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VIC Intervention Order and Custody of Children - Family Law Agreement Help

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by DumbMum, 11 March 2015.

  1. DumbMum

    DumbMum Member

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    Hi All. Hopefully someone can help me here. I have tried to take out an intervention order ( restraining order) against my child's father for various things but long story short it has gone to a 6 Month Undertaking.

    This week I have been to see a solicitor to try and get a Family Law Agreement (mediation didn't work) in place. I have applied for Legal Aid so I know it might take a while. As it stands, my child's father has been contacting me via text message to ask how the child is (on 3 occasions). I have replied to these texts as I was not sure if this was allowed or not as the 6 Month Undertaking says he cant contact me by any means but then it says he can contact me to make child arrangements.

    I was advised by my solicitor that he shouldn't be doing this but it's ok to reply. Now he is asking to see the child this weekend. I have not replied to this as I am trying to get a Family Law Agreement in place which he wouldn't know about yet. What do I do from here besides stress out? Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Sarah J

    Sarah J Well-Known Member

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    Hi there,

    Your lawyer is correct when saying that replying to his text messages does not mean you waive the intervention order. Strictly speaking, he has breached the terms of intervention by texting you to ask how your child is doing as this is not "to make child arrangements". However, a court will likely sympathise with the father as he is merely trying to stay in the loop about the welfare of his child and the law presumes that a child should have both parents involved in their lives. It is also in the spirit of allowing the father to make child arrangements.

    Texting to ask if he can see your child this weekend if allowed under the intervention order. Obviously, you are under no obligation to respond. However, not responding will worry the father and he might send further (and more anxious) texts, or calls. It would be seen as cooperative and showing good will to respond and make genuine attempts to arrange a mutually suitable time for him to see his child.

    It may help to bring up with the father the idea of making a custody agreement together so that when your lawyer finishes drafting the agreement, it is not presented to the father out of the blue, which could make him feel excluded from the process and powerless. To get the father to agree with the custody agreement and to protect your interests under the agreement, it may be best to involve the father in negotiations, even if it is just asking for his input in writing or via email.
     
  3. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    I agree with the above, and an agreement isn't an agreement until you have either the father's consent or a court order. Obviously, as the name suggests, you can't have a court order without first going to court, so rather than exacerbate conflict and limit the likelihood of the father agreeing by springing a plan on him, you would be better off including him in the process.
     

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