New guidance on guardianship forms for Queensland children
Queensland is introducing a new guidance for guardianship applications, after a wave of legal battles over the issue.
The Queensland government says the changes will make guardianship less stressful for children.
Guardianship is a special form of government-supervised parenting that gives a parent the authority to protect a child’s welfare.
It is usually used when the child is young and there are no other options.
The changes to the application form will also make it clearer who can apply and when.
It will not make guardians’ applications mandatory and will not change the way guardians are chosen, the Queensland Government says.
Queensland’s new guidance on guardian applications will help ensure a child is well cared for in the community.
Photo: Supplied Guardian application forms can also be used in cases where a child has been physically abused, or when a child needs help caring for someone else.
Guardianships are not mandatory for all children in Queensland, but in the past, Queensland has used a form to protect children who are not currently in care.
A child’s guardianship is determined by the court, but the court will determine who has custody of the child.
Since the late 1990s, there have been many legal battles involving the guardianship form, with the Government arguing that it was unnecessary for children in care to apply for guardianships.
The changes will allow Queensland to ensure that all children have the opportunity to get a guardianship and protect their welfare, the Government says in a statement.
“It is not necessary for a child to be in care for guardians to apply and it is not required that they be a Queensland resident or resident of Queensland to apply,” the statement says.
“Guardians may also be able to apply through the Department of Social Services, and in the case of children in foster care, a child can also apply if the child has had the court order them to.”
The changes also provide a way for the State Government to ensure there is a uniform application process and ensure children in a situation where a guardians’ application has been refused are not discriminated against.
“The State Government says it is still reviewing the changes and has yet to make a final decision.