COVID-19

As per the Government’s announcement on 17 August 2021, all of New Zealand has returned to a Level 4 lockdown.

How am I currently operating

My team and I will continue to operate through the lockdown. We are well set up and adjusted to working remotely. For the most part it is business as usual. However, face-to-face meetings are now being conducted over Zoom or phone conferences.

There will be some situations, such as swearing an affidavit or certifying a settlement agreement, where it may not be possible to do remotely.

The Ministry of Justice had advised the Family Court will continue to operate through all pandemic alert levels but on a reduced capacity, dealing with priority proceedings. Priority proceedings are those relating to safety or liberty, such as protection orders or urgent without notice applications.  . Cases that are not priority proceedings will be rescheduled to the next available date.For more information, read the court protocols here – https://www.courtsofnz.govt.nz/publications/announcements/covid-19/court-protocols/district-court/

Useful resources

The uncertainty during this period will be overwhelming for many people. If you are in need of support, please contact the below helplines.

Mental Health

  • 1737 – Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor.
  • Lifeline – 0800 543 354 or free text 4357 (HELP)
  • Youthline – 0800 376 633 or free text 234
  • Samaritans – 0800 726 666

Domestic Violence

Relevant Articles

Parenting in lockdown

Co-parenting lessons learned from previous lockdowns

Three new community cases of Covid-19 were announced yesterday. Auckland is now back at alert level 3, while the rest of the country has been elevated to level 2.

Navigating a lockdown as a separated parent raises some significant challenges. However, there are some steps you can take to make this time easier for you and your children.

Ex-Files: Can I stop my ex-husband from taking my son to see the All Blacks amid Covid?

Whether a child travels to Auckland is a guardianship issue to be decided between both parents. The top priority in any guardianship decision is what is in the child’s best interests. A challenge of co-parenting is that you may not agree with your ex-husband about what is in your children’s best interests.

Trans-Tasman parenting during Covid-19

For parents living in different countries, Covid-19 has made a challenging situation even more difficult. The virus has put a halt on travel for most parents and their children living apart. However, if the children are dual citizens, they are technically entitled to travel to both Australia and New Zealand.

Worker made redundant because of covid-19

Can my ex take a share of my redundancy compensation?

The law states that all relationship property will be divided 50/50 at the end of a relationship longer than 3 years. Whether your partner is entitled to share in your redundancy payment will depend on whether your separation or the redundancy occurred first.

COVID-19: Will New Zealand’s divorce rate increase after lockdown?

New Zealand ranks 25th in the world for divorce rates according to a new study – but this could change after COVID-19. In this article I discuss why life after lockdown could see a rise in couples separating.

The Ex-Files: We can’t agree whether to send the kids back to school

As New Zealand moves through the COVID-19 alert levels, many new challenges are arising for parents. Whether to send a child back to school will be a hurdle for many people trying to co-parent after separation. This article explores how parents can navigate this unique challenge.

The impacts of coronavirus on family law

The effects of coronavirus are already being felt around the world and not just by people who are unwell.  Most industries are affected in some way and people are having to adapt. I am starting to see an impact on family law too.

Shared Care and COVID-19

The situation around COVID-19 has been fast evolving. The 4 category alert system was just announced over the weekend and New Zealand has entered a full lock down. This has a significant effect on existing parenting arrangements.

Approaching your relationship property settlement amongst the COVID-19

The effects of coronavirus are already being felt around the world. The impacts of coronavirus have been particularly relevant in relationship property settlements, particularly with the valuation of assets.

COVID-19: Mother distraught teenage daughter in lockdown with father who faced illegal drugs and gun charges

A distraught mother believes the co-parenting guidelines from the Principal Family Court judge, Jacquelyn Moran, during the Covid-19 lockdown- are vague and should be considered case by case. In this article, I discuss with Carolyne Meng-Yee why shared care arrangements are complicated by the Alert Level 4 lockdown.

Tips and tools for family issues during COVID-19 lockdown

The era of COVID-19 will see families facing a myriad of issues. Families may face problems regarding parenting arrangements, fluctuating asset valuations, property settlement occurring during lockdown and domestic violence. In this article, I provide some tips and tools for navigating these difficult problems.

How to progress shared parenting during the lockdown

This is a very difficult situation that the lockdown has caused for many parents. In this article, I explore the options available to keep your matter moving.

COVID-19 | What you need to know.Click here.