Annie Brown is 30 years old and has three children to 3 different fathers.
Tyler James Wakefield (born 3 May
1996) and his father is Tyler Wakefield Senior. Tyler has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
Jessica June Brown (born 6 July
1998). Annie believes that Jessica’s father is Jake Brown, her former partner. Annie and Jake were together in a relationship for 18
months. Jake is the named father on the birth certificate but Annie is not 100% certain that he is in fact the father. This is because
she had a one night stand with a work colleague, Barney Penfold around the time that she fell pregnant with Jessica. Barney has always
expressed a particular interest in Jessica’s life.
Terry Craig Chung (born 12 December 2009). Terry is the child of Dr Tsu Chung, a heart
Annie and Tsu are currently living together although it has always been a rocky relationship. Annie is considering leaving the
relationship because she often feels threatened by Tsu. Tsu comes from Bangkok and all of his family still live there. Tsu often says that
he would like to set up a private surgery in Bangkok and move the family there permanently. Tsu’s family practise Sikhism.
Annie with a set income each week for her and the three children. Sometimes Annie says that this is not enough to pay all the bills and
when she needs more Tsu refuses.
Tyler and Jessica both attend St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba Queensland. Tsu currently pays for all of
their education costs even though he does not agree with the choice of religious affiliation. Annie knows that if she leaves the
relationship, she will be unable to pay for the school fees on her own as she only works part-time as a teacher’s aide. The biological
fathers refuse to contribute. Annie also recognises that if she leaves Tsu, he has no obligation to pay for the school fees because the
children are not Tsu’s biological children.
Tyler’s significant behavioural difficulties recently caused him to physically lash out
at Annie giving her a black eye. Annie did not report this to the police because she was worried that Tyler would be removed from her care
and placed with the father, Tyler Wakefield Senior. Annie has previously refused him to spend time with Tyler because the father is a
kangaroo shooter and she worries about Tyler’s safety. The father also has a history of drug abuse. Although Annie dabbles in
prescription medication provided by Dr Chung she doesn’t believe that she is addicted.
Tyler has been asking to live with his father.
There are no orders in place but the father has mentioned mediation.
Jessica is extremely bright. Annie however believes that something
has happened to Jessica. Jessica is very pretty. Lately Jessica has been hiding in her bedroom. Annie says Tsu has not been able to hug
Jessica without her pushing him away or glaring at him.
The youngest child, Terry is the apple of Tsu’s eye because he is 4 years
old and his only male heir.
Tsu holds Terry’s passport in a safe at work.
Tsu has mentioned that he is keen for Terry to have his name
changed to Master Tsu which would provide him with authority within his family in Bangkok and superiority within their religion. Annie has
refused but Tsu said she cannot stop him because he is the father and she has no power.
Finally, Annie tells you that her face book page
has also been hacked into and changed. There have been comments made that allege that she is mentally unwell. Annie says that she ha
post natal depression in the past.
Lately Annie has been feeling like self-harming because she is so distressed about her situation but
knows that if she does anything, that she may lose the children and her life.
With reference to the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) and other
sources what is your advice to Annie? Advise of issues including but not limited to:
Parental responsibility – long-term decision
Change of Name;
Allegations of abuselfamily violence;
Collaborative practices and
appropriate referrals to external support providers;
In addition to the issues to determine a parenting order, you should consider your own
duties as her lawyer.
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