International Family Law Matters
Often, people find themselves living in more than one country during their de facto relationship or marriage
THIS CAN MEAN SOME ASSETS ARE LOCATED OUTSIDE OF AUSTRALIA, AND IF THEY HAVE CHILDREN, THERE MAY BE OTHER CONSIDERATIONS AND COMPLEXITIES.
International family law matters are often extremely complex and require early and considered advice. Taking steps in the wrong jurisdiction can have irreparable consequences.
Families may be living overseas, or have lived overseas at the time of separation, and this may present uncertainty for them about where they stand, or what their next steps should look like.
Issues of jurisdiction, enforcement and differences in entitlements, depending on where a property settlement, or parenting agreement takes place, can often occur within an international divorce or separation.
When separating, the Family Law Act applies in Australia but if Orders drawn up here in Australia are not enforceable in another country, this can be problematic.
Our international divorce lawyers have experience in working with lawyers in other jurisdictions and providing advice and assistance with international family matters including:
- International property settlement negotiations and agreements
- International parenting arrangements and agreements
- Serving of documents
- The relocation of children
- International child abduction and urgent child recovery order applications
- Urgent Airport Watch List applications
International Assets in Divorce
We have worked with a number of Australian citizens going through separation or divorce with international intricacies, including a significant number of individuals who have, or are living and working, in a variety of nations.
If you have assets in Australia and in other countries, you may require Court Orders in each jurisdiction where the assets are held to ensure that the terms of your property settlement agreement are able to take effect.
Our team regularly liaise with other specialist international divorce lawyers across the world, to ensure that the terms of our clients’ financial agreements are valid and enforceable in the relevant jurisdictions.
International Divorce: Children and Parenting Arrangements
Where a relationship breaks down and there are matters relating to parenting arrangements, child support, relocation of children or child abduction or recovery, our team is well experienced to provide advice and assistance.
International Parenting Arrangements and Child Support
If you are seeking to determine parenting arrangements where the children are in Australia and one parent is moving internationally, our team has unparalleled expertise in providing the following:
- pre-separation or post-separation advice on how to maximise your opportunity for future time with your children
- advice and assistance relating to the future arrangements for your children
- representation and guidance during family dispute resolution, mediation or discussions with the other parent to assist you to reach an agreement
- legally documenting your parenting agreement to ensure it is binding and enforceable in all relevant jurisdictions
- advocating on your behalf during Court proceedings and preparing all pre-requisite court documentation.
If one parent lives outside of Australia and children are in Australia, receiving or paying for child support can be a complicated area due to varying arrangements and policies of different countries. However, there are laws in Australia to help with child support for children living in Australia.
International Relocation with Children
As family lawyers, we advise parents on both sides of the issue of relocating with children. There are numerous factors that are considered with relocation so it is important to get advice tailored to the circumstances before relocating.
If you have children and separate overseas, it is very important to seek advice from a family lawyer immediately. If you wish to return to Australia you will need to ensure you do not breach any laws of the country you have been living in.
International Recovery of Children
Where there are issues with children being taken by one parent to another country without the others’ consent, the Hague Convention, an international agreement that exists between signatory countries, can be enforced. This international agreement covers international parental child abduction. Generally speaking it provides a method to ascertain which country the child custody case will occur.
Our team can assist where there are concerns about a possible impending removal of children from Australia, contact the Police and seek legal advice immediately from experienced international divorce lawyers. We have assisted in the application for emergency Orders in relation to children’s travel and for childrens’ names added to the Family Law Watch List. This is effectively an airport watch list which alerts Police to the movement of children whose names are on the list.
International Divorce Lawyers
We regularly assist clients from around the world, including expats working outside of Australia, about their options and their rights under Australian family law.
Phillips Family Law has been involved in many cases about the most appropriate forum or jurisdiction, including where we are seeking to continue proceedings in Australia or stay proceedings, which may have been commenced in other countries.
For both property and parenting orders you may not require a lawyer to represent you in multiple jurisdictions but may need to seek advice in each of the countries where there are assets or live. We work with clients to do this effectively. We have a network of international divorce lawyers and family lawyers who we liaise with regularly in different parts of the globe, who we are able to call upon where the need arises.
To arrange to speak with one of our international family lawyers by phone or online, please contact us.