FCFCOA Lighthouse model to expand to 15 registries

The Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia (FCFCOA) has announced the expansion of its Lighthouse model to 15 family law registries.

This follows Tuesday’s budget announcement of $71.5 million in funding, consisting of $63.75 million of additional resources (over the four years to 2025-26) for the broad expansion of the Lighthouse model to address family violence and the appointment of a number of Indigenous Family Liaison Officers. A further $7.7 million has been provided in ongoing funding for the expansion of the Fair Work small claims jurisdiction.

Chief Justice Will Alstergren AO said the courts’ number one priority had been to shine a light on the scourge of family violence, improve the outcome of matters involving family violence, and to keep vulnerable parties and children safe.

“The Government is to be commended for committing to the provision of funding and prioritising the Courts’ aim to reduce family violence and risk in our society,” he said.

“The funding enables the Courts to expand the Lighthouse model which has demonstrated significant improvement in the risk screening, triage and assessment of family law matters. The funding, provided through the National Plan to End Violence Against Women and Children, demonstrates an ongoing commitment to the prevention of family violence in Australia.”

The expansion of the Lighthouse Project will mean that risk screening, triage and differentiated case management, including the Evatt List, will be:

  • available in 15 family law registries, increasing from three during the pilot period, and
  • offered to any party filing parenting only, and parenting and financial orders.

The Lighthouse Project has been successfully piloted in Adelaide, Brisbane and Parramatta since December 2020, receiving positive feedback and strong support from the legal profession and key stakeholders.

Read more on the funding allocation. Read the profession update on the Lighthouse Project, or view the Lighthouse Project expansion factsheet.

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