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Children In Family Law FAQs

Who gets the children?

When a relationship breaks-down, the Courts will focus on what is in the best interests for the children of that relationship, not the parents. As such, the following are considered to be foremost in the Court’s mind:

  • Enable children to have meaningful relationships with both their parents, to the extent that this does not compromise children’s best interests
  • Protect children from physical and psychological harm, neglect and violence
  • Ensure children receive proper and adequate parenting
  • Ensure parents fulfil their duties and responsibilities.

As a parent, unless there are issues of abuse or violence, you can reasonably expect to:

  • Have ongoing involvement in your children’s lives
  • See your children regularly, including on weekdays, weekends and school holidays and
  • Be involved in ongoing decision making about your children.

We can assist with issues relating to children and answer any questions regarding issues relating to children. Please call our office on (07) 5532 3199 to arrange an initial conference.

Who gets the children in de facto relationship?

Irrespective of whether you were in a traditional marriage, a de facto relationship or a same sex relationship, the Courts will treat children in the same manner as a traditional married couple.

The Court will decide what is best for the children.

We can assist with issues relating to children and answer any questions regarding issues relating to children. Please call our office on (07) 5532 3199 to arrange an initial conference.

What is a Parenting Order?

A Parenting Order is an order made by the court regarding the living arrangement and the times the other party spends with the children. It is binding and enforceable on all Parties.

A parenting order can be made:

  • by the parents applying, by consent for a parenting order which they have previously agreed on; or
  • by the court, after a hearing.

If the parties agree by consent, orders that are made are just as binding and enforceable as if the orders were made by the Court.

Sometimes circumstances change, for example, one party gets a job interstate, so  Parenting orders may be amended by amending the parenting plan or, or if the parties do not agree, amended orders can be made by a Court.

We can assist with parenting orders and answer any questions regarding issues relating to parenting orders. Please call our office on (07) 5532 3199 to arrange an initial conference.

What happens if one party doesn’t agree?

If the parties cannot agree on issues relating to Children, they can ask the Court to make a decision on who children “live with” and “spend time with”.

The Court considers the children’s best interests when making a decision. The Court must consider a range of factors when deciding what is in a child’s best interest including but not limited to:

  • Enabling the children to have meaningful relationships with both their parents, to the extent that this does not compromise children’s best interests
  • Protecting children from physical and psychological harm, neglect and violence
  • Ensuring children receive proper and adequate parenting
  • Ensuring parents fulfil their duties and responsibilities.

The Court will also make orders about, and who will have, “parental responsibility” for children.

If a Court is required to make a Parenting Order, in addition to considering the children’s best interests when making a decision, the Court will also make Orders about who will have ‘parental responsibility’ for the children. Parental responsibility relates to decision making about the children. Generally, the Court will order that parties have equal shared parental responsibility for children, even if the children are mainly living with one party.

If the parties have equal shared parental responsibility, all decisions must be made by both parties together, particularly concerning long term issues such as education, health and religion.

We can assist with the Court process and answer any questions regarding the Court process. Please call our office on (07) 5532 3199 to arrange an initial conference.

My partner wants to take our child overseas – how do I stop them?

If you are being threatened or you believe your child or yourself are in danger please contact 000 immediately.

The Australian Federal police maintain a watch list for family law matters. This watch list is designed to alert the Australian Federal police to the movement of children when they are leaving Australia.

If you are concerned your ex-partner wants to take your child interstate or overseas, contact our office immediately and speak to one of our solicitors.

At ABKJ Lawyers, we specialise in attending to any issues concerning children as a matter of priority. Should you have any concerns about your child, we recommend you contact our family lawyers on (07) 55 323 199.

If you're looking for an experienced Gold Coast family lawyer or divorce lawyer you can relate to, contact ABKJ.

Family Law FAQs