| Latest Political News | Wednesday December 5 2012 10:04
Progress has been made on the most significant changes to the Family Court since it was established in 1981.
An omnibus bill passed its first reading in Parliament last night.
It includes establishing a new Family Dispute Resolution Service, aimed at helping people settle disputes without going through the court process.
Courts Minister Chester Borrows says the costs of the court ballooned by 70% between 2004 and 2011.
"The changes in the bill respond to widespread concerns that the court is not able to focus enough on the most serious cases, has processes that are difficult to understand, and has seen its cost greatly increase in recent years."
Opposition parties say the bill will mean added costs for those who wish to access Family Court services.