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NSW What Happens If Family Court Orders are Breached?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Eliza66, 22 September 2015.

  1. Eliza66

    Eliza66 Member

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    We had family court orders finalised early in 2014. The children are teenagers aged 14 (15 in Jan) and 17 (18 in March). Orders are for the kids to live with me (mother) and spend alternate weekends plus half holidays with their father who lives a two hour return trip away.

    The 17 year old has a part time job and is sometimes travelling an hour to get to work if the shift is on a weekend he is with his father and returning, he also gets picked up after parties and driven an hour home. ... But the main problem is, our daughter is really struggling with going every alternate weekend & for a week during the holidays (plus a week about for 8 weeks at Christmas). She misses out on normal teenage activities on the weekends she is away, she gets really homesick and says she feels depressed. Her father won't acknowledge that the kids want to do things with their peers at home. I think I have to organise mediation to discuss the orders which are just not working anymore ... But I am almost certain that their father will continue to push for the kids to be court ordered.

    I wonder what could happen if the kids just said they weren't going ... If he called the police to report a breach do you feel the police would force the kids to go and charge me???
     
  2. Ponala

    Ponala Well-Known Member

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    Police have no powers in regards to Family Law Court Orders. It is not a criminal offence and they can't force the kids to go.
     
  3. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

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    The police can't do anything. The father could file a contravention order against you, but the kids are of an age where their views would be given considerable weight by the court, so rather than make a contravention order, the court might prefer to change the existing parenting order, perhaps to something like "That the children spend time with the father in accordance with their wishes". It's a fairly standard outcome for parenting proceedings around children of that age.

    It's unlikely orders would be made for the older child at all - court proceedings take a long time, so they would likely be 18 or even 19 by the time the matter was determined.

    I think you should organise a family dispute resolution conference, perhaps even consider a child inclusive family dispute resolution conference. Child inclusive conferences involve the children speaking with a psychologist or counsellor about their wishes in a safe environment, and those wishes being communicated to the parents so both are aware of them before making a decision.
     
  4. Eliza66

    Eliza66 Member

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    Thanks Allforher, Yes, that is what I thought I might do, I'll contact a service that does child Inclusive conferences. I was the respondent to the court orders and I had requested the kids spend time in accordance with their own wishes, but their father pursued stricter orders and to save going to a hearing and after costs already up to $15k, I agreed. I'm trying to avoid court a 2nd time but we need an impartial person to listen to the kids..... ! I assume if he won't agree at the conference the only alternative is to go back to court. I'll try for the conference first.
     
    #4 Eliza66, 26 September 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: 28 September 2015

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