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Family Law Section

Visit the Family Law Section website for more information: Inquiries can be emailed to or phone (04) 889 4466.


The Family Law Section recognises the special nature of family law practice.

It is active in family law reform activities and as a means of supporting and assisting in the professional development of family lawyers.

Law reform objectives

To assist and promote the reform of family law in New Zealand, to promote and uphold the rule of law as it affects family law, and to contribute to the standards and regulation of the practice of family law.


The Family Law Section was established in 1997 and its membership comprises family lawyers, judges, legal academics, legal executives and government employees.

Its governance is through an Executive Committee of family lawyers elected by members. Law Society staff provide managerial and administrative support.

The Family Law Section represents the interests of approximately 1,000 family lawyers and provides services and support for its members relevant to the development and practice of family law in New Zealand.

The Section has an Advisory Panel comprising 14 members who have been appointed by the Family Law Section Executive to draft submissions on government bills, discussion documents and Rule changes.

There are also 27 regional representatives throughout the country, appointed by the Executive who provide a vital link between members and the Executive, particularly on local Family Court practice.

Membership benefits and activities

The Family Law Section provides support, benefits and advocacy to members. It also aims to establish and maintain professional training in all areas of family law.

The Family Law Section provides regular information on changes and developments in family law, and publishes a quarterly magazine, Family Advocate. The Section website has a members-only area with membership services and information. The Section is active in family law reform and prepares and delivers submissions on all relevant developments in the law or changes to the Family Court system.

Family Law Section members participate in the NZLS CLE Ltd programme of family law seminars and conferences, and the Family Law Section also provides mini-seminars and forums for family lawyers to improve their practice and discuss family law issues with colleagues. The Family Law Section also organises social functions and facilitates networking opportunities among members.

Find a family lawyer

The Family Law Section provides a special public website service called Find a Family Lawyer.

This enables the public to locate a lawyer who specialises in particular aspects of family law – such as guardianship, paternity, mental health or relationship property.

Find a Family Lawyer is located at .

The Family Law Section members only website page also has a search function which allows members to locate family lawyers in different regions who also undertake court appointed roles or act as instructing solicitors for family law barristers.

Last updated on the 13th May 2020