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Digest No. 1843

Child and Family Protection Bill 2009 (2010 No 72-2)

Date of Introduction: 20 August 2009
Portfolio: Justice
Select Committee: Justice and Electoral
Date report presented: 10 August 2010
Second reading: 09 September 2010
Committal (uncompleted): 21 October 2010
Published: 08 February 2011byJohn McSoriley BA LL.B, Barrister,Legislative AnalystP: (04) 817-9626 (Ext. 9626)F: (04) 817-1250Public enquiries:Parliamentary Information Service: (04 817-9647) Caution: This Digest was prepared to assist consideration of the Bill by members of Parliament. It has no official status.Although every effort has been made to ensure accuracy, it should not be taken as a complete or authoritative guide to the Bill. Other sources should be consulted to determine the subsequent official status of the Bill.


The aim of the Bill as introduced is to amend the Domestic Violence Act 1995, the Care of Children Act 2004 and the Adoption Act 1955 and to make consequential amendments to the Summary Proceedings Act 1957, the Extradition Act 1999, and the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 1992. The Bill arises from the fact that "issues have been identified with [the] current legislation that restrict the ability of the State to protect the welfare and best interests of children and their families" [1]   .

The Bill as introduced is described in Bills Digest No 1713.

Main changes to the Bill

Protection of persons other than the applicant

The Select Committee has recommended that it be made clear that a protection order automatically continues for the benefit of a child of the applicant’s family, irrespective of their age, until that child stops ordinarily or periodically residing with the applicant, or the order sooner lapses or is discharged (Part 1, Clause 6, amending Section 16 of the Domestic Violence Act 1995 by inserting new subsection (1B))

Review of contact arrangements

The Select Committee has recommended that any lawyer appointed under the Care of Children Act 2004 to act for a child who in proceedings under the Domestic Violence Act 1995 is a child of the applicant’s family should have a right to attend review proceedings relating to contact arrangements. It is also recommended that any other persons whom the Family Court Judge permits to be present may also be present at the review (Part 1, Clause 13, inserting New Section 79A into the Domestic Violence Act 1995, new subsection (3), inserting new paragraphs (f) and (g)).

Allegations of violence made in proceedings relating to parenting orders

In relation to the procedure for dealing with day-to-day care or contact with a child where there is an allegation of “violence” by one party against the child or the other party to the proceedings, the Select Committee has recommended that the term “ allegation of violence “ be redefined so that the expression “means an allegation that that party has used violence against …” is replaced by the expression “means an allegation that that party has physically or sexually abused …” (Part 2, Clause 22, amending Section 58 of the Care of Children Act 2004, amending the definition of “allegation of violence”).

Inducing by fraud, duress, undue influence etc. to consent to an adoption

The Bill creates an offence of inducing another person by fraud, duress, undue influence, or other improper means to consent to an adoption.

The Select Committee has recommended that proceedings mat be brought in respect of this offence against a body corporate or a corporation sole incorporated under the laws of New Zealand (Part 3, Clause 32, inserting New Section 27C into the Adoption Act 1955, amending subsection (2)(a) by inserting new subparagraph (iv)).

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  1. Child and Family Protection Bill, 2009 No 72-1, Explanatory note, General policy statement, p. 1.   [back]