It is no news alert that we are currently in the midst of a pandemic like no other. Domestic boarders have been shut, social distancing rules are being enforced and restrictions have been put on who can visit us. People are working and schooling from home. Society as we knew it no longer exists.
What does this mean if you have parenting orders in place? The answer to this question does depend on some of your own personal circumstances but essentially it is business as usual. If you can comply with the orders, the Family Court has made it clear that you need to. The fact that we are in the current situation because of COVID-19 does not mean that, that is an of itself an excuse for not complying. However, you may be unable to comply.
You may be in a situation where your ex lives interstate and children won’t be able to spend time with them because of the travel restrictions currently in place. Or you or your children may have been exposed and are required to stay in isolation for a period of time. If this is the case you should look at other ways you can facilitate some time. Can you start video calls, phone calls or even emails between your children and their other parent? I know that this ‘may not be in the orders’, but when the orders were made, none of us (including Judges) expected to be faced with what we are currently dealing with.
If your children are unable to spend time with the other parent for whatever reason - now is not the time to say “no” because you can. Now is not the time to say “I am just following the orders”. Now is the time to show your children that you can be creative. That just because they can’t go to Mum or Dads doesn’t mean that they can’t spend time with them. Just as schooling has turned into home schooling – time with the other parent can change as well.