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Unavoidable costs if self represented

As a first time SRL what can I be expected to pay, obviously this is open to many variables ...just would like to have some idea with not too many surprises along the way. Going to court shortly for the first time regarding child custody matter.
The more you do the less you pay. Actual costs to the courts are not excessive, but solicitors costs are. Fully self represented puts costs in the hundreds and not the thousands and it is possible to self represent if you do your homework.

Representing yourself

dingo1 said
As a first time SRL what can I be expected to pay, obviously this is open to many variables …
It entirely depends on what services you engage. Some SRL's have been entirely successful others have not been so successful. The amount of success relates partially, I believe, to the amount of time you spend preparing. There are many components and if you are prepared to put in the hard yards and much reading you should get a reasonable outcome. There is much to do around mediation and that process as well as a possible engagement with the SRL-Resources group. They are around the site and in the Community area.
dingo1 said
just would like to have some idea with not too many surprises along the way. Going to court shortly for the first time regarding child custody matter.
The more work you put in the less surprises. Be well prepared, be on time with papers and documents and follow the directions of the court staff in relation to times and events. Definitely sit in court and see what goes on BEFORE you have your hearing and I don't mean the same day. You could use the search engine here to answer almost any matter about mediation, courts and child support.It is interesting that feedback from Judicial Magistrates is sometimes quite positive where an SRL has been fully prepared and can argue the particular sections of the Act when asked to do so… . There are some very good summaries from people like ISYS on the site who have recounted their experiences.  It is protracted and difficult when the SRL is not prepared. Give us feedback as well as you progress so that newcomers can get a feel for what is good and bad. I assume you have been through a fair bit of mediation so far and that has not had the desired result. Whatever your situation there are a number of "Geezers" around here (and I say that with great respect and reverence for many of you who post regularly) who will assist you should there be any reasonable questions arising.  :)


Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
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What can I be expected to pay?

Depends.

If you're employed, you may lose income, as being a SRL requires you to do research. For example, attending the Family Court during business hours to sit in on cases. You'll be required to attend court for subpoena hearings, conferences, filing of documents, reading subpoena materials in the document room and preparing court documents.

If you are putting in the required effort, expect to lose an accumulated total of at least 4-6 work weeks - not including a final hearing.

Unless you are exempted, you may be required to stump up half of an expert witness fees - which could be $1.5-3k. And maybe half of an ICL's costs - $5k-$10k? Who knows?

You'll spend $20-50 dollars to issue a subpeona - depending on who you subpoena. Witness appearance fees? $70 per person for a lay witness. $500-$2k for an expert?

Costs for preparing documents - photo copying, printing, etc - $500.

You may require a transcipt - $1k-$5k?

How much does it cost being an SRL? Depends on the nature of the dispute, the issues in dispute, what the other party is doing and what is necessary for you to mount a successful counter case.

Is the other party responding to dispute resolution? Are you unwilling to negotiate? Resolving issues through dispute resolution reduces potential costs.

It is a lot cheaper of run a case yourself, rather than use a solicitor. But there are significant cost for an SRL, including loss in income earnings.

It all depends on the dispute.

The best money you'll ever spend in family law matters is purchasing a copy of Australian Master Law Guide from CCH for $110. This should be your first money spent.

4MYDAUGHTER
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