Family Law news and recent cases

A Newsletter for private clients and their advisors

In this Newsletter, we look at the James Hardie case and its implications for company directors. We also examine why there is an increasing number of international family law disputes, and provide details of the new swimming pool register and the renamed Federal Magistrates Court.

Directors must learn from James Hardie case

Anyone who is a director of a company, even a private family company, should heed the lessons learned from the James Hardie penalty proceedings handed down in the NSW Court of Appeal last November.

The proceedings saw penalties imposed against James Hardie's former non-executive directors and former company secretary and general counsel for their roles in providing the market with incorrect information, which breached the Corporations Act.   Read More >>>

Global family disputes on rise

The increasing frequency of marriages between couples from different cultures and nationalities has led to more family law disputes arising across borders. It is particularly concerning to learn that more than 250 children every year are abducted by a parent or other family member into or out of Australia.

The Australian Government has several avenues available to help parents seeking to be reunited with children who have been taken unlawfully overseas. But there still remains much to do to speed up this process.  Read More >>> 

Reminder to register your pool or risk being fined

The Swimming Pools (Amendment) Act 2012 requires all NSW homeowners to register their pools and spas by 29 October 2013, failing which a fine of $220 may be imposed.

The NSW Government has now launched the Swimming Pool Register, enabling registrations 
to be made online at  
swimmingpoolregister.nsw.gov.au. Registering your pool online is free. You can also register your pool at your local council by filling in a Pool Registration form but councils may charge up to $10 to enter your information from the form on to the online Register.

Once the pool has been registered, homeowners can apply for a compliance certificate from their council or an accredited certifier (costing up to $150). Any property with a pool will be required to provide a certificate of compliance before being sold or leased after 29 Aprii 2014. For further information, refer to the link above or the legislation at:
ustralia will most likely be aware that the court changed its nam
Federal Magistrates Court renamed

Those of our clients who have dealings with the Federal Magistrates Court of Australia will most likely be aware that the court changed its name to the Federal Circuit Court of Australia in April 2013.

The jurisdiction, status and arrangements under which the Court operates hasn't changed but the title of the Chief Federal Magistrate has changed to Chief Judge and Federal Magistrates are now called Judges.

The change was made to more accurately reflect the Court's role as a lower level federal trial court. The inclusion of "circuit" to the name reflects the Court's circuit work in regional areas and its broad Commonwealth jurisdiction in both family law and general federal law. 

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