Fournier & Noelle 2007 FamCA 875

Two children aged 8 and 11 years had lived with their mother and spent only sporadic time with their father over a period of 4 years (contact limited involvement).  Evidence was presented that the mother had impeded contact between the children and father on seven occasions without reasonable excuse.  The mother had asked the school to change the children’s family name.

The judge found that the mother had not promoted a meaningful relationship between the children and their father, and will not in the future promote a meaningful relationship.  The judge noted that a mother is obliged to encourage children to have contact with their father and to take all reasonable steps to ensure that children go on contact visits.