How Family Law Defines A Meaningful Relationship Between Children And Both Their Divorced Parents

When family lawyers are dealing with legal matters that involve children, there is much within family law that they must refer to. A child being adopted, visitation rights for a divorcing parent, and taking a child from their abusive parents for their protection are but three possible reasons why a family lawyer might be involved, either to represent parents or in some matters, the child.

Some of these cases come up rarely and others are what you might consider normal for a family lawyer and a family law matter they possibly deal with each week. One of the more common ones where a family lawyer will most definitely be advising clients is during a divorce, and where that client has children, there will be parenting arrangements to resolve.

As current family law stands, there is a strong emphasis on the best interests of the children being served when any divorce order is settled. One specific element of that, and a term you will find within the Family Law Act, is “meaningful relationship”. This is where family law tries to balance the best interests of the child by promoting having a meaningful relationship with both parents, whilst at the same time protecting the child from psychological or physical harm.

Defining A Meaningful Relationship

Although the 1975 Family Law Act is the basis for how divorces and child arrangements are dealt with legally, the concept of parents sharing equal responsibility for their children, and that of the child having a meaningful relationship with both parents, was first introduced by an amendment made to the Act in 2006. Given that meaningful relationships can be considered subjectively rather than objectively, it means that case law has often helped define what it is.

Terms such as “valuable”, “important”, “of consequence” and “significant” have all been used in cases to further define what a meaningful relationship is, but it still leaves some misunderstandings. Further explanations of how a meaningful relationship can be recognised and defined are set out below.


How To Ensure Your Overseas Marriage Is Recognised In Australia

How To Ensure Your Overseas Marriage Is Recognised In Australia

The idea of getting married in some far-away land with an idyllic setting and stunning scenery all around will appeal to many couples who are soon to become wed. However, unfortunately, there have been others who have jetted off before you, and, because they have not fully understood all the legal parameters in Australia that apply to weddings overseas, they have found themselves in what some might describe as a legal hole.

Our first piece of advice, as it is for anything relating to family law and marriage which you are unsure of, is to speak to a family lawyer. It might be that your query is answered in minutes over the phone, and all is good. In other circumstances when there could be an issue, their help and advice could prevent you from some unwanted situations, including discovering that your marriage is not recognised under family law as it stands in Australia.

First, we need to alert you to the fact that the legislation concerning marriages that occur internationally is the 1961 Marriage Act. It stipulates two basic requirements which must be met for a marriage to be recognised in Australia if it took place in another country.


How Visitation Rights Are Determined By The Court

How Visitation Rights Are Determined By The Court

If there are children born within a marriage and their parents subsequently divorce, one of the most important aspects of that divorce that those parent’s need family lawyers to help them with, is visitation rights.

In many cases, these are negotiated amicably, and both the parents, and more importantly, the children, do not need to experience the angst and the stress of a protracted disagreement, and court appearances.

Sadly, in those cases where the parents cannot agree, it can be that one parent is refusing to allow the other to see their children. On the other side of the coin, the parent who responsible for spousal and child support may refuse to pay any, unless they get the visitation rights that they want, rather than what is appropriate.

Whatever the specifics of a failure to agree on visitation rights which both parents are happy with, the likelihood is that the matter will need to be decided by the court. Here, it will be for a judge to listen to both sides and then determine what visitation will take place.


Are Employment Contracts Mandatory in Australia?

Are Employment Contracts Mandatory in Australia

In most countries across the world, at least some form of employment contract is a legal obligation. More advanced contracts can be developed with the aid of employment lawyers, while some are as simple a generic one-page document outlining basic pay rates and terms of employment.

One of the most common questions we get asked is whether or not employment contracts are mandatory in Australia. And actually, the short answer is that no, they aren’t. Note, though, that it’s generally a very good idea to sign a contract before you commence working to ensure you’re protected from potential issues in the future.

In the rest of this article, we’re going to have a quick look at employment contracts in Australia, when you should use one, and what different types there are.

Why Should I Have an Employment Contract?

If you don’t have to have a contract, then why bother? I mean, in the end, drafting a contract and then later contract negotiations takes time and can cost a significant amount of money – particularly if you do so with the aid of a lawyer.

However, there are numerous reasons why you should always ensure an employment contract is in place before work commences. As an employer, a contract:


Documents You’ll Need in Divorce – A Good List To Start With

Divorce Documents

As you head towards a divorce it’s important to be prepared.  This involves both emotional preparation for the long road ahead and finding a talented family lawyer that suits your personality.

Another important thing to gather and prepare are all the relevant documents you will need.  Having an incomplete list may leave your legal advisor in the dark when it comes to important matters such as property settlement or child support.  Here is what I call a “starter list” of the minimum documents you should collect before talking to an attorney or filing yourself.

Prenuptial agreements:  These are legal contracts you may have signed before the marriage.  They can governs everything from property division, spousal support after the marriage or child custody matters.

Pension statements:  You should collect these retirement documents for both yourself AND your spouse.  Generally, spouses can claim a portion of their partners retirement income if funds were used during the marriage to contribute to these types of plans.

Proof of current income:  This includes all W2s, 1099s, and other documents listed below such as bank statements and tax returns.  Basically, if you and your tax lawyers list is on your taxes as “income” then collect the documents that support those numbers, including home businesses.

Proof of spouse’s current income:  This includes W2s, 1099s, income from side businesses, repayments of debts (including interests), gifts, etc.  Examine the last few years of tax returns to give you an idea of what types of income are reported and then find the documents that support those claims.

Certificates of deposit:  A certificate of deposit is an instrument typically sold by a bank which represents a deposit of cash that cannot be withdrawn (without penalty) until a certain date.  For this promise the bank pays a higher interest rate.


Ways in which a Business Lawyer can help you Start and Run a Business

Hiring a Lawyer

Many business entrepreneurs entertain the notion that hiring a lawyer is an expensive and unnecessary thing to do when there are other aspects to look into. However, the truth according to Rowe Bristol is that commercial lawyers can help prevent expensive and time-consuming mistakes that can threaten the stability and success of your business. Smart business entrepreneurs find a lawyer that they can rely on and make them a part of their business team from the start. Having a professionally trained lawyer on your side to tackle legal issues can prevent them from snowballing into bigger troubles down the line.

A trusted business lawyer can provide valuable guidance and assistance in several different ways:

  • Advising you on the type of structure that is most suitable for your requirement
  • Providing guidance on the permits, licenses etc that you need to take in order to legally set up a business in Australia
  • Preparing and creating standard agreements and contracts as well as specialised ones as and when the need arises
  • Advice on preparing sale or purchase agreements
  • Guidance regarding tax laws, employment policies and procedures

Your lawyer will also help review and negotiate contracts with third parties including property leases and loan documents. They can also provide valuable assistance in preparing non-disclosure agreements and work for hire contracts. Commercial lawyers from Lawyers Perth, can also help formulate agreements to protect confidential company information and advise you regarding compliance issues. If you wish to protect your business name, logo, packaging and labelling etc under trademark protection, your lawyer will be happy to prepare a correct and complete trademark protection application to the relevant authorities.


Legal Aspects of Nullity Under Australian law

Nullity Under Australian law

Apart from divorce, nullity constitutes another way of bringing marriage to an end. However, family lawyers will advise you that in contrast to divorce as the ending of a valid marriage, a declaration of nullity under Australian law implies that there was no legal marriage between the parties, notwithstanding the fact that parties might have held a marriage ceremony.

As a matter of Australian law, it is a prerogative of the Family Court of Australia to declare a marriage invalid. In making decision on the legal validity of a marriage, the court considers the following factors: 1) whether the parties were already married at the time of their marriage ceremony; 2) whether the parties were underaged and did not have the necessary approvals, or 3) whether the parties were forced into the marriage without their free will (under duress).

Here, it is extremely interesting to note that the court will not declare a marriage invalid on a variety of grounds, such as family violence, failure of the spouses to live together, non-consummation of marriage, etc.


Important Reasons to Consider Estate Planning

Estate Planning

How do you want your Assets to be distributed after your Death? Important Reasons to Consider Estate Planning

Estate Planning is a crucial process whereby you control the process of distribution and disposal of your assets after your death. By requesting the guidance of competent estate planning lawyers, you can provide for loved ones and dispose off your assets in accordance with your wishes. Each person works hard, often over several decades, to acquire financial and property assets as well as other kinds of resources.

You may own monetary assets, homes, plots of land, jewellery and antiques and so on. Some of us are fortunate enough to inherit wealth. Hence, it a good idea to give adequate thought to estate planning. In other words, estate planning involves much more than simply deciding who inherits your grandfather clock.


Regulation of Corporate Crimes in Australia

Corporate Crimes

Current issues and trends in regulation of corporate crimes in Australia

In Australia, corporate crime is covered by the category of the white collar crimes and can be broadly defined as crime committed within the course of one’s occupation by individuals of relatively high social status. However, in contrast to those white collar offenses which are committed against companies, such as embezzlement or misuse of personal computers, corporate crimes include offences perpetrated by companies or their agents against members of the public, creditors, investors or corporate competitors.

In most cases, corporate crimes have deliberate nature, such as fraudulent billing of the government for examinations that have never been performed, or winding back the odometer in order to deceive prospective customers. In addition to this, a great variety of corporate crimes is connected with recklessness, negligence, or inattention to detail.

In elaborating further, corporate crimes in Australia may be classified in accordance with specificity of a field in which the crimes are committed. Thus, legal experts and criminal lawyers usually categorise corporate crimes as security crimes, tax crimes, crimes in the field of safety and occupational health, environmental crimes, consumer crimes, food standards, restrictive trade practices, economic offences against employees, discriminatory practices, etc.

In view of the aforesaid diversity of corporate crimes, it is essential to highlight the key trends and issues in corporate crime control under Australian law. In this connection, regulatory activity of Australian law enforcement authorities constitutes the first and foremost type of corporate crime control. The fact is that the current regulatory effort of Australian law enforcement bodies is expected to make workplaces, environment and market safer. However, it is also possible to perceive much criticism in respect of Australian regulatory agencies as allegedly inefficient bodies of corporate crime control. This is partially explained by the lack of political leadership in this field.


Any Doubts Regarding Negotiation of Financial Agreement?

Financial Agreement

Family Dispute Resolution can help you Resolve Financial Issues in case of Divorce

Although divorce can be traumatic and overwhelming, it’s important to keep your interests in perspective and negotiate a fair financial agreement. Trusted family lawyers recommend the family dispute mediation rather than going to Family Court; going to court should be the last option, if you are unable to come to an agreement. Family Dispute Resolution encourages partners to work through issues in a logical and understanding manner. Discussions that are driven by resentment and anger will not achieve the desired results.

In Australia, the Family Dispute Resolution process (known as FDR) involves the assistance of an impartial, fair and qualified FDR practitioner who will help the divorcing couple resolve issues in an amicable manner. The objective of the FDR practitioner is to help the divorcing couple reach a mutually satisfying financial agreement.