Child Custody Lawyers
- shared parenting
- time spent with children
- parent’s rights
- recovery orders
- child support
It is vital that you gather legal advice as soon as possible, before or after separation. As your most trusted custody lawyers, we will help you understand your rights, entitlements and obligations and the best way to protect your children’s best interests moving forward.
As prepared custody lawyers, we will advise you and strongly negotiate for an agreement to be made between parties without taking the matter further legally.
If this is not possible, we can assist you through Family Dispute Resolution, and Federal Circuit and Family Court if required. This is usually the case if your situation is more complicated, including if there has been a history of family violence or if child abuse is involved.
If the matter does go to court, our experienced custody lawyers will fiercely defend and advocate for you and your children. We have extensive experience in the Federal Circuit and Family Court and negotiating complex agreements, so you can be reassured that you have the best in the business on your side.
At all stages, we will listen to your wishes and concerns and assist you in a way that will reduce conflict so you can move on to a peaceful co-parenting relationship. As your most trusted child custody lawyers, we have connections to counsellors, psychologists and a support network that can help you and your children with the stress of the separation.
How is Custody of Children Decided?
Equal shared parental responsibility (which is a presumption that the court will make unless rebutted in cases of family violence or child abuse) means that both parents have equal say in long term matters relating to their child.
Examples of such a matter would be a decision on the child’s schooling/education, health and religion.
A common misunderstanding however is that the presumption including the right for both parents to spend equal time with the child.
When considering whether a child should spend equal time with both parents, the court will make the equal shared care presumptions, if not rebutted, and then judge each case based on the best interests of the child and reasonable practicability of equal shared care for the parties.
A non-exhaustive list of factors which the court might take into consideration include:
- The parenting capacity of each parent and the nature of the relationship between parent and child
- Whether there has been family violence or there is a family violence order
- The physical proximity of both households
- Whether there is a consensus between both parents on day to day life matters of the child for example diet, healthcare.
- If there is a disagreement on the above, the probability that the parents can reach an adequate compromise.
- The opinions and wishes of the child in relation to equal parenting arrangements, and the reasons behind them.
If after considering factors such as the above, the court finds equal shared parent arrangements impractical, the court may then examine where it is the best interests of the child for one parent to have residential care and another to spend substantial and significant time with the child.
Whilst not an equal parenting outcome, such an arrangement will ensure both parents having a real involvement in the everyday life of the children.
- Parties can agree to an arrangement for the care of children either verbally or in writing.
- If parents of children wish to, they can put their agreement relating to the care of their children into writing by way of a parenting plan or consent orders filed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.
- We can help formalise your agreement by engrossing an Application and consent orders and filing the documents with the court.
- If parties cannot agree upon a suitable arrangement then we can write to the other party.