I’m going through Family Court. Can I record my ex?

In the modern day where nearly everyone has a smart phone or other devices where interactions can be easily recorded, there is a question that is on the rise in family law: “Can I record my ex to prove my point?”  This is a clear layer of security that a lot of people like to have when it comes down to a “he said, she said” type situation.  But what does the law say about recordings?


Changes to the Fair Work Act for Casual Employees: What you need to know

On 27 March 2021, the Federal Government amended the Fair Work Act dealing with casual employees to overcome the effect of recent federal court decision.

Section 15A has been included in the legislation which for the first time introduces a statutory definition of a casual employee.
A person is a casual employee of an employer if:

a) An offer of employment made by the employer to the person is made on the basis that the employer makes no firm advance commitment to continuing and indefinite work according to an agreed pattern of work for the person; and

b) The person accepts the offer on that basis; and

c) The person is an employee as a result of that acceptance. (more…)

The other parent is moving the children interstate without my consent. What can I do?

The decision regarding a child’s place of residence is a long-term decision. Parents generally have shared responsibility for long term decision-making for the children such as their religion, education, serious medical decision and other long-term matters, which includes the issue of residence.  Relocation, being the change of a child’s living arrangements which will make it more difficult for a child to spend time with either parent, is one of those issues that parents are required to discuss and make a genuine effort to settle between them.

The child’s relocation (interstate or otherwise) without the other parent’s consent requires urgent action. It is often the case that if a parent unilaterally leaves the state, taking the child or their children with them, it may be difficult to have them return depending on the circumstances. Immediate action should be taken to address the relocation, and advice should be sought. (more…)

When are the children old enough to decide which parent to live with?

In a recent High Court of Australia decision, Bondelmonte v Bondelmonte, the Court upheld a decision by the Trial Judge that two children, 15 and 17 year old boys, were not able to permanently reside in New York with their father despite expressing a clear desire to do so. It is an important family law decision relating to the wishes of a child.

The case discusses the weight a child’s wishes should be given by Courts exercising their jurisdiction in children’s matters. The Court held that the best interests of the child are not always in line with what the child wishes; even for older children who may have the maturity to understand the impact of their decision. Their wishes should also be considered in a broader context according to the facts of the case. (more…)

Why Guardianship and Powers of Attorney are an important part of your Estate Plan


Making an Enduring Power of Guardianship (EPG) and Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) are an important part of the estate planning process, and they should be reviewed regularly as part of an estate plan.

An EPG allows a person to nominate who they want to make important lifestyle, care and medical decisions when they are no longer able to do so whilst an EPA allows a person to nominate who they want to make financial decisions on their behalf.

An interested person may make an application under the Guardianship & Administration Act (GAA) seeking orders appointing them, or someone else, as the Guardian and/or Administrator of a person (the Represented Person).  The Application is made to the State Administrative Tribunal (the Tribunal).

A key question in any application is whether or not the proposed Represented Person has already made an EPG or an EPA.  If so, then the Tribunal will not make an order unless it considers that the person or persons that have been appointed are not acting in the best interests of the Represented Person.


Welcome Sally Savini!

Sally Savini is the newest member of Culshaw Miller Lawyers’ experienced Family Law team. As a Senior Associate, Sally has a wealth of Family Law experience including the following practice areas:

      • Complex and simple property/financial matters;
  • Care arrangements and welfare of children;
  • Family and domestic violence/abuse;
  • Spousal maintenance;
  • Child Support;
  • Exclusive occupation of the marital home;
  • Financial Agreements;

Sally is a passionate advocate in financial and children’s matters and is committed to achieving the best possible outcome for her clients.

To make an appointment with Sally, don’t hesitate to contact us on (08) 9488 1300.

You can now apply for a Restraining Order online – 12 May 2020

Online Applications for Restraining Orders have now been introduced in Western Australia.

“People seeking the protection of restraining orders have previously been required to visit a court registry to apply. Now it can be done online through registered legal services which provide family violence assistance.

These include Legal Aid WA, Aboriginal Family Law Services and community legal centres. Anybody can contact these agencies by phone, or in person, and be assisted with the lodgement of their restraining order application. People can still go directly to a court to lodge an application.

After the application has been lodged, the applicant will be given a time to attend a court hearing to seek an interim order.”


Media Statement: Victims of violence able to apply for restraining orders online



Legal Aid WA

Aboriginal Legal Service WA

Community Legal Centres WA

Can I represent myself in the Family Court?

There is an entitlement in every court to represent yourself in any hearing and there are a number of protections for self-represented litigants, particularly in the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court, to prevent undue prejudice to your matter. Representing yourself can be difficult and time-consuming, particularly where you juggling work commitments or looking after children.

The Family Court of Australia publishes a number of resources to assist those who represent themselves. Issues covered include the filing of documents, court dress and conduct, procedural matters and even provides access to computers and the internet for those who might not have access to these at home.

Duty solicitors from Legal Aid may be able to provide some assistance to self-represented persons, and the while court staff cannot provide legal advice they can provide information regarding deadlines, filing procedure and can provide do-it-yourself kits for certain important forms and applications.

It can be very difficult for people undergoing a separation or dealing with property settlements and children’s issues to approach their own case with the degree of objectivity that is often required to be able to achieve the best result for their circumstances. An experienced lawyers can assist in providing advice and guidance.

Culshaw Miller Lawyers can provide anything from one off advice to ongoing representation according to your needs. Call us today on (08) 9488 1300.



Family Court of Western Australia Handbook for Self-Represented Litigants

Legal Aid WA: What we do – Family Law

I’ve been served with a Subpoena. What do I do?

What is a subpoena?

A subpoena is an order issued by the Court to compel a person or business to either produce records, or attend court as a witness, or both. The Court issues a subpoena at the request of one of the parties to the proceedings and the document will be served on you.

Do I have to comply with it?

Yes, unless it was not served on you correctly. If you have any concerns about the service of the subpoena you should contact a lawyer to discuss the matter. There are very serious consequences if you do not comply with the subpoena, including the Court issuing a warrant for your arrest or ordering you to pay any costs caused by your non-compliance. The court may also find you guilty of contempt of court. (more…)