Paper name: Essay Example

  • Category:
    Law
  • Document type:
    Assignment
  • Level:
    Undergraduate
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Family Law 3

Family Law

Parental responsibility under section 61b of the Family Law Act 1975 means authority, duties, responsibilities and the power parents have over their children. According to this act on section 61c both parents of a child who is below 18 years have to take the responsibility bringing up the child in all the means possible to ensure a child gets the important resources that will necessitate the child’s up keep. The term ‘parental responsibility’ refers to the most important responsibilities that parents should undertake to ensure that their children benefit in the long term for providing the needs such as health, education and even the best religion. These responsibilities should be equally shared unless one of the parents is believed to have engaged in any form of child abuse or family violence. Parental responsibility does not change in any case there are changes in the parents’ life such as separation or divorce. This means that the parents will continue to share the responsibility just as they were living together. Parental responsibility means that the parents take the duties and responsibility of bringing up the child as long as they are the parents of the child.

Therefore, in Annie Brown’s case the parents should take parental responsibility in bringing up the children. Tyler Wakefield should take responsibility in taking parental duties and responsibility as the parent of the child. He should be paying for the upkeep of his son including paying school fees and ensuring he is getting the necessities. The act calls for family law problems to be solved out of court and they could only resort to court if they can’t agree about the child issue. The family law calls for any disputes regarding the care of the child to be resolved in the best interest of the child. According to the law best interest means that the child should have a meaningful relationship with either parent and the parents should protect them from any harm. The children should also have a relationship with other people in their lives such as grandparents. Therefore, Annie brown should allow his son to have a relationship with his father Tyler Wakefield and in any case there is a believe that there are any elements of child abuse or even negative influence Annie should request for parenting order. The parenting order is issued by court so as to protect the child from a parent who is abusive. Parenting order does not take parental responsibility away and, therefore, any parent who is issued with a parenting order should continue to take the responsibility to bring up the child. This will be the same case with Jessica and his father should take part in raising the child by ensuring that he takes parental responsibility. Any parental responsibilities should be directed towards giving the child the best resources to enable the proper growth. Therefore, Jake who is believed to be Jessica’s father should share the responsibility with Annie in bringing up Jessica by taking responsibility in providing her needs in life.

According to the family law parents should take duties that include the duty to maintain the child and in particular to provide her with adequate diet, shelter, clothing, and medical care including immunisation, and education and guidance. It is also the duty of the parent to ensure that the child is not neglected, abused or even discriminated in the society. Parental responsibility should also extend to giving guidance on cultural, religious, social and moral norms that should be in the best interest of the child by raising the child in the best way possible. Annie should ensure that the biological fathers of her children take part in raising the children by assuming their parental responsibility. The parents should be paying for the up keep of the children and catering for their living expenses. Wakefield and Brown should also be providing school fees for their children because provision of education is one of the duties defined under the family law and it is in the best interest of the children. They should be concerned about the well-being of the children by providing the necessary and the required protection that will not destabilize their background and the social norms. Parental responsibility should also extend to determining the religion which the child should conform to by analysing the religion values that will be helpful in bringing up of a child but not the religion that the parents selfishly want to engage in for the purpose of their status. In parental responsibility every decision made should be in the best interest of the child.

Mediation

According to Annie, Wakefield has been mentioning about mediation so as to take care of their son together. As defined in the Family Law Act mediation is a process by which parties engage into family dispute resolution with the help of person qualified and registered as a mediator. There should a written statement on how the mediation should be taken. Therefore, if Wakefield is interested with the mediation they should notify a dispute resolution practitioner so as to advise them on what to do. In dispute resolution the parties involved with their mediator work to solve their issues which are in disagreement or disputes, make plans to resolve those issues and if possible the mediator should help them come up with options and agree with one of those options. Therefore, Annie and Wakefield should attempt to have an option that will be in the best interest of their child. According to section 61 B of the family act the parents should share responsibility for raising the child by ensuring all the nothing is agreed will end up hurting the child. The dispute resolution practitioner should not impose decisions on the clients. Mediation will better for being in the best interest of their son because the son will like to spend time with his father and the father could also pay for the child’s expenses include those of education. Every decision that should reach at the dispute resolution should ensure that interests of the child are not put at stake. Mediation does not necessarily mean that the parents will be living together but means that the parents will undertake parental responsibility together for the best interest of the child.

Mediation should be in the best interest of the child and, therefore, Annie should not go for mediation with Wakefield because of her own interest. This means that every decision that Annie undertakes should ensure that his son is the one to benefit fully from this arrangement. Annie should not accept any mediation if his son will end up being affected by this mediation in terms of behaviour. According to Annie Wakefield who is his son’s father has a history of drug abuse and family violence and, therefore, it won’t be in the best interest of the child because this would to bad influence. Therefore, mediation should be to ensure that Wakefield take parental responsibility especially in paying the child’s school fees. In case the child wants to live with his father Annie should not allow this unless there is a third party who could not be influenced by Wakefield. This will ensure that child’s interests are put ahead of any decision. Mediation should ensure that the child receive the best values from their parents. Annie should ensure that every decision taken protect her children from any bad influence that will affect their growing.

In regards to change of name of Terry, Tsu should ensure that Annie is in consent with the changing of the name or should have a court order that will allow him to change the name of his son. Again the change of a child’s name should be in the best interest of the child but not into the interest of the parents. Both parents should be in agreement that changing of the name will not affect the life of the child in anyway. The parent who feels that there is need to change name of the child should make an application to the court explaining the reasons for this changes. The change of a child name is only allowed to happen to children who are below twelve years. The reason behind this is that a child is registered with the 60 days of birth and names should be provided during this process. According to the law both parents should sign in ensuring that they are in agreement of the child’s registered. It is in only rare cases the registrar accepts forms signed by only one parent. The parent presenting the forms for child’s registration should convince the registrar that it was hard to get the signature of the other parent. Therefore, Tsu should not force Annie to change the name of Terry without following the right process of getting a court order or by Annie consenting to the change of the name. The interests of the child should be put first before any decision should be concluded.

Changing of the name also depends with names appearing on the birth certificate if the names of both parents are appearing on the birth certificate they should also apply for change of name together so as to show consent. This is to ensure that both parents are in agreement for the change of name to occur. Children who are 12 years and above should agree to changing of their names and they have a right to oppose the change of the name. In cases where parents cannot agree on the name change, the parent who wants the name changed should apply to the Family Law Courts for an order to change the name. The parent who does not agree with the change can also apply for a restraining order so as to stop the other parent from changing the name. This restraining order will stop registering of a different for the child. Therefore, in this case if Annie is not in agreement to the name changing of their son. She should go to the court to seek a restraining order. This will stop Tsu from forcing the name change of the child for his own interest. The reason behind this is that Tsu does not consider the interest of Terry before proposing the changing of the name. The changing of the name should be in the best interest of the child and Tsu interests are selfish because he wants to raise his status in their religion and society.

Paternity Testing

Paternity testing is a scientific process that is aimed at identifying the biological parents of a child. This involves the parties suspected to be the biological parents and the child in question. Annie may seek to take parentage test so as to identify who is the biological father of his daughter, Jessica. The reason behind this is that Annie is not sure about this issue and he suspects that it is either Brown or Barney. The registered father of Jessica is Brown but Annie is not sure of this because she had sex with both of them during the time Jessica was conceived. This parentage testing will enable Annie to request for parental responsibility from the biological father of the child. This will be fair because Annie could be requesting for resources as part of parental responsibility from the wrong man. It is very important so as to seek child maintenance. The Family Law Act 1975 calls for child maintenance to be undertaken by the biological parents of a child. The law states that the biological parents are primarily responsible for maintaining the child in the best way possible by providing all the necessary things that could hinder their growth. According to the family law parent means the biological parents of a child and they should be entrusted in raising this child to the child’s best interest. Parentage testing will give the truth who is the real father of Jessica and this will help in parental responsibility this will eliminate any doubts that Annie might be having about the paternity of Jessica. The biological father will help in protecting Jessica against any problems that might arise due to living with Tsu or any other adult they are not related to them.

Family violence

In this case Annie should follow The Family Law Act 1975 Section 60B that lays down objects that in every decision that is made it should be in the best interest of a child. This section states that children should be protected from any king of harm may it be physical or psychological form of abuse. The children should also be protected from family violence. According to section 4AB family violence is defined as any behaviour undertaken by a member of a family that is seen as to threat or violate the freedom of other members of the family. This may result from coercion or excessive control that makes a family member to fear to make any decision in the family. Abuse in relation to a child is defined as assault that includes sexual assault to a child. The person is said to be abusing a child if they are using a child for sexual purposes or as a sexual object in a direct or indirectly. This abuse is evident where the child does not have equal power in the relationship. Violence against child can also result from causing psychological harm to the child subjected or exposed to family violence. In this case Annie is subjected to family violence because Tsu controls her and does not let her make any decisions in the family. Tsu does not provide enough financial support to the family as requested by Annie because she what he provides does not cater for all the family requirements. This form of family violence is evident in Tsu stands on moving the family to China without the consent of Annie and the rest of the family members. Tsu says that no one can stop him from changing Terry’s name to master Chu that will enable him gain more respect in the society. This is not in the best interest of the child and therefore is not the best decision that should be taken by the family.

Family violence can also be seen from the act of Jessica behaviour that she has been hiding in her room and pushing Tsu away while they are hugging. This is evident that Tsu is the cause of this problem because Jessica does not push anyone else away. This will help in researching into conclusion that Tsu has been subjecting Jessica to sexual abuse instead of taking care of her and protecting her from any form of abuse. This is a crime to subject a child to sexual abuse because it has resulted into psychological harm to Jessica and has even resulted to her changing her behaviour towards her family. This kind of family violence means that Annie should take an order to restrain Tsu from going anywhere near Jessica so as to protect her from any harm.

Relocating

The Family Law Act 1975 calls for consent y both parents in writing that they are in agreement to relocating to another area or a country. This means that the law does not allow a child who has pending issues between the two parents to move out of the country with either parent. This can only happen if the court has order the child to relocate with the willing parent. The court should consider the best interest of the child before making any decision. The best interest of the child will be to ensure that there is a meaningful relationship between the child and both parents. Relocating a child might cause psychological harm to a child and this might affect their growth. Therefore, Annie should seek guidance from the court so as to ensure that Terry is not separated from the rest of the family because this will not be in the best interest of the child. This will ensure that the child does not suffer from any psychological harm that could result to forceful relocation of the family to another country. This should also be the same case with other parents of Annie’s kids. The interest Tsu should not be put first in deciding the relocation issue because this will result to bad influence from the Tsu family who practice Sikhism which is against the values of Christianity.

According to the family law parents should take duties that include the duty to maintain the child and in particular to provide her with adequate diet, shelter, clothing, and medical care including immunisation, and education and guidance. It is also the duty of the parent to ensure that the child is not neglected, abused or even discriminated in the society. Parental responsibility should also extend to giving guidance on cultural, religious, social and moral norms that should be in the best interest of the child by raising the child in the best way possible. Annie should ensure that the biological fathers of her children take part in raising the children by assuming their parental responsibility. The parents should be paying for the up keep of the children and catering for their living expenses. Wakefield and Brown should also be providing school fees for their children because provision of education is one of the duties defined under the family law and it is in the best interest of the children. They should be concerned about the well-being of the children by providing the necessary and the required protection that will not destabilize their background and the social norms. Parental responsibility should also extend to determining the religion which the child should conform to by analysing the religion values that will be helpful in bringing up of a child but not the religion that the parents selfishly want to engage in for the purpose of their status. In parental responsibility every decision made should be in the best interest of the child.

References

Family Law Act 1975.

Gray, Beatrice, ‘Relocation of a child’s residence: correct approach: guideline judgment’ (2000) 6(6) Current Family Law 246

Green M, ‘U v U, you v me, us v them’ (Paper presented at the 8th Australian Institute of Family Studies Conference, Melbourne, 12–14 February 2003), http://www.aifs.gov.au/institute/afrc8/green.pdf

Hocking, Barbara Ann & Guy, Scott, ‘Contemporary issues in Australian family law: do we need a more unified and interventionist judicial model?’ (2004) Singapore Journal of Legal Studies 76

Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, Bringing Them Home: Report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from their Families, Commonwealth of Australia, 1997

Hymowitz, Paul, ‘Relocation: parents’ needs, children’s interests’ in Linda Gunsberg & Paul Hymowitz (eds), A handbook of divorce and custody: forensic, developmental and clinical perspectives (2005) Hillsdale NJ: Analytic Press Inc, 301–314

Inglis BD, ‘The Care of Children Act and separated parents’ (2005) July The New Zealand Law Journal 233

Kaspiew, Rae, ‘Equal parenting or the effacement of mothers? B and B and the Family Law Reform Act 1995 (Cth)’ (1998) 12 Australian Journal of Family Law 69

Kay, Joseph, ‘International relocation through the prism of the rights of the child’ (Paper presented at the 4th International Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights, Cape Town, 20–23 March 2005)