In 1996, the Commission for the Future of Justice and the Courts in North Carolina issued a report, Without Favor, Denial or Delay
, which recommended the establishment of a unified family court in North Carolina. This recommendation was the result of a number of factors, including the increase in domestic and juvenile matters that were crowding the district court docket, the growing complexity of such matters, children remaining in foster care far too long and delays in domestic matters that were often used to create a hardship on the other party.
According to the Commission's report, the purpose of a unified family court was to create an environment in which family related issues could be resolved in a manner that respected the rights of all family members, promoted the best interest of the family and helped families structure their own solutions. The Commission's report described a family court that would be accessible to all citizens regardless of their economic status. Moreover, since the nature and sensitivity of family matters within the court system are not best resolved through the traditional adversarial process, a family court should encourage and provide opportunities for non-adversarial resolution of family issues, such as mediation and other forms of alternate dispute resolution.