Family law and child protection collaboration

Family law and child protection collaboration

In certain situations children can be involved in the state and territory child protection systems and the federal family law system.

The Attorney-General’s Department is involved in a number of projects to improve collaboration between these two systems to streamline processes and practices.

Information sharing in family law and child protection

Professor Richard Chisholm AM was engaged by the department in April 2012 to assist with the development of a best practice framework to improve the exchange of information by the federal family courts and the state and territory child protection systems.

In March 2013, the department published the report Information-Sharing in Family Law and Child Protection: Enhancing Collaboration. The project aimed to ensure that information relevant to decisions about children is appropriately shared between the family law system, the state and territory child protection system, and the legal aid commissions and independent children’s lawyers.

The report includes a model information sharing agreement to guide the development of agreements between the family law courts, child welfare authorities and relevant stakeholders.

In May 2013, the department engaged Professor Chisholm to review in more detail, the sharing of experts’ reports between the child protection system and the family law system. A taskforce comprising representatives from key stakeholder groups assisted with the preparation of this report.

National Child Protection and Family Law Collaboration meetings

The department chairs national collaboration meetings with officers from state and territories who are involved in the child protection and family law systems.

These meetings facilitate discussions on initiatives that are being undertaken to improve collaboration between these systems.

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