Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Family Court: Obligations of parents in children's matters

In the recent Family Court case of Larvin and Larvin, Justice Cronin made orders on an undefended basis in a children's matter, after making these comments:

Whilst there are very strong statements by this Court about financial
disclosure, not much is often said about parenting cases where litigants fail to
comply with directions and orders. In a number of ways, it is more important for
parties to comply with the rules and orders that would enable them and the Court
to have some meaningful opportunity to analyse what is best for the children. If
parties do not comply, a Court should not be reticent about striking
applications out and precluding participation. Children have a right to have
their futures settled as quickly as possible based upon comprehensive
information. A refusal or failure to provide that information leaves a court
with the difficulty of having to decide whether to pursue the information
itself. If a court is satisfied that there is sufficient information, it should
not be reticent about making orders even if it means limiting the participation
of an uncooperative parent.

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