B v. R and Separate Representative

127 FLR 438 (1995)

From our private database of 45,900+ case briefs, written and edited by humans—never with AI.

B v. R and Separate Representative

Family Court of Australia, Full Court
127 FLR 438 (1995)

Facts

C was a toddler whose mother (plaintiff) was an Aboriginal Australian and whose father (defendant) was a White Australian. The relationship between the mother and father was marred by domestic violence and alcohol abuse. The mother entered residential treatment for alcoholism while the father cared for C. Without the mother’s consent, the father and C moved to a different area away from the mother. At trial on the custody matter, C was represented by a separate representative, known in other jurisdictions as a guardian ad litem. The separate representative presented the testimony of an expert witness who testified about the disastrous practice of placing Aboriginal children in non-Aboriginal families, causing tremendous physical and emotional trauma to the children and community. At best, non-Aboriginal families were unable to give Aboriginal children the support they needed to cope with racism. At worst, non-Aboriginal families denigrated Aboriginal culture in an attempt to force Aboriginal children to assimilate. The expert concluded that Aboriginal children must be placed with Aboriginal families to prevent the trauma of the loss of Aboriginal identity and support of the Aboriginal community. The separate representative argued that the expert’s testimony was relevant to show the effects that C could suffer if she remained with her non-Aboriginal family. The trial court refused to admit the testimony, stating that the matter was the same as any custody dispute between two Australians and that the court would not involve itself in political controversies. The court placed C’s custody with the father, and the mother received visitation rights. The mother appealed, arguing, among other things, that the trial court wrongly excluded the expert witness’s testimony.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning ()

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 741,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.

    Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.

    Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee

Here's why 741,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 45,900 briefs, keyed to 984 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Access this case brief for FREE

With a 7-day free trial membership
Here's why 741,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
  • Reliable - written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students
  • The right length and amount of information - includes the facts, issue, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents
  • Access in your class - works on your mobile and tablet
  • 45,900 briefs - keyed to 984 casebooks
  • Uniform format for every case brief
  • Written in plain English - not in legalese and not just repeating the court's language
  • Massive library of related video lessons - and practice questions
  • Top-notch customer support

Access this case brief for FREE

With a 7-day free trial membership