The future of family law will mean simplified services and improved timelines, the family law reform team at the Courts Service has said.
The unit is examining the entire user experience, including buildings, processes, information points, systems, and training, from the perspectives of staff, judiciary, and all other court users.
The team is currently taking soundings from front-line staff, managers, judiciary, and legal practitioners, as well as advocacy and NGO groups.
A document setting out an “ideal future state” for family-law buildings and facilities has been compiled, with design possibilities tested on a variety of user groups.
The design document is also being used to inform the design of the purpose-built Hammond Lane family-law complex in Dublin 7.
An integrated family-law IT system is also being tested, with the goal of producing a system that will allow for efficient processing of information to support courts, with the least amount of data input.
A prototype for an online information source has also been developed, to make court information easier to find, with a focus on the clear use of language.
A pre-court information pack will include consistent information about facilities available at or near court venues, how to plan for a day in court, and what documents to bring.
Videos, online content and leaflets will be available so that people can access the information in a way that suits them, with translation into other languages.
Legal practitioners may email their suggestions and ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.