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Consistent Rulings in Family Matters

How much influence does the allocated Judge have on your case ?

I am concerned about cases involving family matters where a parent has not committed a crime but is penalised by a judge's interpretation of legislation.

A child has two parents. Gold diggers should not use children as leverage to extract funds from the other parent. The court should try to ensure shared parenting where both parents want time with their children.

Access should not be denied on the grounds of gender or revenge and there should be mechanisms for the parents to work once children are at school. The court should balance this rather than have one parent pay with minimal time with children.

How do we stop abuse of the family law?

I believe children should be protected from manipulation by one parent and judges should look at bias within cases.

Are the judges running kangaroo courts, where verdicts are pre determined? How can time wastage be reduced?

How are cases considered and measured? That is, what is the justification for decisions that affect peoples lives? … who are not criminals!
clown said
I am concerned about cases involving family matters where a parent has not committed a crime but is penalised by a judge's  interpretation of legislation. If a child has 2 parents ..gold diggers should not use children as leverage to extract funds from the other parent.
I believe we have changed the Family Law Act sufficiently to ensure the judge must look at parenting matters in a very different light to that which has been looked at previously. Judges have clear guidelines now since July which directs them to two important key considerations. 1. Rebuttable presumption of shared parental responsibility and 2 if all factors are complied with then substantial or equal time… All of which is clearly defined in the memorandum of explanation attached to the new Act. You cannot stop greed and human nature where one parent wishes to extract vengeance or retribution for all the ills of the failed relationship, however the Shared Parenting Council has focused on chnaging the legislation to make it far harder for these these sorts of individuals to have any impact in court.
clown said
The court should  try to ensure shared parenting where both parents want time with their children.
Prior to July 2006 it was extremely hard to get anywhere near equal or substantially equal time. I believe we are seeing much movement toward this required outcome today. (Notwithstanding issues of violence and contraindicatory factors.)
clown said
Access should not be denied on the grounds of gender or revenge and there should be mechanisms for the parents to work once children are at school. The court should balance this rather than have one parent pay with minimal time with children.
:offtopic:
I cannot easily in a post answer all the issues you raise. I am not clear what you mean exactly. I suspect you are saying both parents should have to work after separation and that one parent the "spends time with parent" should not have to have all the financial burden. This is something we are working on with CSA (Child Support Agency)
clown said
How do we stop abuse of the family law?  I believe children should be protected from manipulation by one parent and judges should look at bias within cases. Are the judges running kangaroo courts, where verdicts are pre determined? How can time wastage be reduced? How are cases considered and measured … that is what is the justification for decisions that affect peoples lives? … who are not criminals!
We can stop abuse of the family law act by working with solicitors who understand the legislation and groups like the SRL's (This forum) who have a lot of first hand experience in court. I suggest you register with the SRL group and have access to their closed forums and communities.

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
 Was my post helpful? If so, please let others know about the FamilyLawWebGuide whenever you see the opportunity
 
Clown said
  Access should not be denied on the grounds of gender or revenge and there should be mechanisms for the parents to work once children are at school. The court should balance this rather than have one parent pay with minimal time with children.
Secretary SPCA said
I cannot easily in a post answer all the issues you raise. I am not clear what you mean eaxactly. I suspect you are saying both parents should have to work after separation and that one parent the "spends time with parent" should not have to have all the financial burden. This is something we are working on with CSA (Child Support Agency).
Clown said
 How do we stop abuse of the family law?  I believe children should be protected from manipulation by one parent and judges should look at bias within cases. Are the judges running kangaroo courts, where verdicts are pre determined? How can time wastage be reduced? How are cases considered and measured … that is what is the justification for decisions that affect peoples lives? … who are not criminals!
We can stop abuse of the family law act by working with solicitors who understand the legislation and groups like the SRL's (This forum) who have a lot of first hand experience in court. I suggest you register with the SRL group and have access to their closed forums and communities.

I have to admit that I have tired of all these debates. Clown above is discussing issues that I have witnessed first hand, and exist without question. At the federal level, if the dramatically skewed statistics are not clear enough evidence, the fact that the FCoA has required such drastic changes is much clearer in its target and tone. I am loathe to disagree with the 'Executive Secretary of the SPCA' since I know that organization has had a large hand in producing the changes - which I certainly applaud.

However, to respond to Clown as though he did not understand his own words is not constructive in any way.

The reality is that the FCoA and the state courts below it have been biased beyond the use of the word. Institutional prejudice is the correct phrasing.

While it is true that to deal with the system one must deal with solicitors and others who understand the system, those procedural efforts should not supplant concern about the moral or ethical problems; much less the human and civil rights issues which are apparent to all.

I would pose the question to Clown: What sort of 'mechanisms' does he (or she?) expect the government to provide?

If s/he means the government should provide childcare and babysitting, - or some sort of nanny service - for the parents in order to allow both to return to work, I will strenuously disagree on the grounds that such structures will be deeply regulated. Such regulations are commonly abused, if not perverse from their inception, and result in practically opposite results from those intended on moral grounds - on which grounds such things are called into existence.

The fact must be recognized that law and regulation are too slow and too shallow a mechanism to deal with complicated human issues such as arise in family situations.
The disjoint structures allowing 'discretion' and relying on 'due process' are equally incapable. They become crutches for the whims of the magistrates and lawyers, and means to manipulate the outcome - rarely truly delivering 'justice' based on the facts.

To suggest further government involvement at any level is as irrational as the concept of family law itself.

As proof, I offer the fact that "Family law is different", which simply states that family law does not follow the principles of law to which all other law must conform.

The specific proofs range from the changes in FCoA procedures to the tens of thousands of dissatisfied litigants from all levels of the courts.

The simple issue of disability destroys all of the rationales which guide family law, discretion, and due process - as has been evident.

I do not believe that an end to the abuse of family law can be achieved by solicitors, barristers, or any other 'experts' on the mechanisms and functions of the court at any level.
The best that can be achieved is to play the game better, but it is still just a game which plays with human lives - parents, children, and affects millions of others - and must ignore the expression of feelings common to all human beings.

I have come to the conclusion that an objective test of the competence of the courts will be when the courts do not condemn a parent, man or woman, for speaking truthfully that they love their children, or - indeed - the other spouse.

Under the perverse attitude which guides due process and discretion today, a man is told emphatically to never tell the court that he loves his children. To say that what is before a court is 'family law' and then take such an attitude only condemns the courts.

Because the courts have proven incapable, the courts require constant defence and reactionary response. The very tone of the defences best illustrates the courts' incompetence on these issues. Indeed, the recent changes acknowledge the need, even if the words will never be spoken publicly.

Judges are running 'kangaroo courts' at all levels. The imposition of equal parenting suffers from the same tendency of the courts to accede to whatever the current political wind is blowing. This tendency is my greatest fear regarding the current drift. The courts have ignored the letter of the law for recent decades, and suddenly now respond? When the wind drifts away, they will do the same.

No principle - moral, legal, human, or otherwise - is cited as guides to recent decisions. The reasons are strictly procedural. - Procedures can change as quickly any other way.

Clown must accept and recognize that the courts do not have to offer any justification for their decisions on moral, social, or ethical grounds. The only justification lies in due process, which is as easily manipulated by any magistrate on any day.

It should be said that until moral, social, and ethical grounds are imposed upon the courts, there will be no permanent change.

To assume that the recent changes have imposed such morality on the courts is irrational because of the established role of the courts in society.

What is needed is to define the limits of the courts' authority; not to attempt to widen that authority with more inept laws.

PaulD

Consistant Rulings

When you are referring to this issue - are you talking about a specific case? or to the majority of decisions? Unfortunately for people that have received or know of a 'bad' decision there is a belief that the whole system is flawed. The Family Courts system is people based, from the Litigants to the Judges interpreting the Acts and Case Law and despite similarities no two cases are identical. Yes - there have been some awful decions made by the Courts but this does not mean that the Courts make consistantly bad decisions.

This site has a wealth of material to search on which will give you some idea of the variation of judgements. Unfortunately often because of brevity these do not give 100% of the 'picture' of what actually happened in the Court room


Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (look for the Avatars) Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
Amoranthus said
I have to admit that I have tired of all these debates. Clown above is discussing issues that I have witnessed first hand, and exist without question. At the federal level, if the dramatically skewed statistics are not clear enough evidence, the fact that the FCoA has required such drastic changes is much clearer in its target and tone.
We have moved at least a step closer (This year with new court rules and new legislation) to seeing more consistent rulings which is what this thread is about and I agree with Agog that not all cases are bad but some are and some are really bad. BUT there are good outcomes and I have personally assisted a number of litigants to get good outcomes.

I absolutely agree with Amoranthus that we tire on the same old debate. We have to move on from this old generic stereotyping of all is bad if you go to court as my experience is that it is not all bad.

The Shared Parenting Council is investing vast amounts of time, money and effort into a range of new initiatives. This Portal or Community site for groups, litigants and others especially the Library and group secured forums, the planned conference in Canberra to be announced, the Children's Rights Council relationships, the review into case law, the  submissions relating to relocations, the implementation of case outcome monitoring of the family , federal and local court decisions since the new laws and particularly a vast amount of work being done with the Child Support Agency.

Clown needs to itemise his list of issues into bullet points so we can answer them one at a time in a more definitive way
:christmas:

Executive Secretary - Shared Parenting Council of Australia
 Was my post helpful? If so, please let others know about the FamilyLawWebGuide whenever you see the opportunity
 

Consistant Rulings

How about we move this one step further along and agree there were many awful decisions made prior to July 2006. But now focus on decisions made after July 2006.

Is what Clown referring to PRE or POST July?


Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (look for the Avatars) Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
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