For one thing, they will no longer be living under one roof as a family. The parents might even sell the family home. At a time like this, it is very crucial for both parents to constantly assure their child that he will still receive the same love and care.
It is ideal for parents to enter into a parenting plan that will set out the arrangements for their child. In the parenting plan, the parents can delineate their responsibilities, the schedule for taking care of the child and of course, the financial support. However, not all separations or divorces are amicable. Often the parents have to go to the court for a parenting order since they cannot come to an understanding of the care of their child.
Section 65C of the Family Law Act 1975 provides that a parenting order in relation to a child may be applied by the following persons:
The above provision reflects a situation wherein the parents are not the only ones considered capable of making arrangements for the care of a child. The child can even petition the court for a parenting order. In fact, anyone can ask for a parenting order in relation to a child as long as he can prove to the satisfaction of the court that he is concerned with the care, welfare and development of the child.
The grandparents and relatives of a child may also be considered by the child as important people whom he might want to have continuous contact.
This provision of law is perhaps most reassuring for the non-biological parents, the sperm donors, surrogate mothers and de facto partner who can ask for a parenting order that would allow him/her to care for a child who is not considered as biologically his/her own.