The first three years of the Family Law Reform Act


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Family Matters article

April 2001


Helen Rhoades

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This article represents a shortened version of the Executive Summary of a report by the authors of research undertaken into the operation of the Family Law Reform Act 1995, from the time it came into effect in June 1996 to the end of 1999. An overview of the main findings under the following headings is provided: No evidence of shift towards shared parenting among the target population; From certainty to confusion; Increase disputes; Terminology; Best interests of children?; Interaction of child support and shared residence arrangements; Increasing incidence of disputes about contact; and Increased pressure on women who fear violence to provide contact.

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