Family Court Reform Bill Passes

by Desk Editor on Thursday, September 19, 2013 — 6:03 PM

An overhaul of the family courts system has passed into law.

The third reading of the Family Court Proceedings Reform Bill split into ten bills was completed by 61 to 59 with National, ACT and United Future in favour.

Justice Minister Judith Collins said the bill would reform the family justice service to provide a less adversarial system.

People would still be able to get access to the courts when needed, but the system needed change because it had become slow, cumbersome and expensive.

The bill would provide other options to resolve disputes outside the court system, she said.

Labour’s Andrew Little said the reforms would not have the positive effects the Government desired and it was about reducing costs in the court system.

The reforms had started with the intention of addressing concerns about the slowness of the system with a robust process, but the bill did not reflect this work. Instead it sought to strip out costs and this would cause problems not solve them.

The House rose at 6pm interrupting the second reading debate on the Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Bill

Earlier a bill extending a ban on the sale of films until they have been shown in cinemas completed its second reading.

The Copyright (Parallel Importing of Films) Amendment Bill progressed by 104 to 14 by with Greens, Mana and Brendon Horan opposed.

The Local Government (Auckland Transitional Provisions) Amendment Bill (No 2) also completed its second reading on a voice vote.
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