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FAMILY LAW AMENDMENT BILL 1983

The Senate, according to Order, resolved itself into Committee for the further consideration of the Bill.

In the Committee

Consideration resumed of Clause 20 and of the amendment moved thereto by Senator Harradine, viz: Page 14, at end of clause, add the following word and paragraph: ''and (d) by adding at the end thereof the following sub-sections: '(4) Subject to this section, proceedings for dissolution of a marriage shall not be instituted within 3 years after the date of the marriage except by leave of the Court.

'(5) The Court shall grant leave under this section where refusal to grant that leave would impose severe hardship on the applicant.

'(6) In determining an application for leave to institute proceedings under this section, the Court shall have regard to the interests of any children of the marriage and to the question of whether there is any reasonable likelihood of a reconciliation between the parties before the expiration of a period of 3 years after the date of the marriage.'.''.

Question-That the words proposed to be added be added-put and negatived.

Senator Harradine moved a further amendment, viz: Page 14, leave out the clause, insert the following new clause: Dissolution of marriage ''20. Section 48 of the Principal Act is repealed and the following section is substituted: '48. (1) An application under this Act by a party to a marriage for a decree of dissolution of the marriage shall be based on the fact that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.

'(2) In a proceeding instituted by such an application, the fact that the marriage has broken down irretrievably shall be held to have been established if, and only if, it is proved to the reasonable satisfaction of the Court that- (a) the other party to the marriage has behaved in such a way that the applicant cannot reasonably be expected to live with that party;

(b) since the marriage the other party to the marriage has committed continuing adultery;

(c) the other party to the marriage has wilfully deserted the applicant and left the applicant so deserted for a period of 2 years or more; or

(d) the parties to the marriage have separated and thereafter have lived separately and apart for a continuous period of not less than 2 years immediately preceding the date of the application and there is no reasonable likelihood of cohabitation being resumed, provided that the Court is satisfied that, in all the circumstances, it is not harsh and oppressive to either party or contrary to public policy to grant the relief sought.'.''.

Debate ensued.

Ordered-That the Chairman of Committees (Senator Hamer) report progress and ask leave to sit again.

The Acting Deputy-President (Senator Colston) resumed the Chair; and Senator Hamer reported that the Committee had considered the Bill, made progress, and asked for leave to sit again.

Ordered-That the Committee have leave to sit again at a later hour of the day.