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Can children be relocated without the consent of the other parent?

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What can you do if your ex-partner unilaterally removes your children from a school and moves to a country town when you separate?

The Federal Magistrates Court of Australia has recently ordered in the case of Meacham and Meacham that the children were to be re-enrolled in their old school until finalisation of proceedings.

Orders were made by this court to ensure that a relationship with both parents, their friends, their step sibling and their father’s new partner.

Significant weight was given to the children’s wishes in this case, but the court found their views not binding.  The court determined that the children’s views had been overbourne by their relationship with their mother.

The Court determined that as their was no complaint in relation to the old school, the closeness to school friends and given the importance of these relationships to adolescents, a return to the old school was in the children’s best interests.  Not only were the parents ordered to ensure re-enrolment at the old school but they were ordered to ensure continued attendance.

For further advice on relocating children after separation or any other family law or defacto matters, please contact one of our experienced Family Law lawyers.

Author: Elisa Garzarella

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