A website aimed at streamlining divorces and helping couples avoid expensive legal fees has been launched in Australia. The site, called Amica, was developed by National Legal Aid with A$3 million ($2.06 million) in government funding, reports Xinhua news agency.
It uses technology to guide separating couples to amicable agreements on parenting arrangements and property settlements without hefty legal bills. The settlement tool uses an Artificial Intelligence (AI) program to search through a database of past court judgments to provide a recommendation on how a former couple should divide their assets based on their unique circumstances.
Website for Streamlining Divorces Launched in Australia
A man told News Corp Australia that he and his former spouse used amica in its testing phase after being told that their divorce would cost each party A$20,000 in legal fees. "It was absolutely fabulous. Amica helped us create a document that has allowed us to move forward with the care of our kids, which was a godsend," he said.
"It's unfortunate that people go through this but, at the same time, if there is a third party or a system like amica that helps you come to common ground, that makes the conversation that little bit easier. "It's taking a lot of pressure off us when it comes to working out what the next step is."
According to data released by The Separation Guide, a divorce information group, there has been a 314 percent increase in the number of couples thinking about separating during the coronavirus pandemic. Research by National Legal Aid found that 78 percent of Australians going through a divorce were willing to use a service like amica.