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Parenting coordinators: What are they, and should I use one?

If you have parenting proceedings before the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia, you may have heard the phrase ‘parenting coordinator’. Parenting coordinators are independent specialists who assist parents to navigate their co-parenting relationship – through education, coaching and dispute resolution.


Parenting coordinators can be engaged proactively by parents or appointed by Court order at any stage of the Court process – or even before proceedings have commenced. While parenting coordinators are not a substitute for the Court, they can assist parties to improve their communication and make decisions together – helping to avoid costly litigation over minor disagreements.


Parenting coordinators will prioritise the best interests of the child(ren), working with the parents to negotiate and resolve matters peacefully. They can assist with the practical implementation of orders (or parenting plans), particularly if a dispute arises over the interpretation of a specific clause or a joint decision to be made. The parenting coordinator will work with both parents to improve individual conflict resolution skills and promote a positive co-parenting relationship. A parenting coordinator can be appointed for any length of time, and (typically) the cost is shared between the parties.


If you have further questions about the process of separation, contact our expert team at Richardson Murray for a free initial consultation.