This website is for use by legal professionals (lawyers and law practices) only. If the information is used incorrectly, you could risk losing money or your legal rights. If you are a member of the public looking for free advice about your legal problems please visit legalaid.vic.gov.au, or contact our Legal Help advice line on 1300 792 387, Monday to Friday from 8 am to 6 pm. 

If you decide to use or rely on the information or make decisions based on the information in this website (which VLA does not recommend) VLA is not liable to you or any third party in any way for any loss, damage, costs or expenses you or they may suffer or incur as a result.

References for best interests of the child

Information for staff about the best interests of the child.

The Law Handbook

Fitzroy Legal Service’s Law Handbook has information about the best interests of the child.

See Parental responsibility for children(opens in a new window).

VLA Professional support — Family law practice resources

The Professional support team have collated a page of resources to assist with family law practice. The page links to latest news, case notes and other relevant materials. The 'Related resources' section links to the latest edition of the 'Best practice guidelines for lawyers doing family law work'.

See:

For a list of parenting order precedent documents see Practice resources—Family law resources—Precedent orders(opens in a new window).

Case summaries

For summaries of key family law cases see: Family case notes(opens in a new window).

Family law publications

The following publications may be useful:

  • How to run your family law case
  • Airport watch list order
  • Contravention kit

See Practice resources—Family law resources—Family law publications(opens in a new window).

Note: These resources are only available to staff at Victoria Legal Aid.

The library has shortlisted some key resources for family law. These include loose-leaf services journals and key texts.

See Library and research tools—Family law research links(opens in a new window).

Note: These resources are only available to staff at Victoria Legal Aid.

LexisNexis Practical Guidance: Family law

This resource has checklists and commentary about various family law matters.

See LexisNexis Practical guidance—Family law(opens in a new window).

Note: This resource is only available to staff at Victoria Legal Aid.

Federal Circuit and Family Court

The courts has a series of YouTube videos that are designed to assist people who are representing themselves in court. The video explains how to prepare for court, what to bring, what the court layout looks like and court etiquette. There is also a video that explains how to apply for divorce and how to serve divorce papers.

One video explains how to use the court's e-lodgement system.

See Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia—Official YouTube account(opens in a new window)

This specialist community legal service can assist LGBTIQ+ clients across Victoria with legal issues including discrimination, unfair dismissal, change of name/gender, Centrelink and NDIS appeals, criminal law, family violence and evictions.

See LGBTIQ Legal Service(opens in a new window).

Court network

This voluntary, non-legal service provides support, information and referral for people who are involved in the court system. They have an online referral service so that people can make a booking before they attend court to get some help from a volunteer.

See Court Network(opens in a new window).

The service also provides a booklet for people who are representing themselves at a final hearing in the Family Law Courts.

  • 'Resource booklet for people attending a final hearing in the Family Law Courts without a lawyer'

See Court Network—Brochures(opens in a new window).

Australian Institute of Family Studies

An institute report, commissioned by the Commonwealth Attorney General, evaluates the way that children and parents have been affected by the changes to parenting under the 2006 shared care reforms. The report was published on 27 November 2009.

See Australian Institute of Family Studies—The Evaluation of the 2006 Family Law Reforms(opens in a new window).

Updated