Rules for Child Relocation

A child’s wishes can hold some weight in issues where a court is determining what is in their best interests. They may have an opinion on where they want to live, who they want to live with, how much time they spend with each parent and other important considerations.

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What are the guidelines for child relocation?

In AMS v AIS (1999) FLC 92-852, one parent wanted to relocate with the child of the relationship.

The High Court considered the following principles and guidelines for child relocation cases:

  • The court cannot determine the issue in a way that separates the issue of relocation from that of residence and the best interests of the child.
  • Parents don’t need to show compelling reasons for or against the relocation.
  • The best interests of the child are to be evaluated taking into account the legitimate interests of both parents.
  • Neither the applicant nor respondent bears an onus of proof.
  • The court is not obliged to ignore the legitimate interests and desires of the parents just because the child’s best interests are paramount, though the child’s welfare and rights must be given priority.
  • Where a parent proposes changes to residence or contact arrangements with the child, they must demonstrate that doing so would be in the child’s best interests.

Why speak to a Perth Family Lawyer 

Child relocation matters can be highly complex. As a result, we recommend that you seek legal advice specific to your individual circumstances from our highly qualified and experienced Perth Family Lawyer Shannon Bodeker. Shannon Bodeker has been working in family law for over 20 years and has High Court experience in child relocation.

Before your first appointment, you are welcome to send an email to outlining your situation in as much detail as you feel comfortable with. This information will be read free of charge prior to your first family law appointment. We will get to know you and your family law matter before we meet. This will save you valuable time and will save legal fees.

Please keep in mind that the above information is not family law advice, and it is important to seek advice specific to your circumstances and your child relocation matter.

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