Legal update: Government launches public consultation on draft Children’s Bill27Nov2015
Further to our article posted on November 20th 2015 entitled “Long-awaited Children’s Bill coming soon to Hong Kong“, we are pleased to announce that the Hong Kong Government launched a four month public consultation on November 25th 2015 in order to gauge the public’s views on proposed legislation to implement the recommendations made by the Law Reform Commission (LRC) in its Report on Child Custody and Access. The proposed bill, titled “Children Proceedings (Parental Responsibility) Bill”, is meant to bring Hong Kong’s laws with respect to children in line with other common law jurisdictions like Australia and the UK. This long-awaited draft legislation is welcome news as it will hopefully modernise the law to the benefit of all children and families in Hong Kong.
“The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) Government is committed to protecting children’s welfare and rights. There has been increasing community concern about protecting the interests and rights of children affected by divorce. To safeguard the best interests of children, we propose to adopt the LRC’s recommendations to put in place a ‘parental responsibility model’ through legislation…This marks an important step forward. The best interests of children should be the guiding principle for all court proceedings concerning children.”
Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung
The full statement from the HKSAR Government can be found here as well as how you can participate in the public consultation process.