Hearing the Voice of the Child in Parenting Matters

In parenting cases, the ”best interests of the child principle” is the paramount consideration, whether parents are trying to reach agreement on arrangements at mediation or when they have a dispute before the Court. In determining what is in the best interests of the child, the Court has regard to two primary considerations, namely, the […]

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Evaluative mediation in Family Law financial cases – observations and distinctions

The classical model of mediation is “facilitative mediation” during which the mediator’s primary function is to encourage meaningful and constructive dialogue between the parties, without providing any comment or opinion on the substance of the dispute or providing suggestions or “options” to assist the resolution of the dispute. The requirement that a facilitative mediator refrain […]

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COVID-19 | Protecting your property outcome in Divorce during the COVID-19 crisis

At this early stage of the health crisis caused by COVID-19, many people are worried about how they are going to make ends meet, particularly in view of the negative impacts upon the domestic economy and the global economy. Uncertainty about the duration of the economic effects will inevitably concern parties in financial cases before […]

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Financial Injunctions in Family Law: Preserving the Assets

In some circumstances, a party (that is, a spouse or third party intervener) may be required to prevent or restrict another party from acting in ways that may reduce the assets available for division under a final property settlement.  In these circumstances, an injunction may be a potent and effective remedy to preserve the asset […]

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Children’s Contact Services – what, why, when and how?

Following the breakdown of a relationship, it is important that parents attempt to make appropriate agreements for the care of their children, particularly their ”live with” arrangements and their ”spend time” arrangements (historically called ‘’custody’’ and ‘’contact’’ or ‘’access’’, respectively). When parents are unable to communicate directly with each other, or there are fears about […]

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The ALRC Family Law System Review Discussion Paper – what can we expect?

The Australian Law Reform Commission (“ALRC”) will issue its Discussion Paper in October 2018 in relation to the pending Family Law System Inquiry (also known as the ‘Family Law System Review’). The Discussion Paper will set out the Commission’s preliminary proposals for reform and invite feedback from all sections of the community. What can we […]

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New Child Support (Assessment) Act amendments permit administrative termination of binding child support agreements where care arrangements reverse or reduce

Recent amendments to the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 (Cth) (“the Act”) have simplified the way that binding child support agreements can be terminated in certain circumstances. It is no longer necessary for a party paying child support under a child support agreement to apply to the court to terminate the agreement where circumstances have […]

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Impact of Family and Domestic Violence Leave entitlements on Family Law cases

As part of its four yearly review of modern awards, the Fair Work Commission (FWC) has been considering submissions on the potential inclusion of family and domestic leave into those awards (see previous article here). The FWC has now determined that such leave should be provided for in awards and has finalised the model clause […]

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