Over the last few months, there has been a particular focus in
the media with respect to delays in the Family Court of Australia
and Federal Circuit Court of Australia, and the difficulty that
those Courts have in dealing with, particularly, family violence
issues that arise within families.
What has not garnered the same amount of attention, is adoption.
The idea of what constitutes a family is evolving over time and, as
a consequence of a number of issues (which can include the family
violence problems that plague families involved in family law
proceedings within the Family Court system) there can be a need for
children to be adopted. Often times, that is within the child's
family, but there are other times where children don't have the
luxury of other family members being able to step in and care for
This week is National Adoption Awareness Week (NAAW). NAAW
exists to raise awareness of adoption and the importance of
permanency for children, and provides education on support needs of
children and families. It is explicitly stated on the
NAAW website that the purpose of NAAW is to "facilitate a
community that looks after our most vulnerable – our
Therefore, there are real parallels between the practice of
family law, the involvement of parties in the Family Court of
Australia and the adoption process. The Family Law Act has the best
interests of children as the paramount principle upon which the
Court makes decisions. Similarly, the purpose of adoption is to
ensure that children are properly cared for and, by extension,
their best interests met.
Adoption is a complicated process. There are a number of hurdles
over which families need to jump to see a child be adopted into
their family – regardless of whether it is an inter family
adoption, or an inter country adoption.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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