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Wednesday, 19 October 1983
Page: 1973

Mr LIONEL BOWEN (Minister for Trade)(8.06) —Again, whilst I am sympathetic to the intention-as a member of the Joint Select Committee on the Family Law Act I am well aware of the situation-in practice it will mean that once an order is made there will not be too much interest in altering it. With hindsight the Government feels that this amendment would encourage an extra application where leave is required. The Government opposes it on the basis that it feels that it would result in further work and delay because the parties would have to seek leave. I understand what the honourable member for Dundas (Mr Ruddock) said. He feels this would be a bit of an obstacle which ought to be placed there to prevent people making application. The Court, in dealing with any application, would obviously deal with it in a fashion that would clearly indicate to the parties concerned that it was final and that there would be no further point in seeking leave or any variation. What the Committee had in mind was to give some stability, as the honourable member said, to an order that is made. It felt that it would be necessary to get leave to try to vary it. In practice, if the application for variation is refused that negates the position and protects stability.