Family Law

23 January 2012

Sydney Law School is set to deliver some exciting initiatives in Family Law for 2012.

Distinguished Speakers Program: Professor Nicholas Bala

Professor Nicholas Bala of Queens University, Kingston, Ontario will deliver the first lecture as part of the Sydney Law School Distinguished Speakers Program 2012.

The title of the lecture will be 2011 Family Law Amendments and family violence: Has Parliament finally got it right?

Nicholas Bala is a leading Canadian expert on issues related to children, youth and families in the justice system, and a Law Professor at Queen's University in Kingston, Canada. Nick has published extensively in journals in law, medicine, psychology and social work. His work is often quoted by all levels of court in Canada, including the Supreme Court of Canada, and has also been cited by courts in the United States and Britain.

Professor Bala's lecture takes place on Wednesday, 22 February 2012 from 6-7pm with registration from 5:30pm.

The cost is $25 ($20 for Law School alumni and $10 for students).

Click here to register and for secure online payment.

For further information:

T: +61 2 9351 0248 or E:

Family Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution & Techniques in Negotiation

Delivered during 26-27 March and 2-3 April, this specialist unit explores Negotiation in Family Law and the way Family Law shapes and impacts traditional representative negotiation.

It considers negotiation in the context of different dispute resolution processes or models found in Family Law (including pre-trial strategy, negotiation to seek settlement, mediation, collaborative law, parenting coordination, judicial settlement conferences, unbundled representation and dealing with the self-represented client).

Justice James Williams, Nova Scotia Supreme Court (Family Div), Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada will teach the unit. Justice Jim Williams holds the post of Associate Director of the National Judicial Institute and is Co-Chair of the Organising Committee of the Federation of Law Societies Summer Program on Family Law. He previously has been Host Chair & presenter at the World Congress on Family Law and Children's Rights.

Children & Family Law

This May intensive examines issues regarding parenting after separation and other aspects of children's wellbeing that arise in family law disputes. It will incorporate both legal and social science perspectives, drawing upon the latest research.

Delivered between 11-12 and 25-26 May 2012, it will be taught by Sydney Law School's Professor Patrick Parkinson AM, one of Australia's leading experts in Family Law.

Professor Parkinson served from 2004-2007 as Chairperson of the Family Law Council, an advisory body to the federal Attorney-General, and also chaired a review of the Child Support Scheme in 2004-05, which led to the enactment of major changes. He is currently the President of the International Society of Family Law.

Professor Parkinson is also well-known for his community work concerning child protection. He has been a member of the NSW Child Protection Council, and was Chairperson of a major review of the state law concerning child protection which led to the enactment of the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998.

Financial Issues on Relationship Breakdown

This August intensive unit will examine various aspects of the law concerning the division of property and spousal maintenance when couples separate, and compare Australian and American approaches.

It aims to offer a deeper understanding of the principles that ought to be applied in making financial adjustments when relationships break down and to examine reform options for Australian law.

The unit will take place between 3-4 and 10-11 August 2012 and will be taught by Professor Thomas Oldham, University of Houston Law Center, USA and former Family Court judge, The Hon. Stephen O'Ryan QC.

Professor Thomas Oldham is the John H. Freeman Professor of Law at the University of Houston. He has also been elected to the American Law Institute. He is a recognized expert in community property, family law, partnership, agency and business organizations law. He has been chair of the AALS Family Law Section and is a member of the Board of Editors for the American Bar Association, Family Law Quarterly.

The Hon. Stephen O'Ryan QC was called to the Bar in 1975 and took silk in 1990. From 1994 to 2011, he was a judge of the Family Court of Australia and served as a member of the Appeal Division of the Court. He is also an accredited mediator.

All units of study cost $3,540 for domestic students and $4,350 for international students. They are available to study as part of the following degrees:

Candidates can also enrol in this subject on a Legal Professional Development (LPD), Single Unit Enrolment or Cross-Institutional basis.

For further enquiries or to apply or enrol, please contact the Postgraduate Team.

Further information on the 2012 Sydney Law School Postgraduate Program

Contact: Greg Sherington

Phone: +61 2 9351 0202

Email: 6c130820481f5e5525182922435c1c76314e5001153d490837136d2e24