Skip to content

How to Make Changes to a Parenting Order

How to Make Changes to a Parenting Order

In Australia, parenting orders are made by a court to determine the arrangements for the care, welfare, and development of a child, including where the child will live and the time they will spend with each parent. These orders can be varied, or changed, if there has been a significant change in circumstances since the original order was made.

To vary a parenting order, you will need to file an application with the court and provide evidence of the change in circumstances that has occurred since the original order was made. This may include changes in the child’s needs, the financial circumstances of the parents, the living arrangements of the parents, or any other relevant factors.

The court will consider the best interests of the child when deciding whether to vary a parenting order. In making this decision, the court will consider the child’s physical, emotional, and educational needs, as well as the capacity of each parent to provide for those needs.

It is important to note that the court will generally only vary a parenting order if it is necessary to do so in the best interests of the child. If you are seeking to vary a parenting order, you should consider seeking legal advice to help you understand your options and the likelihood of success.

Parenting orders are made under the Family Law Act 1975 and are designed to ensure that the best interests of the child are met.

Parenting orders can be made in relation to children of any age, and can cover a range of issues including:

  • Who the child will live with
  • Who the child will spend time with
  • How much time the child will spend with each parent
  • The communication that will take place between the child and each parent
  • Any other matters that the court considers relevant to the care, welfare, and development of the child.

Parenting orders can be made by a court as part of the process of separating or divorcing, or they can be made separately in cases where the parents are not married but have a dispute over the care of the child. If the parents are able to reach an agreement about the arrangements for their child, they can apply to the court for consent orders, which will formalize their agreement. If the parents are unable to reach an agreement, they may need to attend court to have a parenting order made by a judge.

Section 70NBA: Variation of a Parenting Order

Section 70NBA of the Family Law Act 1975 sets out the legal test that the court must apply when considering whether to vary a parenting order. This section states that the court must not vary a parenting order unless it is satisfied that there has been a change in circumstances since the order was made and that the variation is necessary to meet the best interests of the child.

The court will consider a range of factors when determining whether there has been a change in circumstances, including:

  • Any changes in the child’s needs
  • Any changes in the financial circumstances of the parents
  • Any changes in the living arrangements of the parents
  • Any other matter that the court considers relevant
  • The court will also consider the best interests of the child when deciding whether to vary a parenting order. In making this determination, the court will consider the child’s physical, emotional, and educational needs, as well as the capacity of each parent to provide for those needs.

It is important to note that the court will generally only vary a parenting order if it is necessary to do so in the best interests of the child. If you are seeking to vary a parenting order, you should consider seeking legal advice to help you understand your options and the likelihood of success.

Section 70NBB: Varying a Parenting Order With Parenting Plans

Section 70NBB of the Family Law Act 1975 sets out the legal test that the court must apply when considering whether to vary a parenting order that has been made in accordance with a parenting plan. This section states that the court must not vary a parenting order that has been made in accordance with a parenting plan unless it is satisfied that:

  • There has been a change in circumstances since the order was made
  • The variation is necessary to meet the best interests of the child
  • The change in circumstances was not contemplated by the parenting plan when it was made

The court will consider a range of factors when determining whether there has been a change in circumstances, including:

  • Any changes in the child’s needs
  • Any changes in the financial circumstances of the parents
  • Any changes in the living arrangements of the parents
  • Any other matter that the court considers relevant
  • The court will also consider the best interests of the child when deciding whether to vary a parenting order. In making this determination, the court will consider the child’s physical, emotional, and educational needs, as well as the capacity of each parent to provide for those needs.

It is important to note that the court will generally only vary a parenting order if it is necessary to do so in the best interests of the child. If you are seeking to vary a parenting order that has been made in accordance with a parenting plan, you should consider seeking legal advice to help you understand your options and the likelihood of success.

Varying a Parenting Order: Final Parenting Orders

Final parenting orders are court orders that determine the long-term arrangements for the care, welfare, and development of a child. These orders are made in cases where the parties have been unable to reach an agreement about the care of their child, or where there are significant disputes that need to be resolved by a court.

Final parenting orders can be varied if there has been a significant change in circumstances since the order was made. To vary a final parenting order, you will need to file an application with the court and provide evidence of the change in circumstances that has occurred. The court will then consider the best interests of the child when deciding whether to vary the order.

It is important to note that the court will generally only vary a final parenting order if it is necessary to do so in the best interests of the child. If you are seeking to vary a final parenting order, you should consider seeking legal advice to help you understand your options and the likelihood of success.

Using Mediation to Change Parenting Orders

Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution that involves the use of a neutral third party, known as a mediator, to facilitate communication and negotiate a resolution to a dispute. Mediation can be an effective way to resolve conflicts, including disputes over parenting arrangements, as it allows the parties involved to have more control over the outcome of their dispute and to come to an agreement that works for them.

If you are seeking to vary a parenting order, you may be able to use mediation to help resolve your dispute. In this case, you and the other party would attend mediation sessions with a mediator, who would help you communicate and negotiate an agreement about the changes you are seeking to make to the parenting order. If you are able to reach an agreement, the mediator can help you formalize the agreement in a consent order, which can then be filed with the court.

It is important to note that mediation is voluntary, and both parties must agree to participate in order for it to be effective. If you are unable to reach an agreement through mediation, you may need to go to court to have the parenting order varied by a judge.

 

Get Our Help

We have a team of family lawyers and mediators who can assist you in CanberraPerthAdelaideMelbourneSydney, and all other locations in Australia. Get legal advice from us today!

Get Help from Mediations Australia