What are Australia's Child Custody Laws?

July 9, 2015

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What are Australia’s child custody laws?

Well, we can start by saying they’re definitely contentious. Debate about their fairness floods Internet forums (where they still exist), online news comment sections and dinner tables across the nation. Are mother’s favoured? Do father’s get the short end of the stick? What legal action do you take if you feel rulings aren’t in your child’s best interests? And, exactly what are the laws and how are they subject to interpretation by the Court?

A big and complicated issue, we’re taking the time to dedicate this blog to informative, jargon-free stories and factsheets about child custody, child support and family law.

Today we start this mission by providing an overview (and hopefully some clarity) into what exactly Australia’s custody laws are.

Let’s start with some context around the Family Law Act, 1975

Australia’s child custody laws fall under the Australian Parliamentary Family Law Act, 1975. All-encompassing, the act has 15 parts and is the main Australian legislation overseeing divorce and separation, parenting arrangements, property separation, and financial maintenance involving children of divorced or separated de facto couples.

The original 1975 Act and subsequent amendments

The 1975 government led by Prime Minister Gough Whitlam saw a sweep of legislative introductions, including the Family Law Act. Of which, one of the main innovations, was the introduction of no-fault divorce.

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A change in government often means changing legislation

A controversial and often politicised piece of legislation, the Family Law Act has been subject to changes by both conservative and liberal Australian governments.

Of particular note are the Liberal Government’s 2006 changes, which included:

  • a progression towards compulsory mediation (before Court proceedings can be filed, in an effort to ensure matters do not reach litigation),
  • greater examination of issues involving family violence, child abuse or neglect,
  • more importance being placed on a child’s family and social connections, and
  • a presumption that parents have equal parental responsibility – NOT equal parenting time.
  • encouraging both parents to remain meaningfully involved in their children’s lives following separation, provided there is no risk of violence or abuse.

How does the Family Law Act apply to children? 

When there is a dispute concerning the custody of your child/ren, including where they will live and the allocation of time each partner has, the starting point is Section 65E of the Family Law Act.

What do you need to know if you’re a separating parent?

  • All matters pertaining to children are determined on the basis of who the child will ‘live with’ and ‘spend time with’
  • While we may commonly understand the term custody as where a child lives, the concept (as it pertains to the law) was abolished in 1995 with the Family Law Reform Act
  • Both parents are responsible for the care (including financial upkeep) of children irrespective of whether parents were or have ever been a couple
  • Parental responsibility includes the ability to make decisions in the day-to-day care and welfare of children, including where they go to school
  • Adoptive parents have equal rights as biological parents
  • However, whilst responsibility is generally shared 50/50 there is no guarantee of a 50/50 split in time shared with children
  • If the Court decides to allocate an un-equal share of time between parents, then the Court must consider allocation ‘substantial and significant’ time instead
  • However, there are some instances where a parent’s rights to see their children can be totally revoked, such as in cases with a history of domestic violence or sexual abuse
  • The Court is legally obliged to decide who a child lives with and how much time they spend with each parent on the principle of “in the child’s best interests”

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How does the court assess what’s in the best interests of the child?

The Family Law Act lists the factors courts must consider when ruling on what’s in the child’s best interests as:

• Any wishes expressed by the child. When interpreting these wishes, the court must give weight to any factors that could be relevant to the child’s ability to interpret their situation such as their age and level of maturity.

• The nature and history of the child’s relationship with each parent.

• How a change to the child’s circumstances may affect them. Such as how a child may be impacted upon if separated from either of his or her parents or any other person (siblings, grandparents, parent’s partners) the child has been living with.

• Any practical difficulties that may arise with custody arrangements. Such as the financial expense or lifestyle and education obstacles that may occur in long-distance parenting arrangements.

• The ability of each parent to provide for the child including his or her emotional and intellectual needs.

• Each parents attitude to the child and their demonstrated dedication to the responsibilities of parenthood.

• Any history of family violence.

• And any other facts or circumstances the court feels relevant to the case.

Useful family law resources:

Family law matters can be complicated, but you don’t have to wade through the waters of divorce and separation alone. There are multiple resources, both online and off, to help you and your family. Below are just some of the sites where you can find more information and access more assistance for your family law matter:

Relationships Australia

Relationships Australia is a leading provider of relationship support services for individuals and families. Their aim is to support families during trying times come to respectful resolutions. If you’re separating you can organise Family Dispute Resolution through their website at one of their many offices Australia wide. 

Family Court of Australia

Find out more about dispute resolution, separation and divorce, parenting and court procedures on this national government website. You can also download forms for consent orders, subpoenas and more. 

Family Relationships Online 

Family Relationships Online is a national government resource hub for families. Here you’ll find advice for carers, parents, grandparents and children on communicating effectively, separation, dispute resolution and an up-to-date list of their Family Relationship Centres, where you can get face-to-face advice and support. 

 

Are you going through a divorce or separation? Do you find the laws confusing? Or unfairly weighed in one party’s favour? Let us know more about your experience in the comments section below. Looking for legal advice? Contact a family law solicitor today by filling out a contact form. 

 

  • Natasia Stylianou

    I have not had any contact with my son for almost 12 months. Mediation was not attempted because my ex would not co-operate and I have a section from Relationships Australia to support this. My application for legal aid was knocked back. Now my ex has my son, other family members have weighed in and all I have is a piece of paper saying mediation was not an option. Family law in this country is a joke.

    • Father

      Family Law is a joke…look at the policies of who you vote….separations are more common than you think…we all need to stand together and vote for politicians who will act for strong changes to our Family Law….

      • Shannon Lalich

        Yep we all know the family law system is in need of changes.
        My husband has never had any issues of violence, drugs, alcohol or any other abuse. He pays his ex money every week without fail. His ex ended the relationship 4 months before the birth of his first and only biological child. He was denied the birth of his son, couldn’t cut the cord and was notified by message 2 hours after birth. He was then told his son was not having his surname. He then had to go without seeing his 5 day old child for 5 weeks over Christmas because the mother wanted to take him to qld.
        He has spent over $20000 in court costs in 2 years and has a lousy 74 hours a month and still not had any sleep overs with his boy. We now are fighting to keep her from moving my step son 2 states away. The long term psychological issues that impact on families really suck. We need equal rights, and equal shared care for capable parents.

        • John Christie

          Stay Order in your state with conditions to move only certain amount of kms from you she recieves money yet does nothing is a breech.Alienation and brain washing my kids kidnapped Abducted by SDA members a religious cult of manipulators liars thieves and adulterers with her bloody Parents aiuding and abeting to abduction and theft

        • Selenite Wing

          Shannon why do you think the dad should have a right to cut the cord? Oh my goodness!!! Labour has got to be the most vulnerable experience you can have. I think letting him cut the cord would be more of a violation than rape.
          I also think the early stages of parenting are extremely raw – especially the first 5 weeks!!!! She has just given birth!! And her body is recovering and attending the overwhelming needs of the baby – she does not need anyone demanding anything from her at this time!
          I think while you’re still breastfeeding it’s a very sacred space for a woman and her child, interference is selfish. The emotional influence on the carer who needs to be in the best form that they can be should absolutely be protected.
          He should be able to see the child when it’s a little more independent.
          Women aren’t machines they don’t just pop babies out for men who can do whatever they need done emotionally for them, the welfare of children doesn’t work like that. If he cared about his boy, he would care about keeping the mum feeling safe for the first years rather than stressing her out taking her to court. By feeling safe, in this circumstance it seems by leaving her alone! I find his actions very self centered.

    • Trudi Jane

      read your comment. Have you had any contact yet? I found Relationships Australia do not help but hinder. They actually have no rights to intervene. Would be interested to followyour case. I fought my 3 tear custody battle myself against my x, 2 lawyers and then a barrister. My daughter never goes to her father which actually defies the orders. trudi

      • Hannah Reed

        I wish i could do this!

        • Trudi Jane

          Hi, You commented on my comment. Feel free to ask me anything or just chat over email. My daughter came through it ok but it was a long story. There needs to be a better way for custody. I am now studying for my diploma in counselling. And I am trying to complete the story to publish in book form. My email is trudijane13@gmail.com.

          • Andi Lee

            can I contact you with my story and if you can provide some helpful tips for me

          • Trudi Jane

            Yes email me your story and I will correspondent with you. RegardsTrudi

          • Lisa A Thompson

            Hi. My partner is currently trying to get custody of his children due to neglect. we live in a different state to his kids and was actually in court today and was told that if he lived in the same state he would have gotten the kids. Now the courts r trying to make him move so he gets custody. I cant move for custody reasons with my children also. I just dont understand how they can make a man walk away from his home his relationship and his life so he can get his kids! I’m devastated as i know if it comes down to it his kids come first… but i think my real question is… can they make him move?

          • H J Browne

            The kids come first – lovers come and go.

          • Mukta

            Hi Trudy Jane, I am a mother of 5 month old and am in a bit of similar situation. Can I email you my situation for some advise.
            Thanks
            Kate

          • Trudi Jane

            Yes you can .trudi

            Sent from my Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 on the Telstra Mobile Network ——– Original message ——–From: Disqus Date: 17/2/18 6:41 pm (GMT+10:00) To: trudijane13@gmail.com Subject: Re: Comment on What are Australia’s Child Custody Laws?
            “Hi Trudy Jane, I am a mother of 5 month old and am in a bit of similar situation. Can I email you my situation for some advise. Thanks
            Kate”

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            Mukta

            Hi Trudy Jane, I am a mother of 5 month old and am in a bit of similar situation. Can I email you my situation for some advise. Thanks
            Kate

            2:41 a.m., Saturday Feb. 17

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      • Suzanne

        Any advice you have would be great. I’m going through relationships Australia atm and it’s starting to cause me quite a bit of anxiety.

        • Trudi Jane

          Most of the time we are convinced to do things that are not necessary in custody battles. Tell me your situation and I can tell you where you stand. For example if you have the children and there are no orders then that is the end of it.

          • Charlie Tide

            Hi Trudi,
            I appreciate your advice here.

            I am currently in the situation where I am wanting to maintain as much contact and freedom for me and my 21 month old daughter.

            Our situation is roughly as follows:
            The father and I had a difficult pregnancy, with many fights and near separations. However, he was put on the birth certificate and we continued to parent until she was 8 months. Following separation, we had a physical fight in which I was attacked and defended myself. Both of us called the police. I had no marks, he had marks… I was charged, and given an AVO. These charges have since been thrown out of court with no conviction, though I was unable to get any protection.

            Since, we have gone to mediation and he has demanded long days and overnights whilst my daughter is still breastfeeding. I have finally stopped all contact due to excessive harassment and toxic behaviour towards me infront of my daughter.

            I feel trapped in this area coparenting with someone who is incredibly toxic, though reluctant to apply for a Parenting Order through the courts as it may lead to limitations on my ability to travel. He has D&A issues, that have affected his ability to show up as per our agreements. And I have a letter from FACS stating I have been in an abusive dynamic, to which they have witnessed. So we have something, if it ever needs to go there. I just want to protect both myself and my daughter from having to put up with this forever.

            It has always been my vision to travel extensively with my daughter (and now my committed partner of a year) around the world before she reaches school age. I wonder how we can do this, and what my rights are.

            On my first trip away, her father threatened that he wouldn’t allow me leaving. And I thought this was the case. Though we have left to New Zealand for 5 weeks without any written consent form and were absolutely fine.

            I guess the best is to get in contact with Legalaid, and to see where I stand.

          • Trudi Jane

            Ignore him. Change your phone number, move house.
            Look after you and your child and ftw. He cannot force himself in to your world unless you allow it. Keep your own counsel, ignore him. You will be free and stronger

    • Ricky Couto

      thats so true, thats a joke i see your pain i got the same, my pain is that my ex partner put an AVO with pure lies so can’t get access to them
      all the best luck

  • mariya poll

    Me and
    my friend were arguing about an issue similar to this! Now I know that I was
    right. lol! Thanks for the information you post.

    http://www.mlhlaw.com/

  • Trudi Jane

    Yes… the system is a joke. Represent yourself and then fight to win. FTW. Be the spokesperson for your own child because the legal world of monsters do not CARE for anything but your money.

    • Father

      So true…it’s all about money, judges so often look at who’s paying the most for their solicitor/lawyer

      • H J Browne

        No they don’t – It’s just another day at the office and being a professional.

      • Sammie Damni Lees

        My friends judge commentd on the well known private girls school the child attends and said this will be fun I bet this will be expensive…WTF

    • Sammie Damni Lees

      Don’t do this if you have many assets or cash…you will lose it ALL

  • Father

    Defintely still favours the mothers in Australia…we’re in 2016 and women have equal rights in just about anything they like, where’s the equality in our Family Law Act!
    Too many mothers out there doing anything and everything to restrict or aleinate fathers.

    • Sharon White

      shame that this happens 50/50 child right to have both parents

      • H J Browne

        50 at one home and 50 at another has not worked in the USA or the UK children need a happy stable base and move in short periods back and forth.Both parents have right I keep asling what about the CHILDREN and their happiness… one night in one bed and then next week in another??? Would you or could you do that ??

        • Sammie Damni Lees

          No it’s just too hard moving from one home to another – I know because I went through it with my sister. I have a friend and she has the 100% of the time, all the medical, all the school fees and all the responsibility. She feels like a toothless tiger because she can’t move, change names or school move on with the children as the LAW is crap.

    • Dani

      I’m in that position right now I’m restrict my baby dad for reason his currently heavily on drugs and don’t want my precious baby boy round that kind of shit not all mothers out there are bad but some fathers don’t deserve to see there kids

    • Robert Basso

      I AGREE 1000000000000%. WE HAVE FEELINGS TOO. My Ex loves having this power over me. It just sucks 😔

      • Sammie Damni Lees

        Everyone has feeling – go for it fight for your children to the end. The Law is the Law I agree with HJ Browne.

    • Damian Cullen

      Thats so true. It’s even worse when the mother is using the child to hurt the father. They know their relationship is over and nothing that happens to her will hurt him, so denying access to the father is a sure fire way of getting that emotional reaction they wanted for themselves.

      • Dat Tran

        I totally agree with you so my Mrs did the same and all because we not a citizen of Australia and heard she is under investigations from ato and centrelink no and does this thinking itkk save her from trouble having kids in her custody

      • H J Browne

        Mother’s legal can’t stop a father from seeing his child. Take her to court, get a Family Court Report done, spend the money and get a good Lawyer.

        • Gun Bullety

          So a father can see his kids as long as he’s rich, got it.

          • Karen Vause

            YES as long as HE MAKES AND EFFORT!

          • Sammie Damni Lees

            Really? Are you for real? If you want to see your kids make a bloody effort instead of worrying about your bank balance.

    • H J Browne

      I don’t agree the LAW is the LAW a mother can’t just take your child.
      Stop whinging and get a lawyer!

  • Alex

    What about when the father yells at the child (5) for saying she has 2 dads (step dad) and is verbally abusive over the phone to both mother and child does this factor in or do I need to record the abuse as it happened often we’ve been seperated for a few years

    • Grandmother

      I would be.

    • Gun Bullety

      Why are you infuriating him so much?

  • Tiffiny Chalmers

    Hi to all. I am after some advice. My son has recently been to interrelate and is the father of a 10 month old baby girl.
    The mother refused to put him on the birth certificate so she could get parenting payment single.
    She is refusing to allow him to see the baby and recently lodged a fictitious avo against him. The police withdrew the avo as when they investigated it was all proven false.
    The mediators have told him the best he will get is to be able to see his child for maybe 1-2 hours in the mothers presence maybe every two weeks.
    Is this right? I just can’t believe this could be. Does anyone have a similar story?

    • Leann Bulloch

      Hi
      I’m in the same vote here. My son has a 14 month baby girl and the mother has given birth to her second child, which is refusing to put him on the birth certificate. We have just started seeing a solicitor, which is taking forever to see action. All my son is wanting is to see is his daughter, until the dna has been completed i have no hope in seeing something happen here. How can someone be so cruel and not given the father the rights to see his daughter. I would love to hear more of your story?
      Sad Grandmother

    • Thomas S C Brown

      You’re best bet would be to get your son to do a Paternity/D.N.A test. Then apply for a Parenting Order.

  • Sharon White

    why are the childs rights taken away in xourt if there is no danger to the child 50 / 50 custody regardless child best intrest to have both parents equally in all matters

  • nga

    im an aunty to a new born nephew just needing some advice at what the father has rights to as my brother. can someone help

  • Dani

    Just wondering as I’m currently carrying my ex bf child and his drug addicted and my ex mother n brother are too his my trying to get custody does she have rights too if his not name on the birth certificate

    • Trudi Jane

      They have no hope I can hell. This is your child, ignore them, move away. Have no contact with these people and live your own life happily ever after

    • Alana

      If name is not put on birth certificate then in most cases no. However court automatically assumes that your ex is in the father if you were living together for a certain amount of time, are married etc. Also, you can’t claim for child support if ex’s name is not down on birth cert.

  • Gypsy

    I’d like to see fathers expected to have not only “shared responsibility” but the expectation that they will have an equal share of TIME parenting too. I would like to work more but the kids dad basically refuses to have them more…giving the excuse “i need to mow my lawn” ha ha! I’d be happy if it was 50/50 financial, time (care) and responsibility….THAT is what would feel fair! I have a right to work and move about the world without being forced to care for our children while he works when he pleases and has them when he pleases!

  • Glenn

    Hi i want to know, who gets the custody of child if child is less than 2 years old and child can not live without his mother. Mother is a full term employee and father’s taxable income is less than mothers.

  • Lily Dove

    Thanks for writing on child custody. It is a very sensitive matter. This has to be dealt with utmost care. Please keep updating.
    Child Custody Lawyers Sydney

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    • Nicole maree Sinclair

      I have a 6 and a half year old daughter who has very little contact with her there are two other kids that he has spent time with not biological now he wants regular access to her and wants nothing to do with other kids she had a visitation right for 6 hours she cried when she left her brother and sister and now she doesnt want to go or talk to him

  • Gordon Smith

    I became a dad 3 weeks ago to a beautiful girl we called Alexis. Her mother broke up with me 6 weeks ago and in that first 2 days I had 15 hrs with them. All up that first week I had 22 hrs with my daughter, now after 3 weeks and one day I’ve had a grand total of 33 hrs with my daughter and I’ve never been out of sight of one of the mothers family members. I have no history of violence, drug or alcohol abuse. I’ve been to see Relationships Australia and she has her appointment mid June. So our daughter will be over a month old before she has her first appointment let alone the 2 more appointments we need before mediation can start. Surely this isn’t legal and what can I possibly do to speed up the process?

    • Thomas S C Brown

      My lil girl’s mother did the same thing to me bud, the other party can only “refuse/delay” it 2 times (in nsw that is & it’ll be about a month between appointments) before the mediation service like “relationships aus” will write you “Cert 60i”, then you can fill-out/lodge a parenting order through the Family Courts (Assuming you’re on the birth cert of your lil girl). I went to mediation hoping for 50/50 custody of my lil girl, offered up 4 different ‘Plans/options’ (not all 50/50) for the mothers consideration, she knocked back all of my proposed plans. Not one possible idea was put forward by her, and the mediators basically told me to prep myself for a long drawn out process. but the silver lining of that is that if she breaches the Court Ordered Parenting Order (with out an acceptable excuse), she’s accountable for it and that’ll weigh heavily in your favour regarding any court proceeding further down the track.

      Here’s a handy link to get you started bud:
      http://www.federalcircuitcourt.gov.au/wps/wcm/connect/fccweb/family-law-matters/parenting/if-you-cant-agree-on-arrangements/if-you-cant-agree-on-arrangements

      Best of luck with it mate and hope you get to see you youngen soon.

      • H J Browne

        That’s exactly the right thing – she breaches the Court Orders and you have her on toast…

    • Alana

      I’m afraid, not much.. my partner is in the same situation and has seen his daughter once for 30 minutes a few days after her birth. It’s now 6 months later and he’s still had no contact and won’t have contact until after November when the court orders contact. Try and bypass mediation if there are issues with neglect, d.v, drug and alcohol abuse etc and take it to court asap. Also, make sure you figure out whether your name has been listed on birth certificate etc, otherwise you may need to have a paternity test ordered to establish parenting rights. The test will cost about $1000.

  • megan griffith

    I’ve been alienated from my child, by my controlling in laws. My husband has Aspergers and didn’t care. I don’t do drugs and rarely drink alcohol. Yet I’m only getting 6 hours a week with her, supervised. Please help.

  • Robert Basso

    Hi, my name is Robert, I have a beautiful son who I love so much, he is 4 and a half years old… Me and my ex wife broke up when he was 1. I am an amazing father that strives to have my son as much as possible… he constantly asks me if he can stay with me and stay over at night. At this point my son sleeps over 2 nights out of 14 and I get him a little during the week… I would love to have him a lot more. My ex has always said when he is older that I can have him more… Yesterday she just told me she will never agree to it…
    My question is:
    When both parents are loving and dedicated 150% to their child, at what age can both parents get the child 50% of the time? It even me 45% ond her 55%?
    Thanks for your time😃

    • Paul Muddyman

      Hi Robert, in regards to your question I can give you the outcome of my case which hopefully should give you the answer your after, I was awarded 45% custody of my 4 year old daughter in an intensely high conflict case which spanned 15months with the final trial lasting for over 5 consecutive days in court, all of which was instigated by my ex partner who did not want me to have any custody of our daughter so every possible allegation of physical abuse, drug abuse, mental abuse were made against me. As to the reason for the decision made allowing me 45% time with my child was because of two seperate court councillors both stating in there reports to the court that over the course of there 25years experience as a councillor they had never seen a father and daughter under the age of 5years old hold such a close and meaningful bond which would of meant the father must of had a large part of the child’s upbringing since birth so any less than 45% time allocated to the father would not be in the best interests of the child. I was later told by my barrister that I was the first father ever to gain that much custody of a 4year old girl in such a high conflict case. So yes you can have a larger percentage of time with your child at such a young age but if your ex partner isn’t willing to consent to those orders then you have a much higher percentage of proof to show that it would be in your sons best interests to spend more time with you other than the time that already exists.

      • sally

        I think thats amazing! The fact you went to those lengths and had tp prove how much you love your child. well done!

    • H J Browne

      Go back to court get yourself a good Family Lawyer.

  • Jason Wells

    My 13 yo son wants to live with me but his mother won’t allow it there is no legal arrangement in place as to where he should live and I have weekend and holiday custody ATM can my son just leave and move in with me without his mothers consent

    • Thomas S C Brown

      As long as you’re on the birth certificate as his father there is nothing, legally (based off what you’ve said), stopping him from living with you.

      • Sammie Damni Lees

        Well said and true

    • Sammie Damni Lees

      After 15 its very difficult to tell a 15 year old where to live – the police wont get involved…

  • Deidre Walker

    If my kids want to live half with each parent but one parent says he is not prepared for all 3 to come live with him and he’s girlfriend is this fare or should he step up and be a father and take on more responsibility , shouldn’t he’s kids come before him and he’s lifestyle , where do I stand and the kids ?

    • H J Browne

      That’s my point to the MALE sex you have children you look after them..Not have alife or look after some other mans child because you are getting your rocks off with their ex-wife..
      CHILDREN COME FIRST*****

      • Sammie Damni Lees

        I agree well said! Once these men have a new life and woman it’s like all their past life is erased from history.

  • Timothy stewart

    Its a joke the mother is always in favour they get to make all decisions and they say its the children’s best intrest not to see to their father makes me sick that a bunch of pencil pushers get to judge peoples lives with a bunch of lies and say to me that my issues arent reality what about my kids reality when they want to spend more time with me their father the law and the court system needs a good wake up call when will fathers be compensated for lost time with their children instead the government puts their hand out for child support is that their meaning for compensation it is disgusting degrading and totally sexest

    • Ricky Couto

      agreed think that needs to be petition regarding the mothers using the kids for they own advantage

      • Sammie Damni Lees

        Who are these woman and what are their names? I’ve never seen a mother get it all her way??

    • Sammie Damni Lees

      Timothy stewart what country or era are you living in? For 100% custody and 2 children a mother get $18,000 do you think with private health costs, electricity, rent, education and the costs of living is fair? Who gets the degrading end of the stick when standing at the line at Coles praying there is enough money on your credit card to pay for food that night? Lost time more like you just like to whinge and place blame on others.

  • Timothy stewart

    Its not the children’s best interest its more like the mothers best interest

    • Sammie Damni Lees

      Sounding bitter – get up and fight and get a good lawyer.

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  • Maddi B

    My ex hospitalized me during pregnancy my daughter is 3 months and I am in hiding with her.. he always threatened to leave the country with her and used to keep me isolated from my family every time I left he went haywire threatening and harrassing my whole family.. I have aspergers and I am scared he his a huge manipulator he is very aggressive towards women and I have proof with my social worker who has met him.. he scared her so bad the security guards had to step in.. I am about to go to court about it.. he keeps saying he will get her one way or another.. I have a voice recording of him admitting to touching me when I didn’t want it my family have texts from him.. I’m scared for my childs safety shes 3 months.. is there any way he could still get unsupervised visits.. I am only 19 hes 32 so hes a much better talker than I am

    • Frankie

      Hey Maddie, did you get an out come? I’m currently going through a very similar thing with my partner now and am heading back to court next month

      • Maddi B

        Yep I got full custody, I had multiple witnesses that seen his abusive behavior on 3 different occasions, goodluck don’t be afraid stay strong!.

  • MANNY Reynolds

    My nephew has separated from his girlfriend and they have two girls. He is a dedicated father and his daughters adore him. Unfortunately the ex-girlfriend is an absolute horrible person who denies him access to his kids out of pure spite. If she is having a bad day or just has the shits with him, she will deny him visitation to his girls and she doesn’t even care if the girls are crying because they want their dad. To top it off, she is a rubbish mother. Anyone recommend a good lawyer?

    • Ricky Couto

      thats crazy, i feel his pain,

  • Leah

    A friend of mine has a son (4 yrs old turning 5) who is currently under the care of his grandmother (my friend`s mother) thru arrangement with DOCS. The mother of the child surrendered him to DOCS voluntarily so she is aware of the arrangement and is in regular contact with her son, thru the grand-mother. My friend is currently incarcerated and is due to be released late 2019. The mother and father of the child have an amicable relationship. My friend’s intention when released is to be able to look after his child. What can he do now (whilst in gaol) to start these proceedings?

  • This is very informative blog about the child custody. Thanks for sharing with us!

  • Steps to restore a broken marr

    How to restore a broken relationship and marriage issues contact >> chiefpriestakpeosilamaspellcast@ https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/30e74e7cb236f2de7cf5bc27ce55dd421f8ca759147a9101b735d25916408717.jpg yahoo.com

    • H J Browne

      ???

  • Hayley Dennis

    Hi, currently have a parenting plan decided amicably between my sons father and I at the time that we have 50/50 7 days with me then 7 days with dad. I think this arrangement needs to change when our son starts school because his dad lives 55 minutes away from me. So i asked his dad if we could change the agreement so that out son is with me monday to friday and with his dad every weekend and school holidays. Hes dad said no and refuses to make any changes and wants us to find a school halfway but that’s alot of travel for a little boy. Wondering if I have grounds to fight this.

    • Alana

      Speaking from experience here. Given that you’ve been able to agree on things up till now which shows you can co parent relatively well together, you would probably be better off compromising and finding a school half way. That way you can retain your peace of mind rather than engaging in a lengthy court battle which will cost you time, money and huge amounts of stress. 25 minutes isn’t that bad for a young child to be travelling and they can usually cope with it at the age of 5 or so. The worst that will happen is that he may fall asleep in the car.

  • David Apat

    Not sure if my ex has had a child she has a new partner but the child is at the age when we were together how can i find out if in fact she has had a child and get her dna because i have no contact with her but i need to know if she has had a child and if its mine

  • jonny

    i have a 4 year old daughter with my ex and we are still going through the family court process,,,my ex has a new partner who i haven’t meet yet and she sleeps at his place 3-4 nights a week and takes our daughter with her even though our daughter doesn’t like going there for sleep overs ( she has told me and a family member) is there anything that can be done to stop this ,,the mother only thinks of her self and has lied about alot of things that i can prove,

  • Ralph Diec

    my wife took my child from the US and moved to Australia. She wants child support for a kid I don’t get to spend any time with. She has assets in the US. Parents got a nice house in Australia, now she’s moving into a new home. Yet the system makes me pay child support when I am living in a 600 sqft studio with a foldout couch
    Where is the justice?

    • H J Browne

      YES IT IS YOU ARE THEIR FATHER!! Be a man and pay for your offspring.

    • Sammie Damni Lees

      The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction or Hague Abduction Convention is a multilateral treaty developed by the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH) that provides an expeditious method to return a child internationally abducted by a parent from one member country to another.

  • Worried wife

    My ex moved overseas and we were meant to move over a few months ago but on boxing day got a text mesage saying he wanted to separate after 15 years and two kids.
    He takes stilnox regularly and has come back in feb and jun/jul and want some the family back and then. In September states his got a new partner that lives in a different country to him.
    He has only seen the kids for 39 hrs in nearly 12 months.
    He wants 50/50 of the children but comes back to our country and the new partner lives ten minutes away from us and doesn’t even tell them his in the country and spend all his time with her. He states he loves them and misses them but never puts them first. I don’t get it. The kids try to ring him But he never returns there calls.

    We are going to court and I find it hard not to fight for my kids as they require routine and structure and as he doesn’t live in the country he doesn’t have a place of residency. No family near by either.

    The kids are both very active and I’m a coach and manager of there sports teams and we have tight routines to go from one thing to another as they are in different locations.

    We never used to fight but now I can’t even have a conversation with him as he feels it’s his right to just rock up unannounced and expect me to change our plans. I don’t think it’s fair on the kids or myself as we need to start a new life as he has already moved on and the kids arent a priority.

    • Sammie Damni Lees

      He is just another selfish man – hope the new girlfriend is watching closely – he will do it her next!

      • Worried wife

        I found out just before Christmas that they had been contact each other since March 2015. I was a trusting wife.
        And even when we were trying to sort things out, he spend over $5000 on her for a photo shoot, clothing, jewellery and then my children got $150 each from him in a gift voucher. Clearly he has no idea what the kids like or need and really doesn’t give a shit about them.
        Glad I get to cuddle and kiss them everyday as they are so precious and I’m
        Not thinking of one thing. I couldn’t live with myself if I know I was the reason to break a family up and his just a frighten idiot to run off with a flight attendant that live in a different country.

        It’s a joke and I hope he becomes a lonely old man as his kids refuse to talk to him and haven’t seen him for 6 moths even though his been back in the country but spends his time with the new girlfriend and I have friends that have seen him and informed me and we didn’t have a clue he was in the country. Another reason why his kids aren’t important to him.

  • Daniel Curll

    my two sons aged 13 & 10 both live with their mother after our divorce & for past 3 yrs have had little or no contact with them until the last 9 mths . This is because of my ex wifes “ruling” after an incident yrs ago she sent me a letter from her not a lawyer etc but her stating that would not be able to have boys as usual on every second weekend & holidays & could only ring them on a certtain day each week at night . that lasted for a litte while then no contact ,dispite several attempts by me . there is no legal proceeds of custody etc & within last months of phone calls my 13 yr old has decided not to talk to me any more , anyways i have contact with my 10 yr old & have also had him for 4 weekends (fortnightly) in this time he has enjoyed our time togeter & gets very upset having to go back to his mother & has asked if he could live with me fulltime as he is not happy with current arrangement & his living with his mother her new boyfriend & twins my ex had with him & also his elder brother & her parents .i want to know what i need & how to go about next time i have him & not take him back & have legal document etc to make sure doesnt back fire ,so if anyone could let me know as i want to do this by christmas

  • Emily M

    A friend of mine has concerns for her female child (10) sleeping with her 28 year old father every night even though this child has her own room. Now this mother did what was in the best interests of her child when she was 18 and she was working full time living with her aunt whos in a wheelchair and decided she couldn’t allow her aunt to look after her child so she gave her child to her dad. Now he has made her life hell accused all her family, her long term partner and friends of touching their daughter and held back from letting her see her recently in the last 6 months he has let her take her daughter out regularly and near her family with his consent that he accused of touching his daughter. the only person she inst allowed to take their child near is her partner of 7 years. Now keep in mind they did mediation and it did nothing mediators sided with him as soon as he mentioned family ,friends partner touching this child. Thier child is babysitting her 5 year old neice and her grandad who is disabled and left in charge of 2 children. and yet hes still allowed 100 percent custody. The mother has 3 other children ddoesnt drink doesnt do drugs. he has no other children drinks the law system is a joke

  • Jennice Evans

    hoping for advice. My daughter handed over her then 4 month old daughter and then 3 year old to their father for contact. He refused to return them. No orders in place. My daughter managed to take the then 3 yr old back but could not grab the baby. The baby is now over one and the other over 4 yrs. The father did not attend mediation and a conference failed. During this time he managed to take back the 4 yr old. My daughter has only seen the 1 yr old in 10 months and the 4 yr old twice. The father has now stopped any form of contact as the 4yr old becomes highly distressed screaming to be with her mother. My question is without any parenting agreement or FLC orders, if my daughter goes to the 4 yr olds day care and removes her will she be forced to have to hand her back by police or courts. My daughters distress and my granddaughters distress is making life so hard

  • Chris Tolfrey

    My ex partner is stopping me from having contact with my son and her mother is in on it pressures me about my tax return even when I have done it and expects me to harass ato I love my son but it seems her and her mother and friends have been trying to destroy me and not letting me have any input or even talk to me about my son I know nothing and it scares me I have never had any control in regard to my son her and her mother have tried to control every aspect of me and my son I’m not in the slightest a danger to my son.

  • bernadette

    My ex has my two kids I haven’t seen them in over a month now he won’t let me at all I’m seeing a lawyer through legal aid I’m hoping it goes well

  • Ellie Smith

    I’m currently in a situation where our mediation was successful and we derived a plan for 3 nights with dad a week. Now he is in prep, dads got bags of drugs in his bathroom draw with rolled up money, every other week has the “flu” and it’s only the one nostril running, he smokes pot daily and requires it to eat food, has 2 DVO convictions against him and 1 is current, has had no license for past 8months from DUI which he got done for on his way to collecting my son, he has a constant flow of questionable people coming and going through his house and he seems to think he will be automatically given 50/50. Please tell me this isn’t how it will work…

  • Jason

    Looking for advise.
    My ex is from another country and still resides there, last year I paid for his and her flights and she gave me our son for him to live here in Australia and for me to be the 100% carer of him. I have been living in Melbourne and but am now relocating to Hobart and told her this and she has now told me I can’t move him there. She is not a resident nor is she living here. Do I need to see a lawyer ?

  • Kellie Thompson

    I know that there is a law now that a mother can be charged for not letting the father of her children see them but what about when the father does it to the mother, what rights does the mother have

  • Sasa Pejc

    I am living overseas with my son ,we are Australian citizens . My ex is living in Australia. I will be returning with my son to Australia . My son would want to live with me.
    At what age of the child does the courts ask the child where he wants to live?
    Can anybody answer that question

  • Al

    My husband and i have decided to separate. I feel like he is emotionally abussive towards me. He’s now telling me that he is going to have 50/50 custody of our 7 month old who is breast fed. I’m trying to keep it amicable but to clarify he spends most of his time on the phone and was asked to change her nappy (it was wet) he “forgot ” he has no idea of her routine and works ridiculous hours and travels for work. Would he get 50/50 ? He’s playing mind games with money etc because I’m in maternity leave still and have no money

  • Frieda

    Hi, my daughter just went through 4 years of this Child custdy in the Brisbane FFC only to have her child ripped from her who never lived with her father, isn’t on the birth certificate no proof of his paternity, plus he has several DVO’S, breaches and criminal offences plus amphetamine use. She had legal aid but they ended up not supporting her at the most critical time, she allowed family contact centre visitation but his constant whispering to the little girl wasn’t seen by them and he denied it making her look the bad guy, when mentioning it to the contact centre they denied it, of course they would, they’re not going to admit not doing their job. Then the out of centre contact started, the little girl came back covered in bruises which myself and my other daughter witness on questioning the little girl she said dad did them. So my daughter informed the police and the CPS all of which did nothing for her case. The trial happened two days of gruelling questions and I was even yelled at by the judge because I wasn’t supposed to be in the court as I was witness for my daughter, I had no idea of knowing this, but being yelled at to get out, I thought at my age this Judge was a bully. During the trial there wer many lies told by the father and the CRW at the last interview with the CRW my daughter had she knew he was very biased against women so her guard was up as the previous report was full of mistakes as to what was said. She recorded everything at the last meeting with him but it was without consent so it couldn’t be used in court, but this man was asked questions which he blatantly lied. The CRW Would not speak to the child because she wanted to tell him of what she was concerned about, he blatantly said no I don’t want to talk to you, and accused my daughter of coaching my granddaughter. My granddaughter is 7 and a very bright little girl with quite a memory she was not coached. So his report was for the child to live with the father who lives about 9 hours drive from where she lives, he moved there after he started the court proceedings. The reason being because the child is also of part aboriginal and this is what was written by the Judge.” she looks so aboriginal in the video and photos
    She put that in the mothers care The child may be made to feel embarrassed and an outcast due to her aboriginal heritage
    This considerations race wise ways heavily in determining the the parenting arrangements”
    I and everyone I have spoken to feel this is racist, talking a child away from a white mother because of the child’s colour. We are a multicultural family with English European Australian background the father is not full aboriginal with Spanish and other cultural also in his heritage. The CRW, ICL and Judge all didn’t look past this, they took a little girl from the only family that she knew for the past 7 years she was settled, safe and loved by her mother siblings Grandparents, aunts, uncles cousins friends at school and local community all taken from her in an instant, taken 9 hours away, to live with people she doesn’t know go to a school she doesn’t know, live with a man who can now be back on his drugs and have anger issues again. There is no contact allowed for two months how frightening for this little girl, then it’s contact in a contact centre near him on his allowing her. My daughter used the last bit of funds she could scrape together to appeal but the lawyer who looked at the judges final order made it water tight, there’s no appeal, no way of regaining custody.
    The worse thing is they came and took her over Easter on Sunday, my daughter was unaware what was happening until the day before easter the school texted her and told her they received a court order that the father was to pick the child up from school, so she did what any mother would do as at that time she didn’t know that the judge made a ruling, she raced up and found her daughter locked in a room pleading with the headmistress to let her see her so she did and sh took her with a struggle and went home to us so we could say our good byes. He inlisted the Fed police and Sunday four came out to collect her, they were obviously under the impression that she was in danger which when they arrived realised and speaking to them this was false. Everyone has been manipulated by this man. The minute he received the paperwork he applied to centrelink for the appropriate payment as well.
    It’s just unbelievable how an abusive man on drugs can gain custody of a little girl, with racist overtones, and the Justice system does nothing to protect her.

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