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Help for an SRL ?

Would it be useful if lawyer(s) provided help, maybe online, with specifc tasks, such as drafting orders, comenting on affidavits etc.

Maybe for a flat fee so there are no nasty surprises.

It's a way of getting legal help with the technical suff while saving costs on all the coorespondence and alike that a SRL can handle comfortably.

Any thoughts?

[SRL = Self-Represented Litigant]
Oh in perfect world this would be great but why would any solicitor simplify a process that makes them so much money?

I found it impossible to find anyone who would even answer general family law questions for an hourly rate.. it's all or nothing with this profession.

I read an article on the fact solicitors do not like the new less adversarial trials currently used in the Family Court system ( not the Federal Magistrates Court),Why you may wonder? …probably a few reasons I can think of in my research of the subject:

1 Chief Justice Bryant said "…They are likely to cost less than a traditional hearing…the simpler processes also make it easier for those who choose to represent themselves…"

2 The less formal approach is less costly, court processes shorter, the Judges are in control of the hearing processes not the lawyers, there can be a waiver of rules of evidence; instead of relying on lawyers to draft affidavit material which complies with the rules of evidence and then deal with objectives, the judge now has to consider everything that is admitted and then decide whether -it is relevant -it is otherwise admissible under the remaining rules of evidence -it is reliable and what weight should it be given.

One suggestion is that the private profession has become so accustomed to a culture of controlling what is presented to the court that it is resistant to the loss of control and is slow to accept a change of culture.

My opinion is less time drafting affidavits and shortening the length of court processes along with more people self representing means less money for them, oh how will they feed their children!!

oh the power!

precisely.  it is a corrupt system that feeds vast amounts of money to lawyers, keeps the judges in a job also, not to mention the court staff.  That's great for their kids.  Ours? they better do what that judge said or have the feds chasing them (more people kept in jobs).

Whilst it could be said it is good for judges to have the power over evidence and weight of that evidence etc, this power can also be misused by rogue, prejudiced, powerful judges who then simply claim any decision made is within their 'discretion', so tough bikkies, try and win an appeal with that.
There is such a service, called just answer but oh it's like walking into a mine field.
The advise is more generalised than the national enquiry line or legal aid advice line, when you ask specifically you are told here is there firm details, make an appointment.
I had an idea for here I was going to post that maybe topics that have more specific detail in things like how to write an affidavit, subpoenas and such could be moved to a new forum of FAQ's as sticky's. save people asking the questions again when the search system is playing up or they are not familair with the system.
having worked in the system, its far from perfect.. i think most who work in it would say the same.

Any way to make it easier, quicker and cheaper should be looked at.

I agree affidavits are long and very time consuming.  But the Famliy Law Act at the moment requires it for trials, and the basic reason for it is so both parties know what the other is claiming

Stickies or info on how to do specfic tasks is a good idea.  The problem is that non lawyers might not know what to say. Lawyers are always worried that someone might sue them if they give general advice.

How can we make this work?
Faith said
I had an idea for here I was going to post that maybe topics that have more specific detail in things like how to write an affidavit, subpoenas and such could be moved to a new forum of FAQ's as sticky's. save people asking the questions again when the search system is playing up or they are not familair with the system.
Faith, there is a deal of information in the public SRL areas and the SRL-R forums. There is a lot more focused material in the closed areas. One of the problems with Affidavits is that a generic template is often followed to the letter. Affidavits to a certain extent are 'crafted'. SRL-R has always checked Affidavits on request (for members). A rule of thumb is that 50% have to be substantially rewritten because they contain irrelevant material, hearsay or often the right material presented in the wrong and inadmissible form.
koala said
Its a way of getting legal help with the technical suff while saving costs on all the correspondence and alike that a SRL can handle comfortably

Any thoughts?
The largest group on this portal is SRL-Resources which has been existence for a number of years. The 'technical stuff' is par for the course for SRL-R. Sometimes basic correspondence is often a part of an SRLs undoing with often quite inflammatory material sent to the other side.

SRL-Resources. the Family Law People on this site (look for the Avatars) www.srl-resources.org  Non gender Professional and peer support for SRLs. Closed site, no public forums, no search engines, no lurkers, guests or the other side and their Lawyer and Friends.
Yes, I can see how affidavits wouldn't work but maybe things like the subpoenas, contraventions, case outlines and such - The main topics that have presented with good solid responses on basic how to's and put them all in one forum but users can't add to it.
It's just a thought as I have noticed that alot of the same questions get asked time and time again.
faith said
Yes, I can see how affidavits wouldn't work but maybe things like the subpoenas, contraventions, case outlines and such - The main topics that have presented with good solid responses on basic how to's and put them all in one forum but users can't add to it.

It's just a thought as I have noticed that a lot of the same questions get asked time and time again.
The problem with Family Law documentation is that there is no 'one size fits all' approach. With a contravention the all important documents are the Application, the Affidavit and any supporting material. Contraventions that fail are often due to poorly/incorrectly written applications as well as poor Affidavits.

We have several very good case outline document/template which have paragraphs that can and often should be removed because they are inserted as a guide. Again, as with Affidavits this type of document has to be thoroughly reviewed before it is used.

You are correct "a lot of the same questions get asked over again". Often a search may not reveal a direct answer but a good read of the relevant forums often does. There are people that join the FLWG and spend weeks and months reading and others that just expect a quick answer. Of course there is no such thing as an accurate quick answer because posts are often couched with a minimum of facts and a need to hide identity. Hence the need for private areas where more detailed information can be provided and posters can be more open.

SRL-Resources. the Family Law People on this site (look for the Avatars) www.srl-resources.org  Non gender Professional and peer support for SRLs. Closed site, no public forums, no search engines, no lurkers, guests or the other side and their Lawyer and Friends.
When I  filed at Sydney last Thursday for a Friday hearing I was told that the affadavit shoud be filed at east two days before. From the Rules it was my impression it was 7 days. Generally the court directs the parties to produce and that establishes the timing.

The attendant had to get an OK from upstairs before accepting documents.

During the hearing the other side arrived with unsigned and witnessed affadavits. These were filed in Court by the judge.

I have observed affadavits not accepted in court on this basis as should the other side argue that they have had no time to formulate a response then the affidavits may not be admitted.

Trying to push the envelope is not reccommended as sharp barristers can cause one to be affected by not having affidavit and annexures admitted into evidence. They still remain subject to admissability.

When you provide the other side with their copy of the affidavit is another issue. Providing the other side with your affidavit long before you receive theirs can cause one affection.

Maintaining credibility with the court incudes being timely with filing.

What is done for you, let it be done, what you must do, be sure you do it, as the wise person does today that what the fool will do in three days - Buddha
Hi koala,

You say you have "worked in the system" so you must be a lawyer or at least have access to lawyers who may be able to provide the service you stated above?

Sorry, I replied with sarcasm and scepticism  as I thought after trying SO many law firms, free legal advise hotlines etc and got either a no or no reply that your suggestion would be something that probably couldn't exist for a number of known and unknown reasons.

If you are serious this would be fantastic…where do I sign up?
faith said
Yes, I can see how affidavits wouldn't work but maybe things like the subpoenas, contraventions, case outlines and such - The main topics that have presented with good solid responses on basic how to's and put them all in one forum but users can't add to it.

It's just a thought as I have noticed that alot of the same questions get asked time and time again.
Faith I am a little confused by your suggestion. I have been a member of the SRL group for some time. They have many documents on completion of Affidavits, Case Outlines, Case Summaries, Preparation for Court, Orders and what to consider to put into them etc etc. They also have powerpoint presentations, one of which gave me more information in 60 minutes than weeks of research had done.

When my 'journey' started several years ago they checked and corrected my material which in hindsight avoided some dangerous errors.

I would guess there is more than a little difference between generalized public material and what can be put into private areas.

I would also guess that time resources play a very big part in what anybody can provide. People just cannot be expected to be available 24/7. There are many posts 'wanting' and far fewer on 'giving'. A lot of people seem to think this site runs on air and that its infrastructure is provided free by some benevolent being.
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