This article reports on a study of Children's Court files relating to completed applications for variation of care orders (section 90 applications) in three specialised Children's Courts in New South Wales. All files that could be located for completed applications were reviewed and nonidentifying data was recorded. The study attempted to examine the type of applications, the characteristics of applicants and the outcomes of the applications. One hundred and seventeen applications were reviewed: almost half of these were made by the then Department of Community Services (DoCS), and about the same proportion of applications were made by parents. After the section 90 applications were determined there was an increase in care orders allocating parental responsibility to the Minister for Community Services with 73% of the children placed under the care of the minister to age 18.
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