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If we cannot agree on a child custody arrangement, how will a judge decide?

Section 60C (c) of the Australian Family Law Act 1975 defines how the Court determines what is in a child’s best interests. The primary considerations in child custody are the benefit to the child of having a meaningful relationship with both parents and the need to protect the child from physical and psychological harm as a result of being subject to or exposed to abuse, neglect or family violence.

There are 13 additional considerations for the Court when making parenting orders regarding child custody. These include any views expressed by the child, an examination of the relationship of the child with each of the child’s parents and/or other persons, the parent’s ability to facilitate an ongoing relationship between the child and the other parent, likely effects of change in the child’s circumstances, and the practical expense and difficulty of the child spending time and communicating with the parent. 

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