Commonwealth Consolidated Acts

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Meaning of parenting plan and related terms

  (1)   A parenting plan is an agreement that:

  (a)   is in writing; and

  (b)   is or was made between the parents of a child; and

  (ba)   is signed by the parents of the child; and

  (bb)   is dated; and

  (c)   deals with a matter or matters mentioned in subsection   (2).

  (1A)   An agreement is not a parenting plan for the purposes of this Act unless it is made free from any threat, duress or coercion.

  (2)   A parenting plan may deal with one or more of the following:

  (a)   the person or persons with whom a child is to live;

  (b)   the time a child is to spend with another person or other persons;

  (c)   the allocation of parental responsibility for a child;

  (d)   if 2 or more persons are to share parental responsibility for a child--the form of consultations those persons are to have with one another about decisions to be made in the exercise of that responsibility;

  (e)   the communication a child is to have with another person or other persons;

  (f)   maintenance of a child;

  (g)   the process to be used for resolving disputes about the terms or operation of the plan;

  (h)   the process to be used for changing the plan to take account of the changing needs or circumstances of the child or the parties to the plan;

  (i)   any aspect of the care, welfare or development of the child or any other aspect of parental responsibility for a child.

Note:   Paragraph   (f)--if the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 applies, provisions in a parenting plan dealing with the maintenance of a child (as distinct from child support under that Act) are unenforceable and of no effect unless the provisions in the plan are a child support agreement (see section   63CAA and subsection   63G(5) of this Act).

  (2A)   The person referred to in subsection   (2) may be, or the persons referred to in that subsection may include, either a parent of the child or a person other than the parent of the child (including a grandparent or other relative of the child).

  (2B)   Without limiting paragraph   (2)(c), the plan may deal with the allocation of responsibility for making decisions about major long - term issues in relation to the child.

  (2C)   The communication referred to in paragraph   (2)(e) includes (but is not limited to) communication by:

  (a)   letter; and

  (b)   telephone, email or any other electronic means.

  (3)   An agreement may be a parenting plan:

  (a)   whether made before or after the commencement of this section; and

  (b)   whether made inside or outside Australia; and

  (c)   whether other persons as well as a child's parents are also parties; and

  (d)   whether it deals with other matters as well as matters mentioned in subsection   (2).

Note:   One of the other matters with which a parenting plan may deal is child support (see section   63CAA).

  (4)   Provisions of a parenting plan that deal with matters other than the maintenance of a child are child welfare provisions .

  (5)   Provisions of a parenting plan that deal with the matter mentioned in paragraph   (2)(f) are child maintenance provisions .

  (6)   A registered parenting plan is a parenting plan:

  (a)   that was registered in a court under section   63E as in force at any time before the commencement of the Family Law Amendment Act 2003 ; and

  (b)   that continued to be registered immediately before the commencement of the Family Law Amendment Act 2003 .

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