Family Law Matters – What happens on the First Court Date?

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What happens on the first court date – Federal Circuit Court – Family Law Matters?

The Federal Circuit Court operates a docket system.  This means that the application will usually remain before the same judge from first court date to final hearing. The conduct of proceedings on the first court date is fully detailed in Rules 10.1 to 10.03.

On the first court date, the Court may make a range of directions or orders.  This could include an order that the parties to family dispute resolution, that the parties attend a conciliation conference, hat the matter be fixed for an interim or final hearing.  The Court could also conduct an interim hearing or finally determine the application. Rule 10.01 details the manner in which the Court may conduct proceedings on the first court date.

What is an Interim hearing?

The Court may conduct an interim hearing that deals with all or part of an application and make orders that are effective until the matter can be finally determined. Interim orders generally allow liberty to apply which allows the matter to be brought back before the court prior to the final hearing if necessary.

An interim hearing can be heard on the first court date if the matter is urgent and the court has the time to hear it on the day. If the Court cannot hear the interim matter on the first court date then a date of hearing for the interim matter will be fixed.


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