We urgently need this in Canada...
Finally, a victory for father's right - in Australia. I wish one of our political parties would talk, just once, about EQUAL parenting.
THE Family Court will be required to consider whether children in custody disputes should spend equal time with both parents under the most important changes to family law in 30 years.
A bill to be introduced into the House of Representatives today goes further than expected in meeting the demands of fathers' rights groups, which expressed disappointment at an earlier draft.
Under the proposed amendments to the Family Law Act 1975, the court will be required to consider equal time if it is in the child's best interests, and where parents already share parental responsibility for important decisions.
Where it is not in the child's best interest, and where it is not practical, the court must consider giving the non-resident parent "substantial and significant time" with the child.
As well, the Government will amend the existing definition of family violence to make clear that a fear or apprehension of violence must be "reasonable". This is a reaction to concerns that false claims of violence can be a way of denying access to children.
The bill also inserts a presumption of "equal" shared parental responsibility in important decisions - a significant hardening of earlier wording that called for "joint" parental responsibility.