Thursday, April 24, 2008

Australia Child Custody & Relocation Problems

Australian child custody law presumes that it is in the best interests of the child for each of the child’s parents to have equal shared parental responsibility. (Australia’s Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006).

This presumption has reportedly created significant damage.

Judge Graham Mullane has reported to the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts that recent research by the Institute of Family Studies has shown that shared parenting has increased substantially in Australia but that the effect of many of these arrangements has been to subject infants or very young children to a pattern of separation from their primary care giver that may be seriously damaging to the child.

Many of the parents’ relationships are poor and they have no capacity to co-parent. For many children, the arrangement involves a high level of inconsistency and instability, and repeated exposure to parental conflict.

Moreover I can certainly attest to the fact that the 2006 law has made child relocation cases very much harder to win in Australia -- or, depending on your point of view, much easier to defeat -- which has caused devastating results in some cases.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Korean Adultery Law

Adultery is a crime in Korea punishable by up to two years in jail. Now Ok So-Ri, a famous Korean actress who has been indicted for adultery, has petitioned Korea’s Constitutional Court to invalidate the 1953 law that criminalizes such conduct.

In her complaint, her attorneys have argued that, "The adultery law constitutes a serious breach of the individual's rights to make decisions concerning sex and privacy under the constitution. Adultery cases must be handled in civil courts, not in criminal courts."

However, although the legislation has been challenged before -- complaints were filed in 1990, 1993 and 2001 – the Constitutional Court has rejected all prior petitions on the grounds that social morality would be weakened.

Today, it is rare for people to be jailed but that does not stop thousands of angry spouses from filing criminal complaints each year.The danger that the law creates is illustrated by Ok So-Ri’s own case.
The issue began when her business partner – not her husband – accused her in the course of a business dispute of having committed adultery with a famous chef. She then went into hiding and when she emerged she denied the affair with the chef but admitted an affair with another man. Her husband then charged her with adultery.

Let us hope that the Constitutional Court corrects the problem.