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Are primary residence parents as free to move as custodial parents were?

Young, L. (1996) Are primary residence parents as free to move as custodial parents were? Australian Family Lawyer, 11 (3). pp. 31-39.


In its major overhaul of Part VII of the Family Law Act 1975 ("the FLA"), the Family Law Reform Act 1995 ("the Amending Act"), which came into effect on 11 June 1996, inserted an objects section, s60B, where there was none before. Sub-section 60B(2)(b) of the Amending Act states that one of the principles underlying the objects set out in sub-section (I) is that "children have a right of contact, on a regular basis, with both their parents and with other people significant to their care, welfare and development". Another principle underlying the objects is that "children have the right to know and be cared for by both of their parents, regardless of whether their parents are married" or not: s60B(2)(a). Further, s68F(2)(d) requires that, in ascertaining what is in a child's best interests, the court must have regard to "the practical difficulty and expense of a child having contact with a parent and whether that difficulty or expense will substantially affect the child's right to maintain personal relations and direct contact with both parents on a regular basis". Before the Amending Act came into effect, one would have said that custodial parents, as they were then known, l did not have undue limitations placed on their mobility. This article briefly reviews the freedom of custodial parents to move before the Amending Act came into force and considers what impact, if any, these new provisions, and in particular s60B(2)(b), might have on that freedom.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Law
Publisher: Law Council of Australia
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