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Note: Section 121 of the Family Law Act 1975 makes it an offence, except in very limited circumstances, to publish or distribute a report of a case or part of a case, including information contained in a Judgment, which identifies parties, related or associated persons, witnesses or others involved in the case. A breach of the section is a criminal offence. The section also sets out certain limited defences to criminal liability. An example is where the Court has expressly authorised the publication.

  • Yates & Woodford and Ors (No. 2) 2018] FamCA 590

    01 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Best interests – final parenting orders made for the three oldest children to live with the maternal grandmother and spend time with the mother – interim parenting orders made for the two youngest children to live with the mother and spend time with the maternal grandmother pending the mother’s relocation to Victoria.

  • Walden & Cooper [2018] FamCA 595

    06 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Parenting Responsibility – Where allocation of parental responsibility for the children was in dispute – Where the mother sought sole parental responsibility and the father sought equal shared parental responsibility – Where the Independent Children’s Lawyer supported an order for equal shared parental responsibility – Concluded the presumption of equal shared parental responsibility does not apply because there are reasonable grounds to believe the father engaged in family violence – Concluded the evidence otherwise demonstrates the children’s interests would be best served by the parties being vested with equal shared parental responsibility – Ordered that the parties have equal shared parental responsibility.

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child lives – Where the parties agree the children should continue to live with the mother – Ordered that the children live with the mother.

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child spends time – Where the mother sought a slowly graduating regime culminating in the children spending each alternate weekend and time during the school holidays with the father –  Where the father sought a flexible arrangement to accommodate his work roster – Where the mother conceded the father poses no risk of harm to the children – Where the mother abandoned her proposal for the children’s permanent supervision whilst in the father’s care  – Where the distance between the parties’ residences makes it impractical for the children to live with the parties for ‘equal time’ or to spend ‘substantial and significant’ time with the father – Where the children would benefit from a stable and predictable routine – Where a gradual expansion of time with the father is in the children’s best interests due to the eldest child’s anxiety about being away from the mother and the youngest child’s infancy – Ordered the children spend time with the father in accordance with a regime which culminates in each alternate weekend and school holiday periods.


  • Thurston and Anor & Loomis and Ors [2018] FamCA 597

    09 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Where various parties filed applications for costs – Where the first respondent relied heavily upon two written offers of settlement – Where both offers were rejected – Where the terms of the two offers of settlement would not have given the late applicant a better outcome than what she received from the final orders – Where neither the first applicant nor first respondent were wholly successful or unsuccessful in the overall proceedings – Where the circumstances do not justify any of the parties receiving any costs order in its favour – Where all extant costs applications are dismissed.

  • Smithson & Lorenzo [2018] FamCA 578

    31 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom the child should spend time with – Mother seeks child to have no contact with the father – Father and Independent Children’s Lawyer seek child spend supervised time with the father on an interim basis – Where the mother alleges sexual abuse to the child by the father – Where child has not spent time with the father since 2014 – Whether the mother’s parenting capacity would diminish if child had a relationship with the father – Whether the father poses an unacceptable risk of harm to the child – Where no unacceptable risk of harm found – Where orders for supervised time adequately mitigate any such risk – Where the court must balance the risk of the mother’s diminished parenting capacity with the benefit to the child of having a relationship with the father – Where therapeutic assistance and supervision are likely to manage the mother’s parenting capacity concerns – Where the trial could not produce final orders – Interim orders made for child to live with mother and spend supervised time by a psychologist with the father – Matter to be reviewed in twelve months.

  • Sloan & Sloan [2018] FamCA 610

    01 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – BANKRUPTCY – operation of section 60 of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 (Cth) – where the right to litigate a section 79 application is a personal right that does not pass to the Trustee in bankruptcy.

  • SCVG & KLD (No. 5) [2018] FamCA 594

    08 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Setting aside – where applicant failed to attend previous proceedings – where no reasonable explanation for the failure to attend proffered – application to set aside refused.

  • SCVG & KLD (No. 4) [2018] FamCA 593

    08 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – Application for security for costs – application for security for sums not related to costs in the present matter but related to other outstanding costs orders and child support debt – application for stay pending compliance with outstanding costs and child support orders - capacity of the Court to prevent its processes being used as an abuse of process – desirability of applicant for a stay on the grounds of abuse of process to precisely identify the nature of the abuse of process rather than simply the facts said to constitute the abuse of process - application for transfer of the matter to another judicial officer.

  • Pyke & Leon [2018] FamCA 592

    20 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Parenting – time children spend with a parent – international travel ‑ orders made in the best interests of the children.

  • Perton & Hungerford [2018] FamCA 583

    02 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Child related proceedings – Where the child has Autism Spectrum Disorder – Where the child has not spent time with the father since July 2015 – Where the mother seeks orders for the child to spend no time with the father – Orders made for the father to observe in the child’s ASD therapy – Order for the mother to have sole parental responsibility in relation to child’s health and ASD therapy – The right of the child to have a meaningful relationship with both parents – Acknowledged unacceptable risk in removing child from mother as primary security figure  – Order made for the matter to be relisted in 2 years’ time when an update on child’s ASD therapy and the father’s involvement is before the Court.

  • Peirera & Gangumi [2018] FamCA 615

    13 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – EVIDENCE – where the applicant sought a certificate pursuant to s128 of the Evidence Act 1995 (Cth) – basis for issuing s128 certificate not arising until witness is compelled to answer the questions or to give the evidence – application refused.

  • Malic & Cussens [2018] FamCA 577

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Parenting Orders – Where mother seeks that the child neither spend time nor communicate with the father as he poses an unacceptable risk of harm to the child  – Where father seeks that he spend alternate weekends and half of school holidays with the child –Where it is found the father does not pose an unacceptable risk of harm to the child – Where parties are to exercise equal shared parental responsibility – Where the parties’ residences do not make it reasonably practicable for the child to spend equal time with each party – Where it is in the child’s best interests to live with the mother and spend significant and substantial time with the father.

  • Linsdell & Linsdell [2018] FamCA 596

    09 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Best interests of the children – Where the father has disengaged with the proceedings – where the father has been violent towards the child – where the father treats one child differently to the others – where there are concerns in regards to excessive discipline – where the father has limited insight into appropriate behaviour when in the presence of his children – where it is in the best interests of the children to spend no time with the father.

  • Leggara & Oncins [2018] FamCA 616

    13 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – SERVICE – substituted service – where service effected via delivery of documents to respondent’s email address – where respondent taken as having been served - where respondent mother has remained outside Australia in breach of orders – where child has resided in Australia for his whole life up until orders allowed the Mother to temporarily remove him.

  • Jillet & Murdoch (No. 2) [2018] FamCA 604

    10 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Where the Independent Children’s Lawyer seeks that the parties pay the ICL’s costs of the proceedings – Where the mother and father oppose paying costs – Where both parties have the financial capacity to contribute to the ICL’s costs – Where neither party was wholly successful in the proceedings – Where costs of an interim hearing were reserved to final trial – Where the mother was wholly unsuccessful in that interim hearing – Where it is appropriate that the mother pay the ICL’s costs of an incidental to that interim hearing – Where otherwise it is appropriate that the parties both contribute to the ICL’s costs of the proceedings – Orders made.

  • Hitchens & Hitchens [2018] FamCA 608

    06 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Interim – With whom a child spends time – Best interests of a child – Where the mother contends that the father poses an unacceptable risk of harm to the children by reason of family violence or exposure to family violence – Where the allegations are very serious but untested – Where a conservative approach is appropriate – Where the children shall spend time with the father as sought by him save that his time shall be supervised by the paternal grandmother.

  • Ellison & Mallick and Anor [2018] FamCA 603

    08 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Interim parenting – Where both parents present an unacceptable risk of harm to the children –Where there is an unacceptable likelihood that the father will sexually abuse the children – Sole parental responsibility given to the Minister – Both parents are restrained from permitting any of the children from living with them or contacting them – Where the father has extensive history of juvenile sexual offending – where the mother has not acted protectively of the children.

  • Dobbin & Burns [2018] FamCA 599

    26 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Application by father seeking parenting orders that child live with him – Orders that child live with the father – Orders that child spend time with the mother as agreed between the parents – Orders that child communicate with the mother – Orders that parents have equal shared parental responsibility for the child.

  • Dittersdorf & Gunst [2018] FamCA 607

    10 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child spends time – Where the mother wishes to travel overseas for an short holiday with the child to celebrate her parents’ wedding anniversary – Where the mother wishes to relocate with the child overseas to that same country on a final basis – Where the child has already been subject to an order requiring her return to Australia from that country pursuant to the Hague Convention – Where the Court determines that the travel is more for the benefit of the mother and her parents than the child – Where the mother’s application for travel is dismissed.

  • Commonwealth Central Authority & North [2018] FamCA 614

    06 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Admissibility – application for the admission of late filed affidavit – operation of the Family Law (Child Abduction Convention) Regulations 1986 (Cth) – where material admissible but not admitted – where question of procedural fairness raised – where model litigant concedes failure to comply with directions – failure to provide adequate notice – inability to test or contradict material – where admission of material would be procedurally unfair – application refused.

  • Ciglaric & Ciglaric [2018] FamCA 602

    15 Jun 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Application by husband seeking leave to review a property order made by consent in 1996 and if successful that there be a division property whereas the husband receive 40 per cent and the wife receive 60 per cent – Whether Court has jurisdiction to hear such an application – Whether the Court should make an order that husband be declared a vexatious litigant after consideration of husband’s submissions – Husband’s application dismissed as being a frivolous or vexatious proceeding.

  • Cheetham & Cheetham (No. 2) [2018] FamCA 601

    15 Jun 2018

    FAMILY LAW –PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – STAY – Application by the wife for a stay of operation of the final property orders pending her appeal – Where a sale of the former matrimonial home was ordered with the proceeds of sale to be divided between the parties in a defined ratio – Where the wife wishes to retain the former matrimonial home – Where the wife submits that without a stay order, her appeal could be rendered nugatory – Where the husband opposes the application - Where the husband submits that he will be disadvantaged by the delay in receiving funds awarded to him in the substantive judgment – Where a cautious approach is taken in assessing the prospects of the appeal being successful – Where the appropriate course is to order the stay on the condition of a payment to the husband from resources acknowledged as available.

  • Carson & Hillman [2018] FamCA 605

    10 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Stay – Where the wife seeks a stay of orders pending appeal against substantive orders – Where the wife has filed a Notice of Appeal – Where the superannuation has already been split but the superannuation trustee has no objection to a stay of the superannuation split pending appeal as long as certain conditions are met – Where appeal would be rendered nugatory if stay not granted – Where the balance of convenience favours the granting of the stay.

  • Burt & Merrill (No 2) [2018] FamCA 606

    10 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COURTS AND JUDGES – Disqualification Application – Actual bias – Apprehended bias – “fair-minded lay observer” – Objective test – Whether the applicant was prejudiced in the presentation of their case – Actual or apprehended bias not established – Application dismissed.

  • B Pty Ltd and Ors & Majid and Anor [2018] FamCA 612

    13 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Application for summary dismissal – what is meant by “the other party has no legal capacity to apply for the orders sought” – test for summary dismissal of application under s79A(1)(a) – application dismissed

  • Boardman & Boardman [2018] FamCA 598

    17 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Application by wife for an adjustment of property interests – Where consideration is given to the parties contributions – Where consideration is given to the s 75(2) factors – Orders made for the wife to receive 65 per cent of the property and the husband to receive 35 per cent of the property in circumstance where the Court is satisfied that it is just and equitable to do so.

  • Xennon & Frangoulis [2018] FamCA 566

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child spends time – Orders – Contravention – Where the father’s time spent with the children is ordered to be subject to supervision – Where the father admits a contravention of those orders – Classification of contravention – Contravention without reasonable excuse – whether the contravention is a less serious contravention or a more serious contravention – Power to require a person to enter into a bond.

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child spends time – Orders – Variation – Whether the orders permitting the father to spend supervised time with the children should be suspended pending trial – Where the father has partially but not fully complied with previous orders to attend on a therapist or to obtain a report regarding those attendances – Where the family consultant considers that the children should continue to see the father.


  • Vossen & Vossen [2018] FamCA 564

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Application by wife seeking a review of registrar’s decision and a stay of orders allowing husband to spend unsupervised time with the children – Interim Orders that children spend supervised time with the father – Interim Orders that the father communicate with the children – Interim mutual injunctive orders.

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Application by wife seeking a partial property order – Interim property orders made whereby husband and wife each receive an equal sum by way of a partial property settlement.


  • Taveray & Wedgewood and Anor (No 2) [2018] FamCA 562

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY SETTLEMENT – Just and equitable – Where the parties were in a relationship for 11 years – Where the parties are unable to agree about what, if any, property settlement order should be made – Where the husband made the overwhelming financial contributions to the parties’ marriage – Where each of the parties were meticulous in paying their share of expenses during their relationship and both contributed in the role as homemaker– Where the wife is in poor health and has no income other than the spousal maintenance provided by the husband – Where the husband is in good health and has the capacity for ongoing full time employment – Where it is just and equitable to make an order – Where the husband shall receive 75% of the property pool.

    FAMILY LAW – SPOUSAL MAINTENANCE – Lump sum – Where the wife seeks an order for a lump sum payment of spousal maintenance – Where the wife has a serious medical condition – Where wife may be unable to work in the future – Where the wife, by way of a property order, is to receive a cash sum payment – Where the wife is unable to adequately support herself at this time – Where the husband has the financial capacity to pay spousal maintenance to the wife on a weekly basis until 14 March 2021


  • Smollett & Department of Family and Community Services [2018] FamCA 580

    18 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Application for a stay of the operation of orders made for the return of a child to New Zealand – Consideration of the principles of stay applications as summarised in Aldridge & Keaton [2009] FamCAFC 106 – Where the mother is pregnant and it will become impracticable for her to travel to New Zealand – Where an order has been made several times for the child to return to New Zealand – Where there is no challenge to the original judgment – Where the mother wants to put evidence of a midwife before the Court however this evidence is not in proper form – Where the mother’s application is dismissed.

  • Sayid & Alam [2018] FamCA 570

    12 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – ORDERS – Application for Stay of an order made in enforcement proceedings – Application dismissed.

  • Paskin & Laurence [2018] FamCA 554

    25 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Where there is one child aged six years – Where the father seeks an increase in his time with the child including overnight time – Where orders were previously made for overnight time to commence on a specified date – Where the mother does not dispute these orders but requests a more gradual approach to increasing overnight time – Where the father has been diagnosed with Asperger’s Disorder and has perpetrated family violence in the past – Where the father is receiving ongoing treatment and has shown insight into his condition – Where the expert considers that the father’s proposals for time will generally best meet the child’s needs – Where there are benefits to each of the parents having clear weekend time with the child – Where it is ordered for the child to spend alternate weekends and one night during the intervening week with the father.

    FAMILY LAW – PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITY – Where the father and the Independent Children’s Lawyer seek an order for equal shared parental responsibility and the mother seeks sole parental responsibility – Where the presumption for equal shared parental responsibility does not apply as the father has been responsible for family violence – Where the parents do not have a good relationship and their communication is poor – Where it would be in the child’s best interest for the father to have input into decisions – Where an order is made for the mother to have sole parental responsibility with orders for consultation with the father.

    FAMILY LAW – RELOCATION – Where the mother seeks an order that she be able to relocate with the child for one period of up to three years – Where the father opposes this application – Where the expert recommends that the relocation should not take place for at least two years so that the child and the father can develop their relationship – Where the Court will not presume to speculate now about the circumstances of this family in late 2019 and beyond – Where no order allowing relocation is made.

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Where the parties were married for approximately 10 years – Where the main assets of the relationship are moneys in a joint account, superannuation and the father’s share options in a US company – Where neither party sought for their paid legal fees to be added-back – Where the wife brought substantial funds into the marriage and the husband’s share options have increased post separation – Where contributions are assessed as 55 per cent by the father and 45 per cent by the mother – Where the mother has the primary care of the child – Where an adjustment of 7.5 per cent is appropriate in favour of the mother.

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Share options – Where the father has share options in his employer, a US company – Where not all options have vested – Where the fees and tax implications of exercising these options are unknown – Where the father cannot exercise the options if his employment is terminated – Where the options are to be considered in specie – Where orders are made for the vested shares to be exercised when they are in the money and for 50 per cent of the value obtained from these shares  to be provided to the wife


  • Orontes & Somoza [2018] FamCA 573

    24 May 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child lives – With whom a child spends time – All previous parenting orders be suspended – Interim Orders that child live with the mother – Interim Orders that the parents have joint parental responsibility for the child – Interim Order that father spends supervised time with the child.

  • Mitford & Cilea (No. 2) [2018] FamCA 587

    03 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Where husband seeks an order for indemnity costs against the wife –Where the wife did not appear at the hearing – Where wife discontinued her claim for an enforcement warrant –  Where wife rejected prior offers – Where wife not wholly unsuccessful – Where wife to pay husband’s costs on a party/party basis - Costs certificate granted.

  • Milliford & Milliford [2018] FamCA 581

    01 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – JURISDICTION – De Facto Relationship – Where the applicant claims that she and the respondent were in a de facto relationship – Where the parties were previously married and divorced –Where there is insufficient evidence to establish that the applicant and respondent were in a de facto relationship.

  • Merhi & Merhi and Ors [2018] FamCA 582

    13 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Where a single expert document examiner was previously appointed by Court order – Where the wife has provided sample documents to the expert – Where the Court is satisfied that there is no harm done in the expert having recourse to all of those more recently provided samples – Where leave is granted for the wife to provide additional specified documents to the expert.

  • Meese & Meese [2018] FamCA 588

    02 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – PARENTING – Release of expert report – application for three week suspension of time between the children and the father – findings of risk on an interim basis – where identified emotional and psychological vulnerabilities exacerbated by identified risk factors.

  • Machida & Machida [2018] FamCA 585

    23 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Protection of the assets of the marriage

  • Jamieson & Jamieson [2018] FamCA 576

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Unacceptable risk – Where mother seeks for the children to live with her and neither spend time nor communicate with father unless they wish to do so – Where father seeks children live with mother and that he be permitted to send correspondence to the children and if successful, he have liberty to apply – Where father’s relationship with the children is severely fractured – Where the father poses an unacceptable risk of emotional harm to the children – Where the father has been domestically violent towards the mother and children – Where children’s wishes given weight – Where children are unlikely to obtain any benefit from being reintroduced to the father – Where the need to protect the children from harm outweighs any benefit of having a relationship with the father – Where the father is prohibited from spending time and communicating with the children.

  • Hertwig & Hertwig [2018] FamCA 591

    07 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY SETTLEMENT – Application to commence property settlement proceedings out of time pursuant to s 44(3) of the Act – where the Applicant Husband has discharged the onus of establishing he would suffer hardship if leave were not granted – where affording the Applicant Husband leave to commence proceedings is the manner by which the Court can best be enabled to do justice between the parties – where the Application is granted provided that such application is filed within 28 days of the order.

  • Filmore & Filmore [2018] FamCA 575

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – INTERNATIONAL RELOCATION – Where mother seeks to relocate with the children from Australia to the United Kingdom – Where father opposes relocation and seeks an equal shared care arrangement – Where the mother’s parenting capacity would not materially improve if mother permitted to relocate – Where it is not reasonably practicable for father to relocate to or spend time in the United Kingdom with the children – Where relocation would impair meaningful relationship between children and father – No relocation order made – Parties to have equal shared parental responsibility – Where equal time is not in children’s best interests – Where orders are made for children to live with mother and spend significant and substantial time with father.

  • Drew and Anor & Bulla [2018] FamCA 584

    20 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – ADOPTION – Leave to make an application pursuant to the Adoption Act 2009 (Qld).

  • Colgan & Colgan [2018] FamCA 586

    02 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Parental Responsibility – Where the mother seeks sole parental responsibility and the father seeks equal shared parental responsibility – Where the presumption of equal shared parental responsibility does not apply as there has been family violence – Where the parties have a very poor relationship and a long history of conflictual behaviour – Where the court expert does not recommend equal shared parental responsibility – Where the children would benefit from input from their father in decision making – Where an order is made for the mother to have sole parental responsibility but that she consult with the father.

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Where the father seeks the children spend four nights per fortnight in his care and the mother seeks the children spend three nights per fortnight with the father – Where the Court is satisfied that there has been family violence perpetrated by the father in the past – Where the children have spent time regularly with their father and the reports are positive – Where the court expert recommends the orders proposed by the father – Orders made that the children spend four nights per fortnight in the father’s care.

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Where there was a relationship of seven years – Where the principal asset is a controlled monies account held by the husband’s solicitors as per previous Court orders – Where the wife made a greater initial contribution and has had the primary care of the children since separation – Where during the relationship the husband was the primary earner and the wife was primary carer of the children – Where contributions are assessed at 53 per cent to the wife and 47 per cent to the husband – Where the wife has the primary care of the children and the husband has a slightly greater earning capacity – Where an adjustment of 10 per cent is made in favour of the wife.


  • Choat & Grendel [2018] FamCA 579

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Objection to the inspection of material produced under subpoena – Where the mother asserts that certain material in her clinical psychologist records is confidential and attracts public interest immunity – Where the mother’s relationship with her psychologist does not attract public interest immunity – Where the mother asserts that certain material in her clinical psychologist’s records is not relevant to any issue to be determined in the parenting proceedings – Where that objection is upheld.

  • Carpani & Arjuna (No 2) [2018] FamCA 572

    31 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Undefended – Where the husband returned to India and did not take part in the proceedings – Where interim orders are made for the wife to receive the funds remaining in the husband’s Australian accounts and his superannuation.

  • Bryson & Vergonis [2018] FamCA 574

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Parenting Orders – Relocation – Where father seeks mother to relocate back to Queensland with child – Where father seeks to spend each alternate weekend with child progressing to an equal care arrangement – Where mother primarily seeks that father’s time with child is supervised at a contact centre indefinitely – Mother alternatively seeks time be supervised between child and father and progresses to unsupervised day contact on an interim basis – Where mother alleges the father poses an unacceptable risk of harm to the child – Where the father is not found to pose an unacceptable risk of harm to the child – Where the mother’s parenting capacity would not so diminish if child spent time with father – Where it may be in the child’s best interests for the mother to relocate back to Queensland to spend significant and substantial time with the father – Where the court proposes to give the parties an opportunity to make further submissions as to the extent, if relocation is ordered, of the radius in which the mother might be required to relocate to from the father’s residence

  • Yalsburg & Yalsburg [2018] FamCA 174

    23 Mar 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – contested residence – allegations of sexual abuse – assessment of risk – where there is no finding of unacceptable risk in respect of either parent – orders made in the best interests of the child on an interim basis

  • Yalpat & Yalpat [2018] FamCA 543

    25 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – Application to place child on Airport Watch List – consideration of risk factors going to likelihood of child’s removal – where sufficient possible risk exists – where child’s removal from Australia would constitute severe disruption.

  • Wibley & Wibley [2018] FamCA 565

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY SETTLEMENT – Consent orders – Whether orders just and equitable – where one party had significant superannuation interests – where non-financial contributions made to the welfare of the family 

  • Ulbek & Ulbek [2018] FamCA 563

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – RECOVERY ORDER – Where the child suffers from autism spectrum disorder – Where the child has been retained by the father despite interim orders for the child to live with the mother – Where the child is at risk of absconding – Where orders are made for the father to return the child to the mother.

  • Suffolk & Mozza [2018] FamCA 536

    20 Jun 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Child related proceedings – Where the mother seeks an orders for sole parental responsibility and for the children to spend no time with the father – Where the father seeks orders for equal shared parental responsibility and reintroduction to the children with the aid of a therapist – Where there are allegations of physical violence, intimidating behaviour and verbal abuse of the children by the father – Where interim orders for supervised time were not implemented by the mother or father – Where the children have not seen the father since June 2014 and a situation of ‘realistic estrangement’ exists between the father and the children – Where the father has been excluded from participation in any decisions concerning the children – Where the children have expressed the view that they are strongly opposed to contact or communication with the father – Where forced reintroduction to the father might jeopardise future prospects of reconnection – Court finds the presumption of equal shared parental responsibility is rebutted – Orders made for the mother to have sole parental responsibility – Orders made for the children to attend therapy – Orders made allowing the father to send letter to the children’s therapist for them once every twelve months – No orders made for the children to spend time with the father.

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Relocation – Where the mother seeks an order for relocation – Where the mother provided no evidence in relation to order sought for relocation – No order made.


  • Purtle & Purtle and Anor [2018] FamCA 561

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Discovery – Further and better discovery – Where the second respondent asserts there are no further documents that are relevant to the proceedings – Where the applicant still seeks an order for further and better discovery – Family Law Rules 2004 (Cth) Part 13.2.

  • Longu & Njamba [2018] FamCA 568

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – NULLITY – Application for declaration – Where applicant still married at time of subject marriage – Marriage declared a nullity.

  • Livesy & Volte [2018] FamCA 544

    25 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN - Application by the father for interim change of residence for the child to live with him – Where final parenting orders were made in December 2016 by consent – Where prior to final orders the mother had made allegations of possible sexual abuse of the child by the father which did not meet the statutory reporting threshold of risk of serious harm – Where the father claims there has been a significant and substantial change in circumstances since those final orders were made – Where the Respondent mother has made numerous complaints in the last six months to New South Wales Police and the Department of Family and Community Services alleging sexual abuse by the father on the child – Where the child has been extensively questioned and interviewed without substantiation – Where the child has a strong relationship with his father – Where the child has lived with his mother since the parties separated – Where the mother  has been compliant with orders - Ordered the mother be restrained from interviewing and questioning the child or permitting third parties to do so about allegations of sexual abuse of him – Ordered the mother be restrained from unilaterally taking the child to see a psychologist – Ordered the appointment of an Independent Children’s Lawyer.

  • Lao & Yeng [2018] FamCA 560

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – JURISDICTION – Operation of the Child Protection Convention in circumstances where the child is resident in China – Where s 111CD is found to limit the jurisdiction of the court otherwise contained in s 69E of the Family Law Act – Where the court does not have jurisdiction to hear the parenting proceedings.

  • Langley & Tarelli [2018] FamCA 545

    27 Jun 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Application to reopen proceedings – Where the mother seeks to adduce further evidence relating exclusively to parenting following trial where judgment is reserved – Where the father and the Department of Family and Community Services oppose the application – Where the mother is unable to meet the emotional needs of the child – Where the evidence is not likely to impact the result of the parenting proceedings – Where it is not in the best interests of the child to delay the proceedings further – Application dismissed.

  • Lake & Lake [2018] FamCA 547

    14 Jun 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – RISK OF HARM – Where there is a dispute between the mother and father as to the time the children will spend with the father – Where the children are aged eight and twelve – Where both children suffer from mental health disorders – Where the father suffers from a mental health disorder and has a history of substance abuse – Where the parties agree that the father’s time with the children should remain supervised for a period of time – Orders made for the children to spend time with the father in a graduating arrangement commencing with daytime fortnightly time and ending in unsupervised weekends and block periods during school holidays – Where the father’s time with the children is contingent on drug testing results to be conducted over a number of years – Where the mother is able to exercise some discretion as to the extension of the father’s time with the children – Where the father is ordered to attend therapy.

  • Knill & Beckett (No. 2) [2018] FamCA 569

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Parenting – whether additional overnight time is appropriate – nature of the relationship between the parties – whether additional time may negatively impact parenting capacity – where gradual change to contact arrangements.

  • Kerr & Kennett (No. 2) [2018] FamCA 559

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child spends time – Best interests of a child – Where the mother seeks to suspend the children’s time with their father on an unsupervised basis under the current orders and also seeks for the father to attend upon a forensic psychiatrist – Where it is not in the best interests of the children to completely suspend the children’s time with their father – Where the father’s time with the children is to remain subject to certain conditions – Where the father is not required to attend upon a psychiatrist for anger management treatment at this time.

    FAMILY LAW – CHILD SUPPORT – Application for departure – Where the mother’s application for an order departing from child support assessments for periods going back beyond eighteen months be dismissed – Where there was insufficient evidence for the Court to use its power to grant leave for the Child Support Registrar to amend administrative assessments and determine a departure application in respect of historic child support periods.


  • Keles & Keles [2018] FamCA 571

    20 Apr 2018

    FAMILY LAW – ORDERS – Contravention Application – where children retained overnight – whether reasonable excuse made out – “reasonable” excuse an objective standard – whether belief is held on objectively reasonable grounds - whether compensatory time should be ordered – whether costs order should be made.

  • Hampstead & McDougall [2018] FamCA 553

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Undefended Hearing – Where mother seeks sole parental responsibility, for children to live with her and spend no time with father until the conclusion of his criminal proceedings – Where father is presently in custody awaiting a criminal trial – Where the father poses a risk of emotional harm to the children – Where the children may benefit from a meaningful relationship with the father but that will depend upon the outcome of his criminal trial – Where children’s wishes given weight –  Where the children are not to spend time with the father while he is incarcerated – Where the children may only spend time with the father if they express a wish to do so and on the condition that it is spent in a group of three or more of the children with the father.

  • Guest & Boehm [2018] FamCA 556

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Section 117(2A) factors – de facto wife seeks an order that the de facto husband pay her costs on an indemnity basis – where the husband has consistently failed to provide disclosure – where the husband has failed to facilitate the valuation of assets - where the circumstances justify a departure from the general rule that each party bear their own costs – where indemnity costs ordered.

  • Gomez & Gallagher [2018] FamCA 552

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Indemnity Costs – Where the father was wholly unsuccessful in his application for parenting orders – Where the father initiated proceedings on a false factual basis – Where the father’s conduct in relation to the proceedings justify an order for indemnity costs – Indemnity costs ordered against the father.

  • Genim & Genim [2018] FamCA 558

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – With whom a child lives – With whom a child spends time – Where the parties are in conflict – Where the children have been exposed to conflict between the parties – Where the competing proposals of the parties support the children having a meaningful relationship with each of the parents. 

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Interim distribution of property – Where the wife seeks an interim property settlement – The court should take a cautious approach to interim distribution of property.


  • Farnham & DeLuca [2018] FamCA 548

    22 Jun 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – FAMILY VIOLENCE – UNACCEPTABLE RISK – Where there exists a high level of conflict between the parents – Where there are allegations of family violence made by each parent against the other – Where the mother seeks that the father spend only supervised time with the children – Consideration of whether the father engaged in coercive and controlling behaviour during the cohabitation –Definition of “unacceptable risk” – Consideration of whether such behaviour as found by the Court poses an unacceptable risk to the children such that they should only spend recognition time with the father – Orders made for the father to spend unsupervised time with the children in a graduating arrangement culminating in alternate weekends and half of school holidays – Orders made in relation to communication, changeovers, airport watchlist and provision of contact details to the other parent.

  • Carbonne & Carbonne [2018] FamCA 550

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Alteration of property interests – Where matter proceeded on an undefended basis – Where mother has sole care of the children – Where father does not financially contribute to children – Where the main asset is the parties’ self-managed superannuation fund – Just and equitable division – Where a splitting order is made in favour of the wife.

  • Caldbeck & Ladrone and Ors [2018] FamCA 528

    20 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Interim Proceedings – Where the wife removed $1,000,000 from the husband’s bank account and transferred the funds to bank accounts in China in her name and in the name of her parents – Where an order was made previously restraining the wife from departing from the Commonwealth of Australia – Where proceedings are currently on foot in China between the wife and her parents in relation to the money transferred and purported debts owed to the wife’s parents – Where the wife seeks permission to travel to China to defend herself in Court proceedings – Where there is potential prejudice arising if the wife is permitted to travel to China in that the financial proceedings may be frustrated and injustice will be done to the husband – Where the wife’s failure to appear in the Chinese proceedings could also cause prejudice to her and ultimately the husband if the funds are not recovered – Where the competing prejudices favour the refusal of the wife’s application provided the husband gives an undertaking to intervene if a finding is made in the Chinese proceedings adverse to the wife and report to the wife the outcome of proceedings – Where the application is dismissed.

  • Burns & Shedden [2018] FamCA 557

    27 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY SETTLEMENT – Just and equitable – Property acquired before the marriage – Entitlement to claim total permanent disability payment acquired before the date of the marriage – Contribution – Stanford v Stanford (2012) 247 CLR 108 – Short marriage – Where there has been an informal settlement of property between the parties – Where it is not just and equitable to alter the parties interests in property.

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Non-appearance of a party – Where the husband did not comply with trial directions – Where the husband had notice of the proceedings – Oral application by the wife to proceed on an undefended basis in the absence of the husband.


  • Bolt & Waldo [2018] FamCA 546

    03 Aug 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Application for costs on an indemnity basis arising from trial of de-facto financial dispute – Where the Respondent was wholly unsuccessful in that proceeding – Where the Applicant seeks an order for the Respondent to pay her costs on an indemnity basis, as per costs agreement, since the commencement of proceedings - Where the Respondent opposes any costs order being made – Where the Respondent has substantial wealth and is in a position to meet a costs order – Where the Applicant is entitled to a costs order – Where the indemnity basis is not applied – Ordered the Respondent pay the costs of the Applicant as agreed and in default of agreement, as assessed, to be paid within 42 days of agreement or assessment.

  • Bitar & Bitar [2018] FamCA 567

    30 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – NULLITY – Application for declaration – foreign marriage – Where consideration of whether the marriage recognised as valid under Australian Law – Where applicant still married at time of subject marriage – Marriage declared a nullity.

  • Birchall & Ellingford [2018] FamCA 539

    18 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Whether an order for equal share parental responsibility should be made – Allegations of family violence – Father retained children without the knowledge or consent of the mother – Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) for the protection of the mother issued on a “without admissions” basis –  Father convicted of harassing the maternal grandparents – Father’s mental health – When and under what conditions the children should travel from Sydney to Tasmania to spend time with the father – Which party should bear the cost of the children’s travel to spend time with the father – Orders made for the father to spend time with the children in Sydney progressing to the children travelling to Tasmania.


  • Arthurman & Arthurman [2018] FamCA 551

    25 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PROPERTY – Summary dismissal – Husband seeks that wife’s initiating application for the implementation of orders be summarily dismissed – Where husband claims that the wife’s application is doomed to fail – Where wife seeks various orders that implement final property orders made in 2008 between the parties – Where the parties did not execute the 2008 orders until five years later – Where land tax liabilities have accrued as a result – Where the wife’s application is not wholly doomed to fail – Application dismissed.

  • Adanti & Coli [2018] FamCA 555

    24 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Where the husband refuses to provide full and frank disclosure of his personal and business bank statements – where the wife asserts she is unable to provide bank statements from Country D due to fear of incarceration – where the husband refuses the production of his bank statements due to the wife’s inability to produce hers – where the husband has also failed to provide full and frank disclosure regarding the proceeds of sale from a business – where the wife seeks that the husband also be restrained from dealing with property in Country D – orders made for full and frank disclosure to be provided and restraining the husband from dealing with the Country D property.

  • Adamson & Adamson [2018] FamCA 523

    19 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – CHILDREN – Best interests – With whom the children live – With whom the children spend time – Presumption of equal shared parental responsibility – Meaningful relationship – Unacceptable risk – Where the mother has unilaterally relocated the children – Where the mother alleges that the father has mental health issues – Where the mother alleges that the father has a gambling addiction – Where the mother says she does not have adequate support.

  • Abney & Welch [2018] FamCA 549

    02 Jul 2018

    FAMILY LAW – COSTS – Where the husband filed an application for costs to be paid by the wife following a trial by way of rehearing after a successful appeal – Where the application is opposed by the wife – Neither party was wholly unsuccessful – Where an offer was made by the husband which was better than the ultimate order made by the Court – Where the wife did not have adequate knowledge to give the offer proper consideration in the time specified – Where it was reasonable for the husband to raise the issue – No order as to costs