Independent children’s lawyer (ICL)
An independent children’s lawyer (ICL) may be appointed by the court of its own initiative or on the application of any person (including the child).
The role of the ICL is set out in section 68LA of the Family Law Act which provides (among other things) that an ICL:
- must form an independent view of the best interests of the child;
- must act in those interests;
- is not the child’s legal representative;
- is not obliged to act on the child’s instructions;
- must act impartially;
- must ensure that any views expressed by the child in relation to the matters to which the proceedings relate are fully put before the court;
- must endeavour to minimise the trauma to the child associated with proceedings; and
- must facilitate an agreed resolution.