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WA Which Court Decides Custody of Children?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Marklscot, 17 July 2016.

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  1. Marklscot

    Marklscot Member

    17 July 2016
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    Just wondering if anyone can answer what happens when a couple from the UK with an infant child move to Australia on permanent residency visa and one partner then wants to separate and return home but the other wants to stay, who would get custody of children?

    Would it be decided by an Australian or UK court?

    Would the length of time they've been in Australia be relevant?
  2. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

    23 July 2014
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    Since the child is in Australia, it would currently by governed by Australian law, but under Australian law, there is no statutory rule about who the child lives with following separation - the Family Law Act 1975 tells the Court what it can and can't do; it doesn't tell the parents what they can and can't do, and the Act only has force if one of the parents asks the Court to intervene due to an inability to reach an agreement between themselves.

    So, how does this affect you? Basically, the child can stay or go depending on what the parents decide for themselves.

    If you can't reach agreement, though, you can file an initiating application with the Court seeking parenting orders. The Court will make a decision based on what it is satisfied is in the best interests of the child.

    Before you can file for parenting orders though, it is necessary that you and the other parent attempt to negotiate an agreement between you first by attending a family dispute resolution conference. I believe Legal Aid can provide some guidance on this, so it would be worthwhile giving them a call.
    @thelawbundle likes this.

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