Family Dispute Resolution (Children)

Family dispute resolution provides a structured and safe manner in which people can discuss the care of their children.

Parents must generally attempt family dispute resolution prior to instituting proceedings in the Family Court of Western Australia in relation to children. A Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner such as Benn Hill can issue certificates under section 60I of the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) which are filed with any Family Court Initiating Application.

Family dispute resolution may not be required prior to Family Court proceedings in circumstances such as family violence, child abuse or urgency.

The process of family dispute resolution includes:

  1. the first person makes contact with Benn seeking family dispute resolution;
  2. an Intake and Assessment Session is conducted with the first person;
  3. the second person is invited for family dispute resolution;
  4. an Intake and Assessment Session is conducted with the second person;
  5. the Joint Session is conducted.

It is important that family dispute resolution is conducted by a professional with a thorough understanding of family law and conflict resolution.

If you reach agreement, Benn will prepare a draft Parenting Plan. Both parents have to sign it and date it to formalise it into a Parenting Plan.

Existing court orders can be changed by Parenting Plans. Courts may have regard to recent Parenting Plans in making Parenting Orders. It is important that any Parenting Plans reached between parents should:

  • meet formal requirements so as to be admissible in Court;
  • preserve any existing Parenting Orders intended to remain in effect;
  • be drafted in a clear and comprehensive manner;
  • not result in breaches of any violence restraining orders; and
  • comply with any relevant laws including those providing for overseas travel.

Benn Hill provides family dispute resolution which is aimed at:

  1. ensuring that parties have every opportunity to resolve issues between them in a respectful and safe environment;
  2. providing parties with information or referrals to community resources or services which may be of benefit including referrals for legal advice;
  3. the parties considering, if agreement is reached, the preparation of:
    1. Parenting Plans; or
    2. Applications for Consent Orders and Minutes of Consent Orders;
  4. providing a process which improves the capacity of the parties to build a positive and co‑operative parenting relationship in the future.

Contact Details

Benn Hill

ECU Business Centre
Unit 18, 15 Barron Parade


0413 856 299
(08) 9301 1438

Benn Hill - Barrister & Solicitor

Experienced, legally trained and child-focused

  • Professional & personal service
  • Prompt appointments
  • Mediation sessions may occur even if one party has a violence restraining order in place
  • Competitive pricing
  • Section 60I certificates