Director General, Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services v. Timothy John Corfield
In this recent Australian case, the writer represented the father with respect to setting aside an ex parte order his wife secured in Alberta compelling him to return the parties four children from Australia to Alberta. Briefly, the parties had been living both in Alberta and Australia after their marriage. Three of the children were born in Canada and one was born in Australia. It was an unstable relationship. The mother was an exotic dancer, and the father primarily cared for the children. We were successful in setting aside the ex parte Alberta Order for the return of the children before the Australian Hague hearing. The father was successful in opposing the Mother’s Hague application for the return of the children to Alberta. The key issues for the Australian Court were Habitual Residence and Acquiescence. The Australian Court found that both parents, had mutually agreed for financial reasons (the father could not work in Canada) that the father could indefinitely travel with the children to Australia. This had the effect of changing the habitual residence of the children from Alberta to Australia. In addition the Court also found that the mother acquiesced in allowing the children to remain with the father in Australia. Facebook posts by the mother and her family were very instrumental in providing evidence to support the father’s position.