Parenting Plans & Custody

During what can be a very emotionally stressful time, it is not unusual that after separation parents find themselves unable to reach an agreement on their child’s living arrangements and disputes often arise. It is important not to involve children in the dispute or expose them or put them in the middle of any conflict. It is best to explain your separation to your children, as early and as impartially as you can, and to communicate it in a way that makes the child feel as secure and as stable as possible.

Each family is unique and so too are the parenting arrangements for your children. A parenting arrangement that may benefit the children in another separated family may not suit your children. Waller Family Lawyers take this into consideration and develop a parenting plan to meet the individual circumstance and needs of your children. Resolving disputes about parenting arrangements for your children is generally best achieved by participating in mediation with your former spouse. Mediation, however, may not be appropriate in cases involving issues of family violence and abuse, or in the case of urgency (e.g. a spouse relocating or threatening to relocate the children interstate or overseas).


Waller Family Lawyers can assist you in the mediation process by:

1. Recommending a mediator (called a dispute resolution practitioner);
2. Preparing you for the mediation, to ensure that the mediation is effective and has the best chance of you reaching agreement with your former spouse;
3. While not essential, attending with you at the mediation; and
4. When agreement is reached, preparing the legal documents to record the agreed parenting arrangements, known as either a Parenting Plan or a Consent Order.


The essential considerations in preparing for mediation to resolve a parenting dispute are:

1. Formulating a plan for the children’s living arrangements which benefit and suit the children, not necessarily you;
2. Ensuring that a parenting proposal is both realistic and practical so that you can reliably care for the children for the time you propose and not risk letting the children down when they are expecting to see you;
3. While equal time with your children may work, it is not mandated by any law and children benefit from the quality of time, not the quantity of time with each parent;
4. The law does expect that, in the absence of issues of family violence and abuse, parents have an equal role in the making of the major long term decisions of their children; and
5. To identify and address any hurdles that may be getting in the way of effectively communicating and co-parenting with your former spouse for the benefit of your children.

The team at Waller Family Lawyers handle all parental agreements and family law issues with the utmost respect and consideration for your child’s needs.
This considerate way ensures the safest and best possible outcome for your child’s welfare– which is what matters most. Waller Family Lawyers can carefully advise you on whether a parenting plan is appropriate in your situation and recommend the best line of action for your parenting dispute.
Contact Waller Family Lawyers now to make an appointment with our team to discuss your situation further.


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