Magellan Program in the Family Court

The Magellan Program was created by the Family Court to deal with matters involving serious allegations of abuse to children.

If a matter is commenced in the Federal Circuit Court, an Orders may be made by the Judge for the matter to be transferred to the Family Court and placed in the Magellan Program.

A matter being transferred to the Magellan Program generally occurs when a party files a Notice of Risk of Child Abuse or Family Violence with the Court.

The Magellan Program is designed to move quickly through to a final hearing to ensure that the best interest of the child are considered and appropriate orders are made for their care and safety.  When directions are made for the running of a matter  in the Magellan Program, they must be strictly complied with by all parties and their legal representatives.

When a matter is allocated to the Magellan program, it will be allocated to a Judge. The matter will remain with that Judge (and a Family Consultant once appointed) for the remainder of the matter and for final determination, if necessary. The Magellan program is closely managed by the Judge.

When a matter is transferred to the Magellan Program, an appointment for an Independent Children’s Lawyer is almost always ordered.  In addition, the Court is able to request documentation from State Authorities such as the Department of Family and Community Services (previously known as DOCS).  That State Authority may also be invited to intervene as a party to the proceedings.

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