In the recent case of Boyle and Zahur and Anor (No 2) [Family Court of Australia Full Court 263] the Full Court allowed the mother’s appeal against the previous decision and in so doing allowed the mother to relocate overseas with the parties two daughters who were aged 12 and 11 for the duration of a posting she had with a government agency. The posting was to be for a period of 2 – 4 years.
Prior to the mother relocating overseas the children had lived with the mother and had spent alternate Friday, Saturday and Wednesday nights with the father pursuant to consent orders.
The Full Court remitted the case for a rehearing. In doing so they said:
“There is no issue that the children love their father and want a relationship with him. The children would miss their father if they moved to country H. However these matters are the axioms upon which the vast majority of so called “relocation cases” proceed. It is the task of the Court to fashion orders to best meet the best interests of the children by references to proposals of the parties and by reference to the reality of the situation”.
These are often difficult cases but ultimately the Court will make orders that are in the best interests of the children. The Court is often hesitant to make orders that prevent one parent from continuing to live their lives and maintain an income even if that involves a relocation away from the other parent.
We are often asked to give advice at Coode & Corry Solicitors in regards to relocation cases.
If the parties are unable to come to an agreement in relation to where the children live then it is a matter for the Court to weigh up all of the factors including the children’s views on the arrangement, whom the children have been living with, the difficulties in the other parent spending time with the children, and the affect on the children not having time with the parent who has not relocated.
If you have a parenting matter where either you want to relocate or the other parent wishes to relocate please attend our office to have a free 30 minute consultation with Hamish Williams of our office who can provide you advice in relation to such claim.