When your relationship breaks down, reaching an agreement about the future care and living arrangements for children can be a difficult task.

Obtaining specialised legal advice on parenting plans and orders will ensure your child’s best interests are prioritised.

At Turnbull Hill Lawyers, we believe that your child’s well-being is paramount when it comes to any form of parenting agreement. Indeed, the Family Law Act 1975 makes it clear that arrangements involving shared responsibilities and cooperation between parents must be in the best interests of the child. Additionally, both parents are responsible for the child’s care and welfare until the child reaches 18.

Not sure where to start? Drawing on over 55 years of experience in children’s matters, our family lawyers in Sydney, Newcastle and Maitland are here to help. Contact us today for tailored guidance with parenting plans and parenting orders.

Formalise your parenting agreement

Separation is a stressful time for the whole family. Children may react in different ways, depending on their age, temperament and the level of parental conflict. Know that your child can still flourish, especially if they retain supportive relationships with both parents.

There are multiple ways to record parenting arrangements after separation. Discover the most suitable way forward for your family circumstances.

Parenting Plans

Parenting plans

A parenting plan is a written agreement that records the agreed care arrangements for the children. Parenting plans are often useful for parents with young children or for parents who know that circumstances are likely to change in the future.

This document records the amount of time that parents spend with their children, where the children live, the allocation of parental responsibility, communication with the children, and the process for resolving disputes about the living arrangements of the children in the future.

Parents can create a parenting plan at any stage after separation. However, as a parenting plan is not a legal document filed with the Family Court of Australia, it cannot be subject to any application for contravention and therefore is not enforceable.

While a parenting plan does not have to be drafted by a family lawyer, obtaining legal advice will help to ensure its arrangements serve your child’s best interests.

Parenting orders

Parenting orders

If you and your partner have reached a parenting agreement outside of the courtroom, it can be legally formalised with an Application for consent orders to the Family Court of Australia.

The Court will issue orders to enforce this parenting agreement if it is satisfied that its terms are in your child’s best interests. Parenting orders, once made, are legally binding until the child is 18 years old.

This will make it far easier and more cost-effective to resolve future parenting disputes. If one party refuses to comply with the terms, your parenting order can be subject to a Contravention Application. In this case, the Court has various powers, including:

  • modifying the parenting order;
  • ordering the offending party to:
    • pay a fine;
    • enter into a bond;
  • serve a prison sentence, and/or
  • pay the legal costs of the other party.

This long-term solution is suitable for parents who want certainty for their children moving forward. Parenting orders cannot be changed unless both parties agree or a significant change in circumstances has arisen that was not reasonably foreseeable at the time of making the orders.

Parenting plans and orders with Turnbull Hill Lawyers

Get reliable advice and support with children’s matters after separation. Whether you would like to put a parenting plan or parenting order in place, our dedicated Family Law team is here to help you navigate the entire legal journey smoothly.

Trusted Family Law solicitors

Equipping NSW families with invaluable legal services since 1969, our parenting agreement lawyers possess the commitment, experience and resources to champion your child’s best interests.

Genuine value-for-money

Ensure your parenting agreement is structured correctly with the highest standard of legal services. We strive to achieve optimal outcomes for our clients as cost-effectively as possible.

Personalised support

No two families are the same. That’s why our family lawyers always take the time to understand your unique needs and objectives when drafting the legal documents for a parenting plan or order.

Efficient service

Our Family Law team manages each case with exceptional efficiency and, when necessary, urgency to meet your deadlines. We are readily accessible and proactive throughout this process.

Reliable solutions

Prepare a fair, comprehensive and enforceable parenting agreement. We harness practical and creative strategies to help you overcome challenges wherever possible – and move on with confidence.

Unwavering commitment

Turnbull Hill Lawyers has been trusted by thousands of families through word-of-mouth referrals. Our unparalleled reputation lies in our dedication to delivering personable and reliable service with meticulous attention to detail.

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