Resources

Obligations to minimise the negative impacts of the adversarial system

The current review of the family law system has focused attention on the limitations that lead to dissatisfaction with process and outcome in resolving family disputes. The many responses reflect different views, but there is a common theme regarding the adversarial frame that defines a dispute once it enters the legal system. This is destructive…

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What you can expect from the court system

Litigation   The inevitable consequence of separation is that decisions will need to be made. In many cases these are easily identified and parties can work together to manage their conflict, and move forward with dignity and minimal cost to themselves, their extended family, friends, and society.   In some cases this is not possible…

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Summer Reading- The Lost Man by Jane Harper

Jane’s story revolves around several generations of a farming family. The main characters are the three adult sons, but their parents and children are also an important part of the novel. It is concerned with the death of one of the sons, and the attempt to understand what was happening for each of the characters,…

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What to expect from an ICL in Family Dispute Resolution

Operating as both a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (FDRP) and Independent Children’s Lawyer (ICL) has given me a unique insight into the role of the ICL in Family Dispute Resolution (FDR). My experience is that every ICL has a different approach to FDR and works towards very different outcomes. This leads me to ask the…

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The life long impact of Trauma on Children

A recent study has made a strong correlation between childhood trauma and life long social, emotional and health outcomes. Exposure to early adversity affects brain development, and leads to a greater likelihood of engaging in high risk behaviours and developing serious health conditions such as heart disease and cancer. This type of childhood trauma is…

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10 Tips for Parenting with Someone you Hate!

  1. Minimise direct contact in the presence of the children- limit to common courtesies. 2. Do not say or imply anything negative about the other parent or their family in the hearing of the children. 3. Use a communication platform for the exchange of important information such as the App MyMob or www.ourchildren.com.au. 4.…

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Family mediators- what to expect?

Are you unsure of what to expect when you engage a family mediator to assist with a family dispute? Are you confused by the differing descriptions of facilitators as Family Dispute Resolution Practitioners and/or Nationally Accredited Mediators? What does it mean to be a professional mediator? Join me for the next instalment of our Conversation…

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Dealing with the presence of danger

Join me for our next Conversation Series when I will talk about this fascinating topic with experienced family lawyer Paul Roberts. We will base our discussion on the book by Gavin De Becker “The Gift of Fear”. Gavin De Becker is a personal security expert and behavioural consultant who deals in his book with the…

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Case Studies-Refusal, Resistance, Estrangement and Allegations of Alienation in Parenting Disputes

As an Independent Children’s lawyer, I have recently had some extremely difficult cases where I have been significantly challenged in my attempts to support the children’s rights to have an ongoing and meaningful relationship with both of their parents. These cases have reinforced for me that every situation is unique, each must be approached on…

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Alienation in Parenting Disputes

 Recently experts and professionals from around Australia and overseas gathered in Adelaide to explore issues relevant to the “alienation” of children [1]. There was general agreement that this involves a very small subsection of separated families. From a child’s perspective, alienation can be seen as the result of parents pulling them into their conflict to…

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