Childbirth maintenance for pregnant, single moms
September 4, 2019
Are you an expecting mother who has separated from the father of your unborn child? The Family Law Act 1975 allows expecting single mothers to apply to the Family Court to have the father of the unborn child provide financial support.
I’m seperating, what do I do next?
Separating is daunting and many people experience a range of emotions, particularly in the early days of a relationship break up. You might feel numb, powerless and angry. Or you might feel a sense of sadness and loss. Most people also feel anxious about trying to work through all of the practicalities that are involved and are not sure where to start.
Surrogacy Law – are we failing to keep up with the changing nature of the Australian family?
April 7, 2019
It is now broadly acknowledged that the nature of Australian families has changed significantly in recent decades. Families now come in many shapes and sizes. They are becoming increasingly more “blended” (as couples dissolve and re-partner), and they include parents who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and single by choice.
Read client feedback on our lawyers
March 20, 2019
"I just wanted to say thank you to yourself (Lucy)
and Danielle for all your support over the past
seven months. Your support has been invaluable
and I’m extremely grateful for the outcome we’ve
achieved. I really appreciate everything you have
done for my boys and I. Thank you. "
"Your company is very professional and your staff
were amazing. Thank you."
ANOTHER HAPPY P&D CLIENT
"I will recommend you to my friends and family (should it
ever arise that they are in need) and I will let them know
the professional manner in which you conducted yourself
and had my child's best interests at heart."
"Thank you so much for all of your support over the
recent months. Your advice and assistance has been
invaluable. I am really happy with the outcome we have
achieved under the circumstances."
ANOTHER HAPPY P&D CLIENT
ANOTHER HAPPY P&D CLIENT
Access to Justice: Family Law advice in regional WA
March 11, 2019
The sheer size of the State of Western Australia raises unique challenges for separating couples that live in rural, regional and remote areas. The geographical size and distribution of the population in WA means that many find it difficult to access legal advice and may incur additional costs in doing so. Ancillary services, such as family dispute resolution and counselling, are also often difficult to locate and can require long distance travel.
In August 2018, the Law Council of Australia released its final report into the state of access to justice in Australia. The ‘Justice Project’ focused on a number of groups experiencing significant disadvantage in terms of access to the legal system and legal services. One of the findings of the Project was that additional funding and resources are required to maintain and, where required, expand regional courts, having regard to their important function in upholding the rule of law and fostering community engagement through a tangible local presence.
- The Justice Project report also recommends that alternative dispute resolution is available and taken up in rural, regional and remote In most cases, attendance at family dispute resolution is now compulsory and parents who wish to resolve disputes relating to children are required to make a genuine effort to do so before commencing court proceedings.
- At Paterson & Dowding we have a number of practitioners who have lived and worked in regional and remote Australia, including Pinjarra, Bunbury, Geraldton, Port Hedland and Broome.
We have lawyers who can visit clients and attend court in regional WA. The Family Court of WA is located in Perth, however, court documents may be filed in the registries of the Magistrates Court throughout WA. Regional Magistrates can also hear urgent family law matters before transferring the proceedings to the Family Court. The Family Court can then list matters in a country circuit conducted by a family law Magistrate.
A country circuit is where judges and magistrates travel to regional towns throughout the year. The Family Court of WA currently holds circuits in Bunbury, Albany, Broome, Geraldton and Kalgoorlie.
The Court has recently taken steps to provide for electronic filing of most family law documents which should make this process considerably easier for those who do not live in the Perth metropolitan area. This is provided, of course, that rural, regional and remote West Australians also have access to the necessary technology and telecommunications infrastructure to allow them to take advantage of this service.
At Paterson & Dowding, we understand the additional challenges that are involved in trying to resolve disputes that involve one or more party living in the country, including difficulties of privacy and confidentiality in smaller communities. Our lawyers have experience in dealing with financial issues that are unique to rural landholders, including the conflict that arises between the farmer who may be asset rich and cash poor and the need for a financial settlement that does not involve the selling of the family farm.
If you live in a rural, regional and remote area of WA and need help with your family law matter, please contact us.