With a team that has experience ranging from 1-30 years we are well positioned to help and advise you on all family law issues related to children. This includes care arrangements, relocation & guardianship, help with Child Youth and Family if they are involved, through to IVF, surrogacy, adoption and paternity identity.
One of the most emotional and urgent issues after a separation is settling the care arrangements for your children. What used to be called “custody” and “access” is now known as “day-to-day care” and “contact”. Many parents are now choosing to share the care of their children and this needs careful thought to ensure the arrangements will work for everyone. We have a wealth of experience in resolving care arrangements and can advise you on all the options.
We can also offer important advice on all guardianship disputes and paternity issues. So you can rest assured you have done the best for your children.
Relocation & guardianship
Usually both parents are guardians of a child and have equal rights to make important decisions for them, like where they will live and go to school. In the event that you want to move town or even relocate to another country with your children, it pays to get legal advice first to avoid any obstacles. On the other hand, if your ex partner decides they want to move or change your child's school and you do not agree, we can explain your rights and lay out your options. For example, as a guardian you can ask the Family Court to make urgent orders to keep the status quo if your ex makes decisions without consulting you.
These are all situations we are ready to help you with.
Child, Youth & Family
We can help you if Child, Youth and Family (CYFS) are involved with your family situation and you want to take part in caring for the child or children involved. We can also give you advice if you want to provide a permanent home to a child when CYFS have placed them in your care, known as the 'Home for Life' option.
IVF & surrogacy
As surrogacy options, IVF and other forms of assisted reproduction are developed, the law regarding them is constantly changing. For example, assisted reproduction raises issues for not only the prospective parents but egg or sperm donors as well. We can advise you on the legal implications for all those involved and explain your rights and obligations regarding the child.
This is a complex area and it is essential to get up-to-date, relevant legal advice early on in the process.
If you are thinking of adopting a child in New Zealand or from overseas, as you would expect, there is a rigorous process to go through. We have the knowledge and expertise to guide you on this journey and carefully prepare the paperwork to meet the high standards required.
Or you may be thinking of becoming a permanent care-giver for a child known as the 'Home for Life' option. We can give you expert help and advice to achieve this.
If for any reason you have to prove the paternity of your child, we can help you organise DNA testing or go to court if necessary.