Broken Bonds: One of hundreds and thousands of untold Stories of the Family Court Injustice in New Zealand

The story is based on True events. The names and details of the people used / dates / location in this article are fictitious to protect the parties’ privacy.

New Zealand Family Court was criticized as being monocultural and not fit for purpose The Family Court proceedings are perceived as daunting, lengthy, and expensive for many families. Many parents reported that they are treated unfairly and like criminals in the family court system. 

We have personally known many parents who have chosen to end their lives, because they haven’t had any support or guidance through the complex process of separation and dealing with the Family Court. Many have experienced severe mental health strain due to their involvement in the Family Court proceedings and their struggle to access to their children. Many parents we’ve known ended their lives or abandoned their children after despair.   

In 2008, a Principal Family Court Judge had called for more support and help for families going through the family court system . Also in 2004, another Judge had attacked the Family laws  which tended to alienate the parents, generally fathers, who had lost custody and the judge had highlighted that the family laws lack in sophistication. 

Additionally, the 2018/2019 findings of the independent panel who examined the 2014 changes of the family court were very concerning. First, the panel chairperson Ms. Noonan had called for an urgent change in the family court system and laws, also she mentioned that the current family court system “is not fit for purpose”, she also said that the same issues had been raised in 1987 and she was shocked that so little had changed and she heard from many people that they felt being treated as criminals in the family court. 

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Mark’s Story

The harrowing story of Mark exemplifies the heartbreaking realities faced by many parents within the New Zealand Family Court system.

In May 2022, Mark made the difficult decision to separate from his partner and left the family home to avoid further conflict. Subsequently, Mark was served with a without-notice temporary protection order (without hearing his side of the story) by a family court bailiff. This protection order application was unjustly based on false and exaggerated allegations that would later be proven by Mark.

The mother, through a vicious lawyer, deliberately chose not to file an application for an interim parenting order, so Mark is able to have contact with his children safely in supervised contact. Instead, she only filed a without-notice application for a protection order, which was granted on 10 May 2022. This deliberate omission aimed to disrupt Mark’s contact with his children, knowing that it would be grossly impacted without a parenting order. The mother and her lawyer were aware of Section 86 of the Family Violence Act 2018, which mandates that if a protection order is granted, it applies for the benefit of any child of the applicant’s family. So, these children and the father were banned from having contact with each other.

They did not want Mark to have quick access to his children; instead, they wanted Mark to struggle through the family court to get access to his children, and disgustingly, they achieved this. Despite having legal representation at the time she initiated the protection order application, the mother’s lawyer failed to file for a parenting order requesting dad to undergo supervised contact with his children. Her lawyer should have advised her to initiate a parenting order application along with the protection order application. This would have allowed the same judge who dealt with the protection order to make an order for supervised contact between Mark and his children. The judge who granted the protection order on the without-notice track also had the power to make a parenting order for Mark to undergo supervised contact with his children but failed to do so.

Why did the Judge who dealt with the protection order not make an order for Mark to undergo supervised contact with his children pending the hearing?

If the mother’s lawyer had filed a parenting order application along with the protection order, or if the judge had exercised his power, Mark and his children wouldn’t have had to wait 10 months for contact.

Following the issuance of the without-notice protection order, Mark found an incompetent legal aid lawyer who did not consider that his contact with his children is urgent, and with no urgency, the lawyer filed for a parenting order in September 2022 so Mark can have access to his children, three months after the issuance of the protection order. Often a lawyer of child is appointed in such circumstances, which took over 4 months to be done, and the lawyer of the child did not attempt to push for an interim contact between Mark and his children. The Lawyer of the child waited until a week before the court hearing and wanted to meet the children; however, the mother has refused to do so, and the FC Judge just swept it under the carpet without any consequences for her wrongdoings. Mark’s lawyer refused to file the parenting order on the urgent/without-notice track but instead filed it on the on-notice standard track (process 3-6 months), claiming Mark’s contact with his children was not urgent from the court’s perspective. Mark had to wait for months and months for the parenting order to be dealt with and put before a Judge.

Finally, at a hearing happened in August 2023, the judge made an order that Mark to have unsupervised contact with his children (giving both parents to make this decision, which is ridiculous considering the mother’s misconduct) and dismissed the protection order.

Yet the mother’s inappropriate actions and the involved lawyers and Judges faced no repercussions. I am not being negative but believe it or not, this mother she will keep wanting to destroy the dad’s relationship with their father and she will do maliciously using the family court system, as many parents are able to do so.

The temporary protection order tragically severed Mark’s bond with his 16-month-old baby and his 7-year-old for a grueling 10 months. Mark was diagnosed with depression, anxiety, and suffered serious mental health issues, impacting his career, job, life, and most importantly, his relationship with his children. Despite baseless allegations, Mark was effectively barred from any contact with his children during this agonizing period. The toll this took on Mark, as well as his children, cannot be overstated.

The dismissal of the protection order in August 2023 was a belated victory for Mark, yet the damage inflicted over those 10 months is immeasurable. Mark’s story is but one of countless others marred by the flawed and often unjust practices within the Family Court. The sheer magnitude of the suffering endured by parents like Mark demands urgent attention and reform.

Indeed, the details of Mark’s ordeal could fill multiple volumes, each chapter revealing the systemic failures and injustices perpetuated by New Zealand Family Court lawyers and judges. From the initial issuance of the protection order to the prolonged denial of parental rights, every aspect of Mark’s case serves as a stark indictment of a system in dire need of overhaul. Mark’s resilience in the face of such adversity is commendable, but his story serves as a poignant reminder of the urgent need for change.

No parent should be forced to endure the anguish and despair inflicted by a system meant to protect and uphold the best interests of families. As Mark’s case illustrates, the Family Court’s shortcomings exact a heavy toll not only on parents but also on innocent children caught in the crossfire.

Mark’s story must serve as a catalyst for action, sparking a renewed commitment to reforming the Family Court and ensuring that justice and fairness prevail for all families. It is incumbent upon us to heed his plight and work tirelessly towards a system that truly serves the needs of families in crisis.

  • No perjury in New Zealand Family Court. False allegations are allowed and facilitated by Judges and Lawyer in the family court.
  • The system is open for misuse and abuse – A one size fits all system created to destory families.
  • Parental alienation is facilitated and promoted by the Family Court Judges and Lawyers.
  • The systemic delays are just unbelievable.
  • The Crown servants should face repercussions for their wrongdoings.

This is not a one-off story; hundreds and thousands of parents go through the same process every day in New Zealand, the vast majority impacted are fathers but also some mums. The Family Court system is a dysfunctional broken system that is in dire need of an overhaul. And we wonder why the suicide rates and mental health diagnoses are high in New Zealand.

The way Mark was treated is inhuman and extremely traumatic. The resultant damage of such treatment is irreparable. Those Judges and Lawyers should be held accountable and should be charged with negligence of their duty of care.

This happens very often in the New Zealand Family Court. Tell me, is this in the best interests of the children involved in this case or the father?

New Zealand is a first world country? Waiting for 10 months to be heard is absolutely bizarre and breach of people’s natural justice.

Can we please share it ?? New Zealand people have no idea whats happening in New Zealand Family Court.



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Forever Silented

I have been through the same, and have not seen my daughter no for 12 months. I have been through it all, ” Parasites that what they are, all of them. Judges, Lawyers, LFC’s, Police.
Even your own lawyer is not guilty. New Zealand Family is a
” Court of Abuse. And not fit for the Purpose. Child Abuse and Parental alianation its main Goals.


OMG i cannot believe how they treat parents. This is disgusting.


This hall of shame needs to be ABOLISHED! Nasty games

FC Hater

A crazy system destroys parents relationships with their whānau. Shut it down. This mother and the lawyer and the judge MUST be held accountable.

Family Court suxs

Hi all
Iv been in family Court for 11 years ,had supervised contact for 10 years we have 2 kids boy and a girl,all started with false allegations that touch my daughter which I got clear of ,but someone did touch my daughter twice and none of the lawyers did anything even till this day 🙄, haven’t seen my daughter in 6 years ,but still see our son supervised contact for 10 years ,I can’t give up on them and never will

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