Relocation: Court Orders explained in full

Court Orders about Relocation

If you have Court Orders in place, hopefully they will contain a clause which prevents a parent from relocating.

If your Court Orders do contain a strong relocation clause, then relocation is a contravention (breach) of the Order, and the non relocating parent can ask the Federal Police to enforce the Court Order to bring the Child to them, if necessary.

A parent wishing to relocate in circumstances where a Court Order prevents relocation, must first apply to the Court to vary the Court Order and obtain permission to relocate.

An additional safeguard might be the type of ‘Parental Responsibility Order’ you have if your Orders were made since 1 July 2006.

The default position is a presumption of shared parental responsibility.



If your Order says the parents have “shared parental responsibility” then this means the parents must discuss and agree upon major long-term issues affecting the child.

Long term issues are defined by the Family Law Act 1975 to include changes to the child’s living arrangements that make it significantly more difficult for the child to spend time with a parent.

So if ‘shared parental responsibility’ applies, then if a parent intends to move elsewhere with a child, they should at least inform the other parent, but really, they should discuss and agree upon it.

Relocation – More Information

The sorts of things a Court wants to know, this issues and what a considers if they are deciding a case involving a parent who either has already moved away or who wants to move away, is explained in the information sheet How does a court decide Relocation cases if a parent moves away or wants to move away.

If you already have a Court Order or are getting a Court Order then you should also read our information sheet Court Orders & Relocation explained in full.

Our information sheet The other parent might Relocate: Do I need to do anything might also be helpful to you.

Relocation, Domestic & International Child Abduction: More Information

We also have the following pages providing additional information in relation to both Relocation of a Parent with a Child within Australia (domestically) and International Child Abduction:


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