What is a Parenting Plan


A Parenting Plan is a parenting agreement that:

  • is written;
  • is  made by the parents of a child;
  • is signed by the parents of the child;
  • is dated; and
  • deals with any one or more of the following things:
    • who a child lives with;
      • the time a child spends with the other parent, relatives or another person;
        • the allocation of “parental responsibility” for a child;
          • if 2 or more persons are to share parental responsibility for a child, the way those persons consult with one another about decisions to be made for the Child;
            • the (frequency and type of) communication a child is to have with other parent, relatives or another person;
              • the financial support of a child;
                • how disputes about the terms of the Parenting Plan are resolved;
                  • what process will be used to change the Parenting Plan to take account of the changing needs or circumstances of either the Child or the parties to the Parenting Plan;
                    • any aspect of the care, welfare or development of the Child; or
                      • any other aspect of parental responsibility for a Child. 

                    A Parenting Plan is not binding or enforceable unless it is made after 1 July 2006 and amends a previous Court Order. 

                    If the Parenting Plan is not binding or enforceable, the Court will however consider the contents of the Parenting Plan. 

                    An agreement cannot be a Parenting Plan unless it is made free from any threat, duress or coercion. 

                    It was only until 2003 that a Parenting Plan could be registered with the Court. 

                    A Parenting Plan registered prior to the 2003 changes to the law, remains in force until it is revoked by agreement in writing by the parties or by Court Order. 


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                    Content By:
                    Michelle Beatty, Senior Lawyer
                    Virtual Legal

                    Other Questions answered in the How to Document a Parenting Agreement Section


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