Family law trial practice tools

Family law trial practice tools

Acting on a recommendation from the 2015 Family Law Legal Aid Services Review, we developed a suite of practice tools in consultation with an advisory group of family lawyers. These tools are for lawyers doing legally aided work. 

Practice tools for parenting disputes

Practice tools for ICL matters

These tools are also available from the National ICL website.

Practice tools for financial matters

These first three tools are still in development. We’re keen to hear your experiences of using the tools and your feedback about how they could be improved. Please contact the Family Law Professional Support Lawyer at

Who needs tools?

Whether you’ve just started practicing in family law, or are a seasoned family lawyer running concurrent trials and supervising juniors, the tools are designed to help practitioners:

  • manage key information about the client and their matter
  • consider issues of particular relevance in legally aided matters
  • foster a strategic and systematic approach to litigation preparation
  • help with file handovers and supervision,
  • streamline VLA compliance checks and quality audits.

It won’t be a condition of a grant of aid that panel lawyers use the tools. We want to make sure that lawyers who sign up to do legal aid work have access to resources that support their practice.

Video on trial preparation

Watch a video of barrister Belle Lane’s 90-minute masterclass on trial preparation for guidance on applying the tools in your practice. Panel practitioners can access this recording by by entering the VLA Vimeo password. To obtain the password, contact the Professional Legal Education team at or on (03) 9269 0124. These tools are for lawyers doing legally aided work. 

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