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Tuesday, May 23, 2017 @ 8:59 AM

Nova Scotia modernizes family law legislation Julia Cornish

Nova Scotia is moving to modernize how the law treats children. Amended legislation, which comes into effect on May 26, is intended to improve support for children and put their interests first when their families break up. ... [read more]

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 @ 8:15 AM

Views of the Child Reports good addition to family justice toolbox Voice of the child

Canadian law requires that courts take account of the views of children in making decisions about their future, and there is growing recognition that if this is done in a sensitive fashion, it can lead to more informed decisions and better outcomes for children. Our recently completed study of an Ontario pilot project found that non-evaluative Views of the Child Reports, prepared by social workers after two interviews with a child, can be a cost-effective way of obtaining information for the family justice process and promoting settlements. ... [read more]

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 @ 8:00 AM

Look at causes to control family law costs | Sarah Boulby

The dire state of access to justice in the family law context has attracted a great deal of attention recently and with that, calls for reform. Our courts are flooded with self-represented litigants. Some have certainly chosen to appear without counsel but many of them are simply unable to afford a lawyer. While there is discussion of how to solve the problem there has been little consideration of what has caused the problem. ... [read more]

Friday, May 19, 2017 @ 3:20 PM

Seven new judicial appointments for Ontario

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould on May 19 announced the following judicial moves and appointments for the province of Ontario: ... [read more]

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 @ 9:46 AM

Lerners LLP adds Raithby as family law associate

Michelle Raithby has joined Lerners LLP as an associate lawyer in its London office family law group. ... [read more]

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 @ 8:42 AM

MARITAL PROPERTY - Equalization or division - Asset types - Business, commercial or non-family assets - Valuation of assets - Practice and procedure - Appeals

Appeal by the husband from an order for equalization of net family property and retroactive and ongoing spousal support. The parties married in 1983, separated in 2009 and divorced in January 2016. Their two children were independent adults. The wife left work as a real estate agent to raise the children and manage the household. She returned to work in 1994 to support the family following the husband's sudden loss of his job. She continued part-time work until 2012. Meanwhile, the husband reestablished his career, achieving significant success and amassing substantial wealth. The wife played a role in the administration of the husband's companies until just after separation. Her involvement was abruptly terminated and her monthly advances were reduced from $11,500 to $5,000. Litigation ensued. An interim order provided for spousal support of $10,000 per month. The 2016 trial judgment required the husband to pay the wife $3 million to equalize net family property in five equal annual instalments based on valuation of the husband's corporate interests. The wife was awarded monthly spousal support of $28,978 based on the husband's imputed annual income of $1 million and the wife's imputed annual income of $35,000. Arrears of retroactive support were fixed at $1.1 million, subject to an income tax reduction. The husband appealed. ... [read more]

Monday, May 15, 2017 @ 1:37 PM

Motion on paralegal licensing knee-jerk reaction to Bonkalo report | Joseph Griffiths

On March 6, 2017, the report of former chief justice of the Ontario Court of Justice, Annemarie Bonkalo, titled “Family Legal Services Review” was released. Seventeen days later, a motion was filed with the Law Society of Upper Canada by a group of lawyers wanting to amend the paralegal licensing guidelines to require future paralegal licensing candidates to possess “an undergraduate degree along with training equivalent to that provided by law schools in family law, tax and evidence.” Since both the Law Society and the Attorney General’s office are still seeking feedback from the public until May 15 in response to Justice Bonkalo’s report, the motion appears to be something of a knee-jerk and pre-emptive reaction to her recommendations, most notably a controversial recommendation that paralegals be permitted to provide specific family legal services under the terms of a “specialized license.” ... [read more]

Thursday, May 11, 2017 @ 1:17 PM

CBA unveils children's rights toolkit for legal professionals

The Canadian Bar Association on May 11 introduced a free, comprehensive new tool to address an inherent knowledge gap on children’s rights in Canada. ... [read more]

Thursday, May 11, 2017 @ 12:55 PM

Motion on expanding paralegal scope of practice tabled at LSUC meeting Michael Lesage

A motion regarding paralegals expanding their scope of practice into family law raised heated debate, and was eventually tabled, effectively adjourning the discussion for now, at the Law Society of Upper Canada’s annual general meeting on May 10. ... [read more]

Thursday, May 11, 2017 @ 8:40 AM

Horowitz v. Nightingale: the end of secondary arbitration?

Lawyers, mediators and judges often include in their family law settlements or orders a term that issues regarding the interpretation, implementation, or future variation of the settlements or orders shall be determined through mediation/arbitration with a mediator/arbitrator to be agreed upon by the parties. This can be an effective mechanism to resolve issues that arise subsequent to the settlement or order. However, a recent decision by the Ontario Superior Court has thrown into doubt the viability of this process. ... [read more]