At Resolve Conflict Family Lawyers and Mediators our focus is always on the children and finding divorce solutions that keep their welfare front and centre.

Coping with parenting when your children are split between two households and two parents, and in some cases, partners and grandparents, is difficult.  You need patience and a good dollop of kindness and understanding to manage your children.  You also need to have a commitment to consistency between parents.  Setting boundaries and keeping disciplinary measures in place will make life easier for everyone all round, including the children.

Here are some tips that will help you along the way:

  • Try to keep the same rules in place that were followed before the separation. If your kids weren’t allowed to watch television after 6pm don’t suddenly decide that it is OK for them to do that. When kids are feeling like their world is changing, they need to have some sameness in their daily routine.  Maintaining household rules and standards can give them a sense of stability.


  •  If you have a less than cordial relationship with your ex try to enlist the help of a 3rd party to discuss discipline for the children.  To have consistency across both homes will be a great help to you both, no matter how hard that is to achieve.


  •  No matter how hard it is, for your children’s sake, don’t reverse each other’s decisions.  It will only confuse your children.   And don’t say yes when you had agreed to say no.


  •  Most of all – don’t discuss your personal views of the other parent with your child and never try to turn your children against the other parent. Remember, this person is still your child’s father or mother and they deserve the right to have their relationship with them untarnished by your views.  In years to come they will be able to make up their own mind, but for now, hold your tongue. No matter how hurt or angry you are, keep your opinions to yourself and spend some time venting with a close friend, not your children.


  •  Living between two houses can be tough.  Try to achieve a routine that kids can feel comfortable with which will help make them feel secure, and help them manage the division of clothes and other personal items at home and school so they never have the added stress of being without something as it’s at ‘the other parents house’.

It can be a difficult and awkward time transitioning to a two-parent lifestyle but a good result can be achieved. Above all keep talking with your children about how they are feeling and what they are experiencing.

For more information on how you can separate and divorce with or without court please contact our office  – 9620 0088


When can my child decide who they want to live with?

by resconflict on October 17, 2018

When can my child decide who they want to live with? Resolve Conflict Family LawyersA common question for separated parents is, ‘When can my child decide who they want to live with?’ It may seem like a straightforward question, however, the answer is genuinely depended on each individual case and the child.

In Australia there is no minimum age for a child to be able to express their view about where they would like to live in a parenting dispute. The courts, as with all family dispute cases involving children will look at the “best interest of the child”.

Under section 60CC(3)(a) of the Family Law Act there are 16 factors the court must consider when deciding what parenting arrangement is in the child’s best interest.

Determining the child’s best interests

The child’s wish is only 1 of the factors the courts will consider, and by itself the child’s wish may not be decisive of the dispute. As previously mentioned the court’s paramount consideration is to make decisions in the best interests of the child. In determining what the best interests of the child are the court must first primarily consider:

  • the benefit to the child of having a meaningful relationship with both of the child’s parents; and
  • the need to protect the child from physical or psychological harm from being subjected to, or exposed to, abuse, neglect or family violence.

Additionally, the court must also decide how much weight it places the child’s views based on an assessment of:

  • the child’s maturity or level of understanding (age is not, of itself an indicator of maturity)
  • the child’s level of understanding;
  • whether the wish is well informed; and
  • whether or not the child has been influenced.

The court is required to give the child’s views the amount of weight it considers appropriate in the circumstances of the case. Generally, a child’s view will be given greater weight the older they are and the shorter the period of time until the child reaches the age of 18.

Related Article: A Guide To Co-Parenting

How does the Court find out what the child’s wishes are?

The most common way for a child to express their wishes to the court is by a Family Report. The Family Report is an independent assessment written by a family consultant appointed by the court.

In conclusion, there is no ‘magic age’ a child can decide which parent they want to live with, if you are unable to resolve parenting disputes, we encourage you to speak to us about various dispute resolution options available to you out of court.

Note: This is general information advice only and does not constitute specific legal advice. If you would like further information in relation to this matter or other legal matters, please contact us on 03 9620 0088 or email


Secrets To A Successful Divorce

by resconflict on October 10, 2018

Secrets To A Successful Divorce - Resolve Conflict Family LawyersA successful divorce is one that reduces the emotional, financial and logistical toll that naturally comes with divorce.

The following recommendations, if implemented, can help make sure your divorce runs as smoothly and successfully as possible.

Educate yourself

Now is not the time to be a bystander on what is going on. “Read as much as you can, go to free (or paid) consultations with various professionals (mediators, lawyers, divorce coaches and more). The more information you have regarding your rights and options, the better decisions you will be able to make.”[1]

Communicate openly with your lawyer

Honesty is always the best policy. It is a must that your lawyer is fully aware of your financial matters, or you may find yourself being penalised by the courts or worse your spouse delving into your affairs that could draw out the legal proceedings, making the process lengthy and costly to both parties.

Mind your money

With the end of a relationship comes change, financially you need to work out what income and expense are going to change. With this knowledge you can then plan for your future better, as well as avoid and rude financial shocks.

An easy way to start a new budget is to write down all your income streams and expenses, then work out what is essential and what can be cut back.

Related Article: Financial Do’s and Don’ts During Divorce

Focus on the future

Unfortunately, when emotions are not in check, seemingly insignificant issues can furiously derail an otherwise successful divorce. It’s important to think of what you want for your future and not get caught up in the present, igniting battles that won’t help your future self and more importantly even penalising your future. Not sweating to small stuff is the best way to keep your successful divorce on track.

Take the high road

It’s been said that divorce can either make you a better person or a bitter person. Obviously divorce can be extremely emotive, try not to become personal or critical of your spouse and say or write something you may later regret. Remember that divorce is a process not a fight.

Start with Mediation

Collaborative Family Law or Mediation is often a great option for couples that are able to remain amicable and have a good understanding of their financial standing. Most importantly they want to retain control of what happens to their family and wish to resolve their differences respectfully and privately out of Court.

Related Article: Is Mediation An Effective Solution For Your Divorce?


Note: This is general information advice only and does not constitute specific legal advice. If you would like further information in relation to this matter or other legal matters, please contact us on 03 9620 0088 or email


[1] Rozen Dr M 2013, ‘The 5 Worst Mistakes People Make During Divorce’, Huffington Post, 24th July, viewed 10th October 2018,


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