The biggest issue in anyone’s life is the problem they are encountering at that point in time.
Your marriage may be at an end but your child or children’s lives and futures should remain the main focus for both parents. At Dimond Family Lawyers we recognise marriage breakdowns that involve children can be far more volatile than those without. When people are facing a marital breakdown that includes the possibility of losing regular time with their child or children, the emotional crisis can be exacerbated or even become volatile.
The saddest of these incidents have been reported on news and current affairs programs where the crisis has resulted in the suicide murder of a spouse and their children.
Marriage breakdowns involving children do not have to end this way.
There are many options available to assist people to navigate what can sometimes be a rocky and uncertain time. At Dimond Family Lawyers, our team of understanding and knowledgeable professionals can help you to achieve a mutually beneficial outcome from the outset, which may limit the negative impact separation can have on your children.
At Dimond Family Lawyers, we can help you to negotiate functional, enforceable parenting arrangements for your children.
“Can we avoid going to Family Court if we agree?”
Of course you can.
In our experience, parents are generally best placed to devise the most practical and efficient plans to care for their children.
If it is possible for you and your partner/spouse to agree on the care arrangements for the children, we can assist you in the preparation of a structured Parenting Plan. A Parenting Plan is not an enforceable document, but is a strong statement of the intention of the parties. A Parenting Plan can be used as evidence to support any future Family Court Application for parenting orders of a similar structure, if necessary.
If it is possible to agree financial and children issues on a final basis, and you want an enforceable Family Court Order to ensure both parties adhere to what has been agreed, then it is still not necessary to go to Court.
We can encapsulate the terms of your Parenting Plan in a Form 11 Application for Consent Orders which is filed with the Family Court and considered in Chambers (i.e., not in Court) by a Registrar. If your Application for Consent Orders is approved by the Family Court, then these terms become enforceable as part of a Family Court Order.
“What if we can’t agree?”
If you cannot agree on the care arrangements for the children, the Family Court require parties to attend mediation before making application to the Family Court for assistance. Extraneous factors such as evidence of the existence of family violence can provide an exemption to parties having to attend mediation before commencing Family Court Proceedings.
For more information regarding mediation options and exemptions, please see our FAQ.
If mediation is unsuccessful, then you will be provided with a Section 60i certificate, which entitles you to make application to the Family Court for assistance in resolving issues in dispute.