Updates to Queensland Border Restrictions and the affect on families with shared parenting arrangements

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about many changes to the way we do things. The legal landscape in particular has had a number of substantial changes come into effect - some temporary, and some permanent - with many more still likely to come. One of the major changes has been the Queensland border restrictions, and that of the other states.

As of 7 August, the Queensland Government has released Border Restrictions Direction (No.11) in response to the state government's decision to close the borders to New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory residents in order to combat the further spread of Covid-19.

This new Queensland Border Restriction: Border Restrictions Direction (No.11) comes into place at 1.00am on Saturday 8 August, 2020, superseding Queensland's Border Restrictions Direction No.10.

This directive requires people from these states seeking entry into Queensland for a court appearance to provide evidence of a court order, as well as confirmation that they are to attend court in person, before they are allowed into Queensland. This will be of particular interest to those with shared parenting agreements where one parent lives in either of these states, as they will now need to provide official court documents to be permitted into Queensland.

The QLS Proctor shares details of the direction in more detail:

"The direction issued by Queensland Health and released today includes a requirement of anyone from a declared COVID-19 ‘hotspot’ to provide court-issued documentation to cross the state’s border."

“Generally people who have been in declared COVID-19 hotspots cannot enter Queensland, but there are certain exemptions relevant to the legal profession and their clients,” the direction says.

Those exemptions include:

  • if the person is a Queensland resident
  • if the person is moving to Queensland as a new resident
  • if the person is a border zone resident who is a Queensland resident
  • to comply with an order to attend a court or tribunal or to give effect to orders of a court or tribunal, and they must provide evidence of a court order and confirmation from the court that they are to attend in person
  • to fulfil a legal obligation relating to shared parenting or child contact, including as part of an order or arrangement under the Child Protection Act 1999, and they must provide evidence of a court order or a legal agreement, or
  • to assist with or participate in a state or Commonwealth law enforcement investigation or other action at the request or direction of a state or Commonwealth department or law enforcement agency."

Need Assistance understanding how Queensland Border Restrictions Affect You?

For information or clarification on how this may affect your upcoming family law matter, or your current shared parenting agreement, please contact our team at Pullos Lawyers at our Gold Coast office on (07) 5526 3646 or our Brisbane office on (07) 3144 1641 We are well versed in all areas of family law including divorce law, children's issues, and more. We are closely following the constantly evolving effects Covid-19 is having on legislation and family matters in Queensland, and would be happy to assist.