Downs and South Western Queensland Law Association

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Posted on 11 October, 2016 at 2:45

On 6 October 2016, members of the Downs & South Western Qld Law Association and members of our local family law crowd attended a wonderful evening at the local Fitzy’s establishment. The evening was a wonderful opportunity for practitioners and other professionals within the Downs & South West Queensland region in the family law sector to network and socialise. Even with minimal formalities, guests were fortunate to hear from esteemed speakers in relation to options, processes, and future engagement options in the family law sector.


Penny Feil of Accord Mediations, and Sue Long, a local Toowoomba psychologist, spoke about the process of child inclusive mediations and the benefits to families who appropriately engage in same. If you have any questions about the child inclusive mediation process, please see their respective websites: and Penny’s contact number is 0419 701 930 and Sue can be reached on 0438 058 788.


Tracy-Lynne Geysen also spoke about the arbitration process, particularly in comparison to the lengthy delays experienced by parties in the Federal Circuit Court of Australia. Whilst listening to Tracey-Lynne recommend Arbitration as a more cost effective, expedient, efficient and informal process than other options available to parties who are seeking a determination on property settlement matters, guests were able to gain insight into the process and why it may be important to promote such options to clients. If you have any questions about the Arbitration process please see:


Speaking about many issues which practitioners and parties before the Federal Circuit Court face, His Honour Judge Lapthorn explained that it was resourcing issues which are a main contributing cause to the delays experienced and in providing judicial family law services to Regional Queensland. His Honour confirmed that the funding on external expert reports has tightened along with funding in most other areas. His Honour spoke about the delays in matters which are in a position to proceed to a Final Hearing currently, and confirmed his view that if a party was to institute proceedings today, they may not have their matter heard at a Final Hearing until 2019. To assist in alleviating these delays, His Honour confirmed that the relevant bodies were assessing the possibility of running a Final Hearing list in Toowoomba for one week, in 2017. Following the success of three days of that nature being conducted in 2016, the Association and Practitioners were enthusiastic to hear that this could be repeated and extended upon in 2017. His Honour also confirmed that he is now the Case Management Judge for the Brisbane Registry, and confirmed that he will be conducting the Toowoomba Circuit for the 2017 year, with 8 lots of 2 day circuits scheduled to take place. His Honour is presently awaiting confirmation of availability from the Toowoomba Courthouse and envisages confirming the 2017 dates prior to the end of the year. His Honour thanked local practitioners for their hard work, confirming his believe that Toowoomba is “a very successful circuit”. Mr Jamie Crew, the regional registry manager also attended and was able to offer to practitioners an insight into the resourcing challenges that the Federal Circuit Court of Australia faces in any given year.


The Association would like to thank our sponsor, JLL Valuers, for providing support for the evening. JLL Valuers are established in the Toowoomba region and offer a full range of valuations services including for the purpose of family law matters but extending to all other valuation services. Bill Thiel from JLL can be contacted on 0422 434 528 or [email protected] and otherwise, please call Craig Ashford on 0408 434 532 or email [email protected] if you have any further enquires. The JLL website is


Further the Association was fortunate to have the event sponsored by Power Tynan, accountants based in Toowoomba who offer a whole range of accountancy services. If you wish to contact Power Tynan please contact Director Brad Hancock on 07 46888400. Power Tynan’s website is


The Association prides itself in engaging practitioners in local networking, and continuing professional development programs. If you want to stay up to date about our events, check out our website and register as a Member:


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