Child custody remains one of the major reasons for contentious divorce cases in Australia. Spouses often disagree on parenting plans for various reasons and when they cannot reach an agreement, the court proceedings are initiated. But not all child custody disputes should end up in court.
If you are facing the prospect of a divorce, it is a good idea to consult a good family lawyer in Blacktown as early as possible. Not only will they help you make informed decisions but also try to negotiate child custody on your behalf before opting for the courts.
To give you a better understanding of how a family lawyer can help you during this time, we will show you the roles they play. Thereafter, we will give you a glimpse of the child custody process in Australia.
Why You Need A Solicitor For Your Custody Case
The prospect of ending a deep relationship that you have invested years of your life in can be nerve-wracking. But the outcome could be a lot worse if you go through this without expert help, especially when there are children involved.
It is human nature to want to be part of your child’s life. But when you are separating with your spouse, this could easily become your worst nightmare. In situations where you and your partner do not see eye to eye, such a dispute can make things worse.
When you are in the middle of a separation that is characterised by such a dispute, it will be harder for you to see the bigger picture. That is part of the reason why you need a solicitor.
Even though amicable agreements on child custody are rare, a solicitor can have a major impact on how your dispute turns out.
At Tajik Lawyers, we have experienced solicitors who will use all the possible dispute resolution mechanisms to help you and your spouse reach an agreement in a mature and open manner. We will draft a parenting plan that is fair to you and your former spouse and which completely addresses the child’s needs.
We follow this approach when you have no concerns about your former spouse’s ability to properly take care of your child. But If they are violent or actively participate in habits and activities that affect their parenting abilities, we can help you file for sole custody.
When Parenting Plans Can Fail
In some cases, spouses fail to agree on a parenting plan, even after a lawyer has tried their best through dispute resolution mechanisms to help them resolve their conflict. At this point, court proceedings will be initiated.
There are also situations where the parenting plan that you agreed on with your partner fails to work out. Some of the reasons as to why this happens include:
- Unclear custody terms
- Not putting the children first
- Life changes that complicate with the agreement
- A parent might undermine the other.
- Co-parenting might turn out harder than anticipated.
When your dispute goes to the court, you might be ordered to attend a child dispute conference. This happens in nearly all family law processions. A family consultant will be assigned to your case. Their main role will be to help you resolve your parenting arrangement disputes.
What Happens During A Child Dispute Conference?
A family consultant will meet with you and your former spouse, either together, individually or using a combination of both. They will examine the issues at the centre of your dispute and possible arrangements that can be made for your child or children.
Your lawyer is not allowed for the conference so you will have to prepare for the conference adequately in advance. Please note that it’s compulsory to attend this conference.
After the conference, the family consultant will present the outcome of the meeting to the court. Based on the findings, a further child dispute conference could be requested or a family report recommended.
In case the latter happens, the court will use the report to settle the matter.
In summary, understand that child custody can be a long and exhausting process, but you will be in a better position of getting a favourable outcome or receiving justice if you have a good family in Blacktown by your side. We are here for you.
We provide a free initial telephone consultation and can arrange urgent out of hours appointments with a solicitor if need be. Contact us on 1300 579 085 should you wish to discuss your case today.