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Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) Outcomes Study

Jun 1, 2019

In 2017, the Relationships Australia National Research Network implemented a large project funded by the federation. The study was designed to generate evidence on the outcomes of RA FDR services, in both parenting and property disputes. The study employed a longitudinal survey design with quantitative data collected through client surveys at multiple points in time, as well as interviews with a subsample of participants to further investigate experiences and perceptions of the dispute resolution process.

The research was completed in 2019. The study provides sound evidence for the efficacy of the federation’s family dispute resolution services, not only in assisting separating couples to reach agreement in parenting and property disputes, but also in reducing distress, improving adjustment to separation, and facilitating communication outside of FDR sessions. The RA FDR Outcomes Study was jointly managed by RA Victoria and RA Queensland.

Several journal articles outlining the findings have been submitted for publication.


Heard, G. and Bickerdike, A., 2021. Dispute Resolution Choices for Property Settlement in Australia: Client Views on the Advantages and Disadvantages of Family Dispute Resolution and Legal Pathways. Family Court Review, 59(4), pp.790-809.