Australia’s Legal System Now Easier and Cheaper to Use

Canberra, ACT, Australia ( August 01, 2011

Australia's Legal System Now Easier and Cheaper to Use

Australia's Legal System Now Easier and Cheaper to Use

In a recent media statement the Attorney-General Robert McClelland stated that long awaited changes to Australia’s legal system had commenced today.

These new reforms should help facilitate in more people resolving disputes before going to court, therefore, saving money, time and stress.

The new reforms are part of the Civil Dispute Resolution Act 2011, which will fundamentally change the way people resolve issues in the federal courts.

“Australia’s legal system is changing – we are moving away from an adversarial culture of litigation to a resolution-based approach to disputes,” Mr McClelland said.

“This means greater opportunities for resolution, rather than a system that prioritises ‘winners and losers’.

Under the new requirements from today, litigants must file a statement for all matters before the Federal Court of Australia and the Federal Magistrates Court, detailing the steps they have taken to resolve the dispute.

For those approaching the courts without first trying to resolve a dispute through other avenues, will see them being asked to explain why.

Mr. McClelland went on to say. “The reality is that the cost of court proceedings puts litigation out of the reach of many people.

“These changes will increase access to justice for the community by encouraging realistic – and less costly – alternatives to litigation.

“These reforms are intended to have a significant impact on the way the law is administered in Australia.

“The changes will assist in more efficient administration of justice and reinforce the idea that litigation in the courts should be a last resort.

“The courts will always play a central role in our justice system, but it’s clear that launching into litigation is not always the best approach to resolving disputes.

“Parties can benefit from exchanging information, narrowing the issues in dispute and exploring options for resolution leading to more matters being settled by agreement earlier on, before significant costs have been incurred and legal positions become entrenched.

“Even if matters progress to court, experience shows costs will be saved as the issues in dispute will be better understood and narrowed.

“The Civil Dispute Resolution Act 2011 is a significant reform that will modernise Australia’s legal system. It will benefit both those who use the system, and those who work within it.

A fact sheet on the commencement of the Civil Dispute Resolution Act 2011 is attached.

Critics of Australia’s legal system both present and past have eagerly awaited for these new reforms to take effect and possibly help level the playing field and minimize the litigation process for all the parties involved.

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