Family Law

Parenting Arrangements


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Reaching an amicable parenting agreement

Suitable arrangements for the care of children after the breakdown of a marriage must be in place before a divorce is granted by the courts.

Burbank & Brown actively encourages separating parents to reach an amicable agreement regarding these care arrangements to avoid often stressful and very lengthy court proceedings.

Ultimately, reaching an agreement will not only save you time and money but from our experience, the children often stand to benefit the most from knowing their parents can actually agree.

Parenting plans and consent orders

Where an amicable agreement is reached we can assist you with the negotiation and formalisation of either a Parenting Plan or a Consent Order.

  • A Parenting Plan is a written agreement between the parents setting out the care arrangements for children. It is not a legally enforceable agreement and does not need to be approved by the courts.
  • A Consent Order is a written agreement that is approved by a court. It can cover the care arrangements for children following a relationship breakdown as well as financial and property matters. The court must be satisfied that the orders are in the best interests of the children.

The Family Court of Australia website has some more useful information on parenting arrangements where an agreement has been reached.

Help to reach an agreement

Where an agreement cannot be reached regarding the care of children, the first step is to attend Family Dispute Resolution (mediation). Read more about Family Dispute Resolution and how Burbank & Brown can assist.

Parenting orders (for custody)

Where mediation fails to resolve the disputed issues, despite participation and genuine effort by the parties, the court has the ability to make Parenting Orders for the custody of children.

It is highly advisable to seek legal advice before applying to the courts for Parenting Orders. We also recommend you read ‘If you can’t agree on parenting arrangements’, on the Family Court of Australia website, which has some useful information.

Burbank & Brown offers expert advice and assistance in the application for Parenting Orders, and representation in court where necessary.

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