Sole Custody FAQs

Law Blog

Following your divorce or separation, you might opt to seek sole custody of your child. However, since Australian family law relies on the principle of the child's best interests, you are not guaranteed sole custody. Below are some sole custody FAQs that can help you understand the process of seeking sole custody. 

Who Can File For Sole Custody? 

Primarily, the child's parent files for sole custody. However, other parties can also seek custody of the child if they feel that the child is not in a safe environment. For instance, a close relative could ask the courts to allow them to take care of the child if they are worried about the child's safety.  

What Are The Grounds For Filing For Sole Custody? 

The primary reason to file for sole custody is when you are convinced that the child's welfare or life is at risk when living with the other party. For instance, it could be that your partner has physically or sexually assaulted the child. Parents with severe drug issues could also be unfit to raise kids. Finally, some health conditions, such as mental illness, could endanger the child's life. Usually, you bear the burden of proof once you make a sole custody claim. Therefore, you need compelling arguments and sufficient evidence to get a positive result. 

What Should You Consider After Filing For Sole Custody? 

As a rule, you must be cautious about your conduct after filing a sole custody suit. Some behaviours could compromise the case's outcome, putting your child's welfare or life at risk. Once you file the case, the judge gives temporary orders. For instance, they could limit the time that the accused parent spends with the kids. Alternatively, the court could order supervised visitation. The rule is to ensure that you comply with these orders even if you feel that they are unfair. If you breach these orders, the judge could argue that you do not mind the child's welfare. Suppose you are not comfortable with the temporary orders; you could ask your lawyer to appeal the case. 

Can Sole Custody Orders Be Reviewed? 

Arrangements regarding the welfare of your kids should change to suit the current situation. For example, if the judge gave a sole custody ruling since the other parent is violent or a drug addict, you could seek to challenge the judge's orders if the other parent attends rehabilitation or anger management classes. This might seem difficult. However, remember that your child needs to enjoy the love and comfort of both parents. 

If you have a question about family law, reach out to a lawyer in your area. 


27 May 2022

Marriage doesn't have to be a life sentence

No one gets married planning to get divorced, but by the time I see them it's pretty obvious why they are getting divorced. When a marriage is beyond repair I'm there to fight for my clients right's under family and property law and to get them the best deal I can possibly negotiate. Even if you feel like your case is messy or complicated, I can guarantee in my time as a lawyer I have seen and heard worse things! This site has a collection of useful articles and links on developments and case law in the Family Court of Australia.