Care of children law
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Care of children law

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The Care of Children Act 2004 (COCA) is an extremely important piece of legislation in family law. The purpose of this legislation is to promote the welfare of children, and to aid their development

The Care of Children Act 2004 (COCA) is an extremely important piece of legislation in family law. The purpose of this legislation is to promote the welfare of children, and to aid their development

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    Care of children law Care of children law Presentation Transcript

    • Care of Children Law
    • The Care of Children Act 2004 (COCA) is an extremely important piece of legislation in family law. The purpose of this legislation is to promote the welfare of children, and to aid their development. Although it covers many areas, one of its primary roles is to ensure that the care arrangements of children are sorted out. It is also very important in recognising children’s rights.
    • Sections 4, 5 and 6 of The Care of Children Act 2004 are paramount. Section 4 declares that the child’s best interests and welfare are paramount. This puts the welfare of children first in any parenting disputes, and means that the conduct of parents will only be considered where it impacts the welfare of the children involved.
    • Section 4 also ensures that any decisions made about the child (for example by the courts) are made in a timeframe relative to the child and their sense of time. Six months is obviously a very long period in a three year olds life, whereas in a 14 year olds life, six months does not seem as long.
    • Section 5 of the Act lays out a list of considerations the court must look at when determining what would be in the child’s best interests and welfare. Continuity in care is extremely important. This means that it is important for the child to have the same people look after him or her. Further to this, it is important that the child experiences continuity in family and culture.
    • Relationships between children and family members are very important and the Act states that these sorts of relationships must be both preserved and strengthened. This part of the Act is also strongly in favour of children being aware of who their parents are, as well as the culture of their parents.
    • The child’s identity must be preserved and strengthened also, and this includes aspects such as culture, language, and religion. Finally, this part of the Act is vital as it states the physical safety of the child must be protected at all times.
    • Section 6 of the Act is all about the child’s right to be heard and listened to, and for the child’s views to be taken into account, where a decision is being made that will affect them. No matter how old the child is, the child’s views must be obtained.
    • This is usually done through a lawyer for child. The lawyer for child is responsible for talking to the child and getting their thoughts or opinion on the matter. Even if the child is just a baby, the lawyer for child still must meet with the child.
    • Under The Care of Children Act 2004, ideally parents or guardians will make amicable decisions and will be cooperate in order to decide matters relating to the child. Where this is unable to occur, the legislation lays out the factors that the court must take into account when making decisions regarding children.
    • The Care of Children Act 2004 is used when there are disputes or disagreements between guardians relating to the child. It is also very important in protecting children where there is family violence occurring, or the child is at risk of harm. This statute also encourages use of alternative dispute resolution. This means attending counselling or mediation instead of going to court.
    • The Care of Children Act 2004 is all about the child, and getting the best outcome for the child or children involved. It covers a range of areas, but ultimately focuses on the welfare of the child or children at the heart of the dispute. Read more about the child law here: http://goarticles.com/article/Family-LawNew-Zealand/7999123