On 30 January 2023 the Australian Government released a draft Family Law Amendment Bill 2023 (the exposure draft) for community feedback. The Bill aims to make sure the best interests of children are prioritised and placed at the centre of the family law system by amending the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth)(Family Law Act), with some consequential amendments to the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia Act 2021 (Cth) (FCFCOA Act).
Significant amendments are proposed to streamline the framework for making parenting orders in the Family Law Act. This includes
- refining the list of ‘best interests’ factors at section 60CC with the aim of reducing the complexity and repetition of the section identified by stakeholders, and enhancing the focus on the needs of individual children
- including a separate subsection(s60CC(3)) requiring a court to consider the right of an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander child to have opportunities to connect with, and maintain their connection with, their family, community, culture, country and language, and
- repealing the presumption of equal shared parental responsibility and the related equal time and substantial and significant time provisions.
Submissions closed on 27 February 2023. The exposure draft and consultation can be viewed and downloaded here:
On 29 March 2023 the Bill was introduced to Parliament by the Attorney-General. View progress of the Bill on the Parliament of Australia website.
Responses to Consultation Paper
Submissions have been published on the Attorney-General's Department website:
- Email: FamilyLawReform@ag.gov.au
Family Law Pathways Network - Sydney Events Details
FLPN Greater Sydney Membership & Networking Events
Becoming a member is easy, choose your location from the footer menu below.