Can A Stepparent Legally Adopt A Child?

Can A Stepparent Legally Adopt A Child?

It is a common scenario that one of the parents who care for a child is not their birth parent but a stepparent. There may come a time, that having discussed the matter with their other parent, and the child, that they wish to legally adopt their step-child, and this is when their family lawyers are most likely going to be required to advise, and represent them, given that it can be a complex process.

The first thing that needs to be established is whether or not the stepparent who wishes to adopt their stepchild is actually eligible to do so. The legal requirement and eligibility rules relating to stepparent adoption are laid out in the Family Law Act of 1975.

Before a family court will even consider an application for stepparent adoption, there are three basic questions that must be answered.  The first and overriding requirement is that if the adoption takes place, it must be in the best interests of the child.

For anyone who has studied or encountered family law, they will have undoubtedly known that whenever a child is involved in any way in family court matters, all decisions will normally have this as the primary part of the consideration.

The second consideration is whether the child’s biological parent is no longer has any active role in their life. For example, they could have abandoned their family some years ago, or have chosen to live in another country without any contact with the child.


How Can My Choice Of Pool Fence Impact My Overall Garden Design?

How Can My Choice Of Pool Fence Impact My Overall Garden Design

Designing the right garden and yard space to suit your lifestyle can be difficult, but it’s certainly possible – especially if you work with a professional landscape designer. The first thing you need to consider is any large elements such as swimming pools or pool fencing that will influence your whole landscape design.

Different pool fencing styles are suited to different landscape designs. For example, glass pool fencing is probably most suited to open areas with a lot of hard surfaces and well manicured gardens. On the other hand, something like tubular metal pool fencing usually works best with gardens that benefit from being separated into sections.

With this in mind, let’s have a look at a few of the ways that the pool fence that you choose can influence the landscape design an expert such as
can produce.


Compensation Payouts If You Win A Medical Negligence Case Against Your Dentist

Compensation Payouts If You Win A Medical Negligence Case Against Your Dentist

It is the right of every patient to expect a duty of care from any medical professional, and that includes their favourite dentist. Should that dentist fail to show a duty of care to the patient, and it results in that patient suffering a loss, injury, or damage, then the patient has the right to sue that dentist or dental practice, for medical negligence.

Now that all sounds fine, but you should be aware that medical negligence is an extremely complex area of the law and being able to prove medical negligence can be a considerable challenge. Should you ever need to sue, then it is certainly advisable that you seek legal guidance and representation.

Whilst you may have an existing commercial lawyer from who represents you, for medical negligence cases it is recommended that you acquire a lawyer who is versed in that sort of case. For a start, they will consult with you to ascertain whether not you have grounds to bring a medical negligence case at all, and if you do, what the chances are of it succeeding.


How Professional Website Design Can Boost The Rankings And Revenue Of Your Life Coaching Business

How Professional Website Design Can Boost The Rankings And Revenue Of Your Life Coaching Business

If your life coaching business has a website that seems to contribute nothing, you are missing out on an opportunity to expand your business with the help of Google. A website can play a huge role in how well a business ranks on Google, and as the professional web designers at will advise you, a poor design can have the opposite effect.

The mistake which many business owners make is that they believe that the appearance of their website is all-important, to the detriment of everything else. Whilst you obviously want your website to look as good as it can, focussing on that and ploughing all your resources into the visual elements of your website, could bring no rewards whatsoever.

One thing to know is that Google cannot assess how good or bad a website looks. In other words, Google’s bot do not see your high-definition images, your colourful graphics and what is being spoken about on any videos. However, within the coding of your website there will be indicators as to what each page, and the website as a whole, is about.

You could actually have a website that is not particularly appealing visually, but it could still outrank one which does, simply because the structure and the programming used to create it is better optimised for SEO.


5 Myths About Divorce You Must Not Believe

5 Myths About Divorce You Must Not Believe

Whenever family lawyers meet with a client there will be many things they need to discuss. There is obviously the divorce and no doubt the client will have several questions which they need to ask. In addition, the divorce lawyer may have to dismiss many of the assumptions and misunderstandings that their client may have about the whole process.

Some of this will understandably be due to the fact that most clients are not experts on divorce law, otherwise, they would be sitting on the opposite side of the table. In addition, there can undoubtedly be elements of the client’s beliefs about divorce that have sprung up due to some of the many myths that surround it.

Many of these myths get passed from friend to friend and relative to relative, no doubt in a spirit of trying to help, but they actually achieve the opposite by sowing the seeds of doubt and worry. Another reason myths can occur is due to the media that we see on our television and online. These can include movies that use dramatic license to create legal and courtroom scenarios that bear little relationship to the real thing.

One point about movies is that we get many of them from Hollywood which being in the USA will base their storylines on American law and the legal system as it applies to divorce there. The differences between how divorce is enacted in the USA and Australia are significant, so again this can lead to confusion and concern thinking that what happens in a movie is going to happen here.

So, in order to try to eliminate some of the concerns people have about divorce, we are going to dispel 5 of the most common myths about divorce in Australia.


What Does Annulment Of A Marriage Mean

What Does Annulment Of A Marriage Mean

When some people hear that a marriage has been annulled, some of them simply assume that it is a fancy word for divorce and means exactly the same. However, were you to approach a divorce lawyer at to ask them to help you get your marriage annulled, the process, legalities, and criteria surrounding it would be completely different from those that apply to a divorce.

For a start whilst the legal framework that applies to both divorce and annulment is laid out within the Family Law Act of 1975, if you were to look them up in the Act, you would find several significant differences.

For a start, the legal document that certifies that a marriage has been annulled is called a Decree of Nullity. What that decree will state is that the marriage in question did not exist legally and regardless of whether a bride walked down the aisle in a white dress, a wedding service took place, and confetti was thrown, the marriage is void, and in the eyes of the law, never existed.

To some, this might sound confusing given that there may even have been officials present conducting the marriage, but the point here is that even though they may have genuinely believed that they were conducting a legitimate marriage ceremony, there were one or more reasons why it was not actually a legal marriage.


Top 3 Reasons You Will Love Having A Concrete Pool

Top 3 Reasons You Will Love Having A Concrete Pool

If the idea of having a concrete pool by on your property is one that you are currently debating either within your own mind or with your family, then you may have been trying to think of the positive reasons why you should justify going ahead with it.

We hope you have thought of several of those reasons, but just to make sure, and possibly to highlight some you may not yet have considered, then here are 3 of the top ones which are the benefits of having a concrete pool on your property.

You Have an Almost Unlimited Choice of Designs

Many people have this concept that a concrete pool at home is going to be the same boring rectangular shape as the pool you see at the Olympics. Whilst it can be if you so wish, we hope you want to be more creative than that. In fact, the only limits on the shape, size, and design of your concrete pool are your budget and the area which is available for it to be installed in.

Otherwise, you have a free choice as to how you want your concrete pool to look both in terms of the shape and with regard to the tiling and other aesthetics such as the decking and the landscaping around it.

This means that not only do have a functional swimming pool that you and your family can enjoy swimming in, but you can also have an eye-catching feature on your property depending on how artistic you decide to go with the tiles and other features of the pool.

This can include water features, a slide, and a spa for example, and do not forget there is still the possibility of continuing with your creativity when it comes to the landscape design of the other areas on the outside of your property such as your garden.


5 Ways You Can Benefit From Axe Throwing

5 Ways You Can Benefit From Axe Throwing

If you have never heard of axe throwing, then you may be surprised to learn it is a hugely popular pastime, and a highly competitive sport. Axe throwing centres are fast becoming the place to go for an enjoyable get-together and chance to show your friends and family just how accurate your axe throwing skills are.

The concept is extremely simple in that there is a wooden target with concentric circles, and you score more points the closer your axe is to the centre when you throw.  Think of it a bit like darts, but with more street cred. There are many benefits to axe throwing, and to give you some incentive to give it a go, here are 5 of them.

#1 Physical Exercise.

It might not be on the same level as marathon running, but axe throwing does take a reasonable degree of physical exertion. The axes have weight to them with the smaller ones weighing around 800 grammes, and the larger ones used in some competitions weighing up to 1.5 kilograms.

Add to that the fact that you have to pull your arm back in order to then throw your axe, you will soon appreciate that there is a reasonable degree of physical effort required. What’s certain is that after you have thrown that axe several times, you will have burnt off plenty of calories.


Legally Using Self Defence Against Home Intruders

Legally Using Self Defence Against Home Intruders

One area of the law which criminal lawyers at are often asked their advice on is self-defence, and in particular, whether or not it is legal to use self defence against someone who has broken into your home. As is often the case when it comes to criminal law, the answer a criminal lawyer might give you is, ‘It depends’.

That might not seem particularly helpful to a lot of people, but the simple fact is that as the law currently stands in Australia at the moment, when it comes to self-defence in your own home, or anywhere else for that matter, there is no precise answer.

For example, whether or not someone has stolen something, or have driven at excessive speeds tends to be a matter of fact. In other words, they took something from a store and did not pay for it is a fact, or that they drove 20 miles per hour over the speed limit is also a fact.

Therefore, when those individuals are taken through the criminal justice system, the decision with regards to their guilt is fundamentally not open to interpretation because the evidence against them is explicit.

With regards to self-defence and whether someone was either justified in using it, or if they did so to a degree which is lawful, is far more open to a subjective opinion, should they ever be tried for doing so unlawfully.


Why The Cleaning Of Health Care Facilities Should Only Be Done By Professionals

Cleaning Of Health Care Facilities

Health care facilities, be it clinics, hospitals, or dentist offices are in regular need of professional commercial cleaning services. Given that how critical cleanliness and hygiene are to an individual’s health, if you think that cleaning health care facilities is similar to cleaning offices, and other types of commercial premises, then you are mistaken.

Cleaning health care facilities is not something which should be left to amateurs because you need these premises to not just be clean but they also need to be fully sanitised and left in as hygienic a condition as possible, which is why only professional commercial cleaners like should be trusted to do it. Here are some more reasons why.

Knowledge And Experience

It is true that anyone could pick up a mop. a brush and a duster and say they are a cleaner. We have to admit that in the case of some basic business premises like a small office, they could probably do an ok job with just those ‘tools’. However, when it comes to the cleaning and sanitisation of health care facilities, doing an ‘ok’ job is simply not good enough.

We are talking about people’s health, so being able to do that sort of work effectively, requires experience and a great deal of specialised knowledge. Knowing what chemicals you can use to clean and sanitise, or what areas require even greater levels of hygiene are just two of the benefits a professional commercial cleaning company can offer.


7 Types of Psychological Disorders

Psychological Disorders

Just as doctors at a local surgery have to treat a wide range of physical conditions, the exact same principle applies to psychology. The Experienced Psychologists at tell us many people are under the misconception that a psychologist treats something called ‘mental illness’, but that is the same as calling muscle strains, broken bones, heart conditions, respiratory and digestive problems as simply a ‘physical illness’.

The most likely reason for it is that most people are simply not aware of the many individual types of psychological disorders that an individual can suffer from, and so we are going to outline, in no particular order, no fewer than 7 of them right now.

#1 Eating Disorders: These get a lot of publicity due to the number of celebrities who have suffered from them.  They include conditions such as bulimia and anorexia nervosa which each have the sufferer consuming too much, or too little food, respectively. Other behaviours can include inducing themselves to vomit, taking laxatives, and a self-loathing of their appearance.

#2 Stress-Related Disorders: Specific conditions include adjustment, acute stress, and post-traumatic stress disorders. These are usually triggered by specific events or a series of events which have induced high levels of stress. Unlike other people, sufferers are unable to reduce their stress levels and experience the likes of flashbacks, nightmares, anxiety, and feelings of isolation.


Understanding the Health Effects of Workplace Discrimination

Workplace Discrimination

Despite the governments best efforts to eliminate all forms of discrimination from Australian culture and society, it still remains. In the workplace, things like racial, gender and religious discrimination are common, especially against minority groups.

Because of this, thousands of people across the country suffer some form of mental illness every year. Even low-level workplace discrimination can have a cumulative effect which can impact absolutely anyone.

As you can imagine, it’s important that we’re able to identify and deal with these impacts before they become too severe. Below, we’ve outlined a few strategies to help you with office sickness, regardless of your exact situation.

Pay Careful Attention to Your Mental State

For starters, it’s extremely important to make sure you’re aware of your mental state and any lasting irregularities. This is true regardless of whether or not you’re being discriminated against.

The key to maintaining mental health is to be mindful of the following:

  • Any loss of motivation or lack of energy that could signal the onset of depression, anxiety or any other illness.
  • Lower self-confidence, including in social settings where you would have been comfortable in the past.
  • A desire to stay home from work. Everyone loves a day off from time to time, but if you find yourself having trouble getting out of bed for work every day, you could have a problem.
  • Any increase in alcohol and/or cigarette consumption.

If you identify these or any other mental health warning signs, be sure to speak with a psychologist or other medical professional as soon as possible.


How You Know Your Child Might Have a Language Disorder

If someone has ever recommended that your child see an expert in speech pathology, then you might be quite confused by what they mean. If your child doesn’t have problems with stuttering or pronunciation, then how can they need to see a speech pathologist?

You may be surprised to know that communication goes beyond just speaking, and speech pathology can be a way in which to help children with many disabilities. Read on to learn what indicators may be present to identify a language disorder, and why a speech expert could be of assistance.

How to Define a Language Disorder

You can define a language disorder as having trouble expressing your thoughts vocally, or finding it problematic to understand what other people are saying. Speech, reading, and writing all form part of a language disorder, with treatment options depending on what that disorder is. Language disorders can go hand in hand with other conditions, such as developmental disabilities, autism, and ADHD.

What Does a Language Disorder Look Like?

According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), a language disorder can be broken down into:

  • Phonology
  • Syntax and Morphology
  • Semantics
  • Pragmatics
  • Social, emotional, and behavioural considerations

Phonology relates to problems with early speech, limited phonological awareness (rhyming, blending), limited vocalisation compared to same-age peers, and difficulties with speech sound. Morphology and syntax, on the other hand, refers to errors with verbs and pronouns, trouble with grammar, and challenges relating to complex sentences, among other things.

Children with language disorders may also find it challenging to play and relate to peers, comprehend social situations, and contribute in classroom environments.

What Can a Speech Pathologist Do?

A language disorder should always be diagnosed by an experienced professional, so the first step for any worried parent should be their child’s GP. If they have concerns, they may refer the parent to a speech pathologist to intervene and provide a diagnosis and treatment options.

How someone in speech pathology can help depends on the age of the child and the severity of the language disorder, not to mention whether any other disabilities and conditions may play a part.


Simple Ways to Avoid Sickness in the Office

Self-care most certainly comes into play when you are trying to stop yourself from succumbing to the “office ‘flu”. You use hand sanitiser, are wary of communal areas, and stay on high alert for the sneezer in your workplace who never seems to cover their mouth.

However, there’s something extra that can help reduce the risk of office sickness, and that’s using a “infection control-style” commercial cleaner is better than DIY methods. Read on to learn what those might be, and why they are worthwhile for your workplace.

Daily Surface Disinfecting & Cleaning

You might think it’s going a little overboard to clean and disinfect surfaces in your workplace every day, but think how many people are in your business? How many people touch the bathroom door, the kitchen benches, and the office phones?

Any surfaces in communal areas, and even your own cubicle, should be considered for daily cleaning and disinfecting. A commercial cleaning company can be of assistance by cleaning them with an all-purpose cleaner, followed up with disinfectant spray.


5 Things to Know Before Your Cataract Surgery

Cataract surgery is a routine procedure during which a foggy and blurred lens is removed from the affected eye and replaced with an artificial lens. Although cataract surgery is very common, it can still be scary for some.

The best thing to do in the face of an unknown and frightening procedure is to get some helpful information. We’re here to give you our top five tips to know before you go in for your cataract surgery.

1. Cataracts Form Naturally With Aging

The first thing to realize about cataracts is that they are quite normal. They occur naturally as we age, and most often they are quite harmless. As they start to cause blurring, early treatments can help greatly, such as stronger prescription glasses.

It’s only when cataracts start to really interfere with your vision that they become necessary to remove. They aren’t going to become deadly overnight, and most often you’ll know when your cataracts are starting to get worse. You will have plenty of time to plan ahead with your doctor.

2. You May Still Need Glasses After Your Surgery

There are a couple of different types of surgeries and two varieties of lenses you can choose for your procedure. Depending on your choice, your long distance vision will improve but not necessarily your short range vision.

A monofocal lens will generally restore only your long distance vision, whereas a multifocal lens will restore your reading vision as well. Your choice will depend on several factors, like price point, necessity and what your doctor recommends. Regardless of your decision, it’s important to know that cataract surgery is not a magical fix-all, and its primary function is to restore normal eyesight rather than create perfect vision.

3. Cataract Surgery Is Often Covered by Insurance

The type of lens you choose will also determine how much of your surgery is covered by insurance. Monofocal lenses are usually covered by insurance, whereas multifocal lenses typically are not because of the higher expenses associated with them. Similarly, basic cataract surgery is covered by insurance, whereas newer methods of advanced laser eye surgery usually aren’t.

Out of pocket expenses for cataract surgery typically range from $1000 to $3000 per eye depending on the exact procedure. Obviously, it can be costly without insurance. Therefore, if pricing is an issue for you, make sure to factor the qualifications for insurance coverage into your planning process.


Why Fish Oil is Something Worth Adding to Your Diet

Fish OilMany Australians are on the hunt for ways to improve their health and fitness. Eating well, along with regular exercise, is at the top of the list. However, there are also supplements, vitamins, and minerals you can consume to provide unparalleled health benefits too.

Fish oil is something that you might not think would factor into your diet, but could have more benefits than you think. Omega 3 fatty acids, which are in fish oil extracted from the tissue of fish, can support your health and can be more rewarding than you might think. Read on to learn why adding this oil to your shopping cart could be a good idea.

Heart Health

Illnesses relating to heart health are all too prevalent, which is why many people are on the hunt for ways to improve their heart health, or at least maintain it. Fish oil may be the answer. Some studies show that fish oil in a supplement form can reduce your risk of heart disease. It can also lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Talk to your GP to see if fish oil supplements might be right for you.

Weight Maintenance

Eating well is an excellent way in which to lose weight or maintain healthy body weight, but fish oil can’t hurt the process. If you take a fish oil supplement while consuming a balanced diet and exercising, you may be able to reduce some of those obesity risks.


Fighting Dental Fear in Children

Dental Fear in Children

Fear of the dentist affects around five percent of the Australian population. To someone who doesn’t fear their dental check-up, they may not see what all the fuss is about. However, to those who have a phobia, believe some dental myths or are genuinely scared of the experience, it can be overwhelming. Fear of a dental technician can start from a young age, with a childhood experience often tainting future appointments too.

Your local dentist will advise that if you are worried about your children being scared or overwhelmed with their scheduled dentist visits, then it might be time to get proactive. There are several things you can to do to ensure their check-ups are as straightforward as possible.

Meet First

When you take your dog to a vet clinic for the first time, the vet will shower them in love, give them treats and toys, and lay a foundation for positive veterinary visits going forward. The same concept applies to a child’s first trip to the dentist.

The first one should be merely a meet and greet, offering you a chance to ask questions as a parent, and for the child to learn all about the clinic and meet the dentist and their team who will be taking care of them. Then, the next time you return, your child will be in familiar surroundings.

Be Mindful of What You Say

If you have had a damaging dental experience in the past, then it’s a good idea to be aware of what you say around your children. A dentist’s office should be a positive place, not one of horror. Avoid using negative language about a dentist and focus on the good in the visit – such as keeping your teeth sparkling clean and healthy.

Prepare Them

In the days before to your child’s first dental check-up, prepare them by dropping information into everyday conversation. Get them used to talking about their teeth, and even help them to count them so they can be full of fun information to tell their dentist when they meet them for the first time.

Encourage Beneficial Oral Care Habits

If you want your child’s first in-chair check-up to be a rewarding one, then lay the groundwork from a baby. Wipe their gums with soft gauze, see a dentist as soon as they are one year old or their first tooth erupts, and make it a fun exercise to brush their teeth twice daily. When you instill oral health habits from a young age, their teeth are more likely to be in tip-top shape when it comes time to attend their first check-up.


Food and Exercises To Keep Your Eyes Healthy


There are many jobs that can cause eyestrain, especially those in the area of computers. If you work as an SEO expert you’ll be focussed on that computer screen for 8 hours a day or more, which can be a big strain on your eyes. Since we all depend on our eyes a great deal, it is essential to keep them healthy and there are several ways to do this.

Food to keep your eyes healthy

One way is to have a healthy diet, but there are certain foods on restaurant menus that are better for eye health than others, so make sure you include them in your diet every day.

  • Foods that are orange in color contain beta-carotene, a nutrient that is especially good for eyesight. Carrots, sweet potato, and pumpkin are easy additions to your evening meals.


Why You Need to Use a Body Exfoliator

Body Exfoliator

Body exfoliation is something that can be beneficial for anyone with any skin type. While traditionally, such body care products as a body exfoliator were for removing dry and dead skin, it can do so much more. What’s more, you don’t even need to have dry skin to reap the rewards. If you’re not yet convinced of the benefits of a body exfoliator product, then read on. You will be more than surprised.

Removes Dry Skin

Of course, the first and most well-known benefit from a body exfoliator – be it a natural body care product or a synthetic one, is that it can remove dry skin. Every day, your toned body needs to shed a lot of skin, and exfoliation products can help to speed up the process.

Unclogs Your Pores

Do you find yourself with whiteheads and blackheads more often than not? Then try an exfoliating body product. When you exfoliate your skin, you’re getting rid of dead skin as well as surface debris that builds up during the day. By doing so, you’re unclogging your pores and stopping the formation of whiteheads and blackheads. If you don’t unclog your pores, they build up with all manner of dirt and skin, causing oil production under the skin and the resultant pimples.

Reduces Acne

By using a natural body care product such as a skin exfoliator, you can reap the rewards of reduced acne or a reduced risk of getting it in the first place. While exfoliators help to unclog your pores and reduce blackheads and whiteheads, it can also help to prevent acne. You can use a skin exfoliator once or twice a week to clean out your pores and reduce your acne risk.


5 Ways Improving Your Dental Health Can Improve Your Overall Wellbeing

Dental Health

It is a well known fact that your oral and dental health is linked to your general well-being. Clear Choice Dental say that therefore it is very important to make sure that you visit your dentist regularly to make sure that your teeth and gums remain in great condition.

However, with this in mind, you may be wondering exactly what sort of benefits a healthy mouth can have with respect to your general health and wellbeing. Luckily for you, we have put together a list of our top five ways that improving your dental health, creating your perfect set of teeth, can improve your overall wellbeing. These include:

  1. Healthy Saliva Will Keep Your Gut Healthy

Your saliva is your bodies first defence against harmful bacteria and viruses within your body. Disease causing organisms can easily enter your mouth, and from there they are able to move down into the heart or lungs – if they aren’t stopped first. Saliva contains antibodies which can destroy pathogenic organisms, including those that cause things like the common cold or HIV infections.

  1. An Unhealthy Mouth Can Cause Digestive Infections

Everything which goes through your mouth eventually ends up in your stomach and digestive system. If you have infections in your teeth, gums or elsewhere in your mouth, they can spread to your stomach and the rest of your digestive system, causing all sorts of problems.

  1. An Unhealthy Mouth Smells!

There is nothing worse than someone with terrible breath. One of the best ways to make sure that you have bad breath, is to make sure that your mouth is unhealthy. While bad breath won’t directly impact your health, it will make it hard for you to have meaningful social interactions and relationships, and it may even make it hard for you to find a job. This can affect your mental health.