This research was undertaken to provide evidence for the Family Justice Review, and to inform family justice policy developments. It involved analysis of a sample of 376 public and 402 private family cases closed in 2009. The aim was to gain a better understanding of the profile of public and private law cases involving children and how they progress through the family justice system.
The research addressed a number of features of public and private law cases in the sample, including: the types of orders applied for, the orders actually received, how long cases last, who was involved in cases (mothers, fathers, grandparents etc.), the numbers and ages of children involved, and the number and type of expert reports. In private law only, it addressed legal representation, mediation, and domestic violence or concerns about abduction or harm to children.