Journal article

Custody and access disputation and the prediction of children’s safety: A dangerous initiative

I Freckelton, I Freckelton

Psychiatry, Psychology and Law | Published : 1995


Controversial 1995 amendments to the Guardianship Act 1968 (NZ) propose to preclude parties to a marriage from exercising custody or unsupervised access over their children if they are proved to have been violent within the marriage unless they show on the balance of probabilities that the child will be safe in their care. Similar presumptive models are being urged upon a number of other legislatures. Such legislation has an ideological attraction but may have unforeseen, draconian consequences for the resolution of family law disputes. Prediction of dangerousness by mental health professionals has proved to be a flawed art. Yet without such evidence the “violent party” is unlikely to be abl..

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University of Melbourne Researchers

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