What If I Don’t Agree With The Family Report?
A Family Report is a document written by a ‘family consultant’. A family consultant is either a psychologist or a social worker. They will usually have extensive experience and expertise with children going through separation. A Family Report provides an independent assessment of the issues involved in the case and can help the Judge hearing the case to make informed and appropriate decisions about arrangements for the children.
The Family Report is only one piece of evidence that the Court will take into consideration in making its decision and therefore is not bound by any specific recommendations made in the report written by the family consultant.
If you don’t agree with the contents of the Family Report, as with any evidence, the appropriate place to challenge this is at a final hearing. This is done by calling the family consultant as a witness. The family consultant can then be cross-examined and asked questions about the contents of the report and their assessment of the family.
If you are currently in a situation where you need to have a Family Report written and you are uncertain as to the process surrounding this, or you need a recommendation for a family report writer, please contact our team at Michael Lynch Family Lawyers. We have an abundance of experience and expertise in this area and often work with Brisbane based psychologists and social workers who we can recommend to you to evaluate your unique situation and write a Family Report that can be submitted to the Court as evidence.
If you would like to learn more about Family Reports and why they are important when children are involved during a separation, you can visit the Federal Circuit Court of Australia’s website. This is particularly helpful to get some basic understanding of what is involved if you have been ordered by the Family Court to have a Family Report written.