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Offence – Removing a Child From Australia

Did you know:

It is a Commonwealth offence for a person to take or send a child from Australia:

– contrary to an order limiting or preventing the child’s overseas travel
– where court proceedings for a parenting order are pending, or
– where an appeal against a parenting order is pending.

These offences are punishable by up to three (3) years imprisonment.  Additionally, taking or sending a child from Australia contrary to an order of the court may result in contempt of court.

If you are wanting to relocate to another country then you should obtain the consent of the other parent, regardless of whether there are court orders in place or not.  If there are no orders and the children are taken to a country which is a member of the Hague Convention (The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction) the other parent can apply to the courts in that country (under the convention) for the children to be returned to Australia.

The Role of Mediation

If you can’t reach an agreement on relocation you may need to participate in mediation prior to making application to court.  Don’t hesitate to make an enquiry if you find yourself in that position.