Jeffrey’s personal experience having ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder) and how he has made this work to his advantage as a family law.
- Tips on preparation of affidavit evidence
- Jeffrey’s personal experiences and the fall out years later after a separation including his continued estrangement from his daughter.
- Jeffrey’s tips for parties going through the process based on his own personal experiences and as a lawyer
- Jeffrey’s family history with his family migrating from China to Australia in the 1850’s during the Gold Rush and the migration back and forth between Australia and China of his grandparents and parents.
- Cultural issues in family law and how in Chinese culture you often veer away from emotion and how in Asian cultures more generally dealing with emotions can be difficult.
- Chinese Australian families in the Australian family law process – are cross cultural issues understood?
- Different family structures and different concepts of closeness in Chinese families; second and third cousins are considered as akin to siblings versus the Ango- Australian families which are much more focused on the nuclear family.
- Migrant experience of sacrifice and the fact they often do need to send their children back overseas to be raised by extended family.
- Jeffrey’s views on the proposed ALRC recommendations
- Jeffrey’s approach to family law matters.
- Good on Jeffrey for speaking so openly about his ADHD and how he has found a way to make it work for (not against him) in his career.
July 6, 2019
“marking the end” – David Leckie (Global Director) on amicably separating through Divorce Hotel International
David and I discuss:
- David Leckie's background
- Aims of Divorce Hotel International
- History of Divorce Hotel International
- Process for separating via Divorce Hotel International
- Children being affected by exposure to conflict and how this changes who they will become as adults.
- Preparatory work and screening
- Actual process over the weekend at Divorce Hotel
- Marking the end of the relationship
- Experts available during mediation process
- How clients are seeking something else/ pushing other agendas that are not always met via the Court process (i.e. marking the emotional end to the relationship)
- Holistic approach at Divorce Hotel, including the types of professionals who may be available to support clients
- Divorce hotel coming to Sydney soon... Stay tuned
For more on Divorce Hotel International see https://www.divorcehotel.co.uk/
For more on Zoë's work as a mediator and author of Inside Family Law (the book) see www.mediationanswers.com.au
Zoë is also a consultant lawyer at Evans Elliott Lawyers https://www.eelawyers.com.au/our-people
June 28, 2019
I interview Kate Rafton, who founded Raftons Family Lawyers about:
- What is different about Raftons and their approach
- Taking a commercial approach
- encouraging settlement
- Initial conferences
- Advice regarding costs
- Communication with clients
- 'Process driven' ways of doing family law and how this can lead to not being able to see the wood for the trees.
- Having a proportionate response to the matter and issues in a matter.
- Billing in family law, issues around incentives for efficiency in billing.
- Mediation and issues surrounding delay in government funded centres offering mediation.
- Different parenting styles.
Please contact me about my work as a mediator, lawyer or author of Inside Family Law (the book) at www.mediationanswers.com.au
June 23, 2019
In this interview Nicole and I discuss:
- Nicole’s career history and what drew her to family law
- The challenges of family law in particular for younger practitioners
- Nicole’s tips for winning over the client’s confidence when you are a younger practitioner
- Challenges between practitioners for younger lawyers, i.e is there a 'reverse ageism' in the area against younger family lawyers?
- Nicole’s strategies for working with other practitioners who may have an unconscious bias against younger lawyers.
- Listening to the client’s concerns and emotional intelligence
- Taking charge of a matter and managing the pathway forward
- Thoughts on collegiate approaches in family law.
- Mentoring and helping the next wave of lawyers younger than you.
Get to know more about Nicole at https://www.swaab.com.au/team/nicole-pozovsky
For more on Zoe Durand's book and work as a lawyer and mediator see www.mediationanswers.com.au
June 21, 2019
Interview with Tahlia Bleier who had carriage of the recent High Court case Masson & Parsons and Anor discusses
- Judgement in the recent High Court case
- Positive and negative implications for families, parents, donors and children of this case
- Ideas for law reform following this case
- Recommendations for those entering into having a child with a known donor.
- Why the floodgates have not been opened by this matter and it is not necessarily as reported in some media that "sperm donor found to be parent". How the father in this case also played the role of being a father above and beyond just being a sperm donor.
June 7, 2019
Kerry Chikarovski talks about her work with Our Watch and shares her insights on family violence. Overall she discusses how there is an improved understanding of family violence in the community and also much more public discussion about it. However the fact remains one woman a week still dies at the hands of her partner. In particular the message she communicates is that family violence is not something that happens "over there" but rather is much deeper in our society than that and goes back to lack of respect for women on a broader level. For more see:
- Kerry’s work for Our Watch
- Stories of family violence from women Kerry has met
- Respect for both genders
- Various campaigns and work by Our Watch, in particular educational and preventative campaigns
- How people are now speaking up more about family violence
- Gendered pattern to family violence and deeper issues in society about gender respect and misogyny in Australia and how this is a long term inter-generational issue
- Gender equity, including in politics
- Common myths and misconceptions about family violence
- Widespread nature of family violence across different communities and parts of society
- Increase in reporting numbers of domestic violence
- Changes in police attitudes and how AVO’s are prosecuted
- Affects on children of family violence
- Kerry’s personal views about family violence and the family law process, including increased understanding in particular by Judiciary of family violence
- Improvements in resourcing for family violence
- Where to start if someone is experiencing family or domestic violence.
- How to support and work with Our Watch
For more on Our Watch go to: https://www.ourwatch.org.au/
For more on Inside Family Law, or Zoe's work as a lawyer, mediator or speaker go to www.mediationanswers.com.au
May 20, 2019
Dr Jennifer Neoh discusses:
- Her unique family therapy where she works intensively with families for 4 full days consecutively (as opposed to say for a session once a week ongoing). Including a breakdown of what occurs during this therapy on each day.
- History of how this therapy was created, including drawing on experiences from family law in the USA.
- How this therapy has worked in complex cases, including where there is a rejected parent, children with anxiety and also importantly in cases where there is family violence.
- 'Alienation' or 'rejected parent' cases.
- Cognitive behavioural work with children with anxiety.
- The importance of fun during the therapy.
- Her views about reunification therapy and also her views on other more conventional therapies that involve say one meeting for a limited period once a week ongoing and some of the potential risks of this kind of therapy.
- Her approach focusing on parties behaviours rather than insight.
- The future of her approach to therapy.
- The AFCC (Association of Family and Conciliation Courts)
- New additional qualification being offered to family report writers.
Dr Neoh is available at 66 Mount St, Heidelberg VIC 3084 or on (03) 9458 1733.
For more information on Zoë Durand (lawyer, mediator) or her Inside Family Law podcast and book go to www.mediationanswers.com.au
May 16, 2019
Brett McGrath, acting Registrar of the Family Court and Senior Associate from Gadens and Lecturer at UWS (amongst many other things), discusses alternative dispute resolution, approaches in family law and being sensible and commercial when resolving matters. He also talks about his own pathway into family law professionally and also personally, including being a child of divorce and how seeing his parents' resolution of their matter influenced him.
For more on Brett see:
For more on Zoë Durand (mediator, lawyer) and Inside Family Law (the podcast and book) see www.mediationanswers.com.au
May 9, 2019
Bonus - Behind the scenes of Inside Family Law - interview by Eric Gyors with Zoe Durand (originally aired on Eastside 89.7FM)
Talking candidly about working as a family lawyer and also life, the universe and everything... including the behind the scenes of writing a book with an under 1 one year old and motherhood and creativity.