It’s a tradition as old as time at Best Wilson Buckley Family Law: taking a moment to reflect on the financial year that was, celebrate the successes and learn from the more difficult days, and to prepare ourselves for a bigger and better year to come.
The heart of our business lies in all of those people that let us into their everyday lives at a time of great upheaval. In return, we work with them towards resolution and as their guide while they build their new pathway forward. We’re incredibly grateful to all of our clients. It is our humble honour to be able to support you and we appreciate all your kind words, some of which have included:
“I very much appreciated your sincerity, directness and the scope of your knowledge.”
“Thank you so much for the invaluable assistance you have provided to me. Your patience and guidance is appreciated and valued.”
“It has been a long road and I am glad it is finally over. Thank you for all your help and advice, it certainly has been a pleasure to have you represent me.”
“Thank you for all your work. I feel certain the resolution would not have been as clear without your help. The last two and half years have been huge, and I am very grateful for all the practical advice and support you provided. I have the highest regard for you and wish you well for the journey. Thank you again, and my thanks to all your team.”
“Thank you for your ongoing support. You have made such a big difference to the anxiety levels that are generated in such a situation. We all greatly appreciate it.”
Improving the journey
Each year we learn from our clients and work towards improving what it is that we can do for them, and their family and friends, to make this experience a little better for each person we work with. This year we also teamed up with a client experience firm to build on this approach and work undertaken over the past few years, to look at the journey our clients take with us into the world of family law. It’s the small things that matter and we’ve worked to tweak each area of how we work, no matter how small it may seem, in an effort to improve the experience and outcomes of our clients. This is a work in progress that will never be finished for we can always do something better, different or more, to work with each individual person that walks through our door.
At the heart of how we practice is the understanding that the law is only one part of what is needed to create a renewed sense of possibility and craft a more meaningful outcome for our clients as they forge their new pathway. Accordingly, we’ve always worked closely with therapeutic professionals, tax and financial advisors, and other colleagues to achieve this, and we’re now fortunate enough to have our own in-house dedicated estate planning team in this pursuit. Our team assist clients to review their estate planning in the context of a separation or divorce to ensure that the future wellbeing and financial security of those important to them is suitably planned for, and to take one more thing off the “things keeping me awake at night” list. We look forward to continuing to grow and strengthen our capacity to help clients get that list down through internal appointments and important partnerships with experts in all areas of holistic practice.
This financial year we first embraced the concept of quarterly themes in our business as a means of increasing focus, strengthening our core and further building on what we have achieved for the benefit of our clients and our team. We kicked things off with a focus on “stability” through consistency, structure and responsiveness.
Next up we decided to change the pace and focused our quarterly efforts on “vision”, and creating a renewed sense of possibility. One of the things we proved as possible was to significantly reduce the volume of paper we print and store across our business to see if we couldn’t save a few trees here and there.
Our current theme as we head into 30 June is “connection”, to hear, understand and reach. This is about making sure we don’t lose sight of those that mean the most to us as things heat up at the end of a financial year. We’ll be spending a lot of quality time with each other! We will also be looking at ways and means of connecting, technologically and otherwise, with our clients and colleagues in a way that makes everyone’s lives easier and provides a true sense of connection. We’re all human beings after all.
Leading family law firm
We were named as a Leading Family Law firm in Toowoomba & Western Queensland for the fourth consecutive year in 2019 by the independent Doyle’s Guide. Kara Best was also named as a Preeminent Family Lawyer in the region, and as a Leading Parenting and Children’s Lawyer and Leading High-Value and Complex Property Lawyer in Queensland. The Doyle’s Guide recognises lawyers and law firms in all areas of practice with input from clients and colleagues alike, and it continues to grow year on year to recognise all of the wonderful practitioners we’re so fortunate to work with.
Our Carla Franchina racked up her second nomination as a finalist in the Family Law 30 Under 30 Award this year as well. It is an achievement to be nominated and named as a finalist once, let alone twice. This is a testament to the exceptional family lawyer that Carla is and just how fortunate we are to call her our own.
This year Best Wilson Buckley was also recognised as a finalist in the Toowoomba Business Excellence Awards, Banking, Finance and Legal category. As our hometown, Toowoomba is incredibly close to our hearts and we continue to be amazed at the support that this town has shown us over almost 10 years. Local really is lovely and no matter how far we roam, we’ll always call Toowoomba home.
While our North Lakes office opened in March 2018, and doesn’t technically scrape in for a review of this financial year, it is still very much worth celebrating. Under the exceptional stewardship of our Alecia Featherstone, our North Lakes office has become a part of the local community in that region. At the heart of our promise to clients is that we are there when they need us most, and we have delivered on being there for the thriving community of North Lakes. As have they for us. We’re fortunate to have formed some exceptional partnerships with local professionals, businesses and community groups that can only enhance what it means to be part of a local area.
The changing face of family law
Our business exists to respond to the inevitability of changing circumstances. We spend our days empowering our clients to respond to change and to find their new pathway and know the level of resilience and tenacity required to do so.
That doesn’t mean we’re immune to the powers and pitfalls of change and, in fact, have experienced some of life’s curve balls in this past year.
The Australian Law Reform Commission handed down their substantial report following their review into the family law system in our country and you can read more about the significant recommendations in an earlier article. While it is not yet clear what exactly this will mean for the future of family law in this country we are excited about the prospect of change, as well as hopeful for a meaningful role in that for the betterment of our clients and their families.
We’ve also experienced changes within our “family” at Best Wilson Buckley. There have been farewells and good wishes to those that have gone on to conquer new challenges over the horizon, as well as welcoming new faces, experiences and skills to the team. We also implemented a new leadership model across our business this year welcoming Luke Steel as Legal Partner (Brisbane) and appointing existing practitioners in Lynn Armstrong, Alecia Featherstone and Neal Wood to Practice Leader roles that strengthen our team and provide for the future of Best Wilson Buckley.
Our team is the largest in a specialty family law firm in all of Queensland, with 40 team members all up, including 17 lawyers. This means that we offer our clients, and each other, a breadth and depth of experience that can’t be beaten, as well as being ready for whatever it is that life and a new financial year has in store for us.