VIC Recovering Daughter and Granddaughter Under Family Law?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Rowan, 12 December 2017.

  1. Rowan

    Rowan Active Member

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    I have been searching for my daughter M S and her daughter C for some years now with no clear result.

    Freedom of information has rejected my request for information on any grounds. My own enquiries through hospitals, police, welfare, and government housing areas have brought no results.

    I think that my đaughter M also had two other daughters after C, and that this has been hidden from me along with everything else regarding my own family's whereabouts. The secrecy cast over what has happened to my own family since I lost contact with them in 2012 is incredible, and whilst no one will tell me anything, I believe that their enforced separation from myself has endangered them to a high degree.

    Please help me regarding which form of legal action I need to take under family law in order for me to find out where they are, and how to contact and communicate with, ie: recover my own family.

    Thank you and best regards.
     
  2. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    Let me start by expressing my deepest sympathies. It must be an incredibly distressing situation.

    Look you could apply to court for a location order. Your best bet is a conversation with a family law solicitor. Sadly, I do feel that a solicitor will advise that the court has limited power in such situations.

    I hope someone on this site can post some advice that is better than my suggestions.
     
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  3. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    My suggestion is to first get legal advice. Legal Aid offers free consultations for family law matters, so this is a good place to start.

    Outside of that, the path perhaps best taken is to try and organise a family dispute resolution conference. Legal Aid offers this service as well, and they will do the legwork of trying to locate your ex. If they can't find her, then you'll be issued a s 60I certificate, which enables you to file an initating application for parenting orders with the Court.

    If you were to file an initiating application for parenting orders, you'd have to try and serve your ex with the application. There's a few ways to do this, but perhaps the most 'resourceful' would be a process server. If she still can't be found, then an affidavit is filed indicating that the other party couldn't be located.

    At your first hearing, you can ask the Court to make a location order, which is where the Court orders a variety of government authorities (DHS, Legal Aid, etc.) to disclose to the Court the last known address of your ex so that she can be served with the initiating application. Note, however, that a location order does not mean that address will be disclosed to you, but it at least means she can be made aware of proceedings and invited to participate.

    If she chooses to respond, then the matter should proceed as an ordinary parenting matter. If she doesn't, then it will likely proceed undefended and the Court may order the assistance of Federal Police to track down your ex and the child.

    This process can take some time, but if there's nothing complicating the matter - no DVOs, no criminal records, etc. - then it means the Court has no reason to delay making parenting orders of some description. In any case, it's probably the best avenue you can take for finding out where your kid is and reinstating a proper relationship with her.
     
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  4. SamanthaJay

    SamanthaJay Well-Known Member

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    M sounds like an adult daughter of the poster and therefore C is his granddaughter. Unless she has had these children as a teenager. Why would the poster not being able to find them, have anything to do with family law?

    M is well within her rights to cut contact with a family member even if it is her father. I believe the poster may attempt to have contact with the grandchild through family law.
     
  5. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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  6. SamanthaJay

    SamanthaJay Well-Known Member

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    Yes, the grandchild link I understand but I was starting to think something had changed along the way and I was missing something!
     
  7. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    My apologies, I must have misread.

    All the same, children have a right under s60B to know their grandparents, so if the OP was to seek parenting orders (as they are entitled to do), they could also seek a location order as part of the process.
     
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  8. Rowan

    Rowan Active Member

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    Thank you to everyone who has responded to this thread, the answers have provided me with relevant info re family law and areas I can work with, or through, in finding family. Appreciate your comments.
     
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