Court Procedure: Family Court vs. Small Claims

Court Procedure: Family Court vs. Small Claims

When starting a court proceeding related to an issue that stems from the breakdown of a relationship, most people will assume that they must bring their matter to the family courts. Sometimes, however, the matter can be brought as a civil claim in small claims court.  In this post, we will discuss the 2016 case of Pilon v. Lavigne 2016 ONSC 1965 and examine when matters should properly be brought in family court and when they should be brought in small claims court.

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Finances: Disclosure From New Partners

Finances: Disclosure From New Partners

Your spouse may move in with someone new, and their partner may contribute to the overall costs/expenses of the household.  This might impact the amount of spousal support payable based on that contribution. In order to assess what impact re-partnering has on spousal support, some financial disclosure from the new partner may be necessary. In this post we will discuss the limits on how much disclosure you can request from your ex’s new partner with reference to a recent court decision dealing specifically with this issue.

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Mediation: Why You Still Need a Lawyer

Mediation: Why You Still Need a Lawyer

In mediation, parties hire a neutral person to facilitate a conversation between them, with the goal of reaching an agreement.  Your spouse might tell you a lawyer will only cause conflict and cost money.  Your mediator likely already provided you with the legal information you need to reach an agreement. So why do you need to hire a lawyer when you’re not fighting? 

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Parenting After Separation: Parenting Coordination

Parenting After Separation: Parenting Coordination

In some cases, even after parents have obtained an order, arbitration award, or entered into a separation/parenting agreement, high levels of conflict can remain. This conflict can make it exceptionally difficult for parents to work together. In situations where parents cannot agree on a parenting decision, they can turn to a parenting coordinator to assist them in resolving their disputes. In this post we will discuss what parenting coordination is, and how a parenting coordinator may be able to assist you.

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The Mandatory Information Program

The Mandatory Information Program

The MIP provides information related to the family court system, local community resources, and various options outside of the court system that are available to couples that are separating. The MIP will also go over the legal issues related to custody and access, child/spousal support, property division, net family property, and the matrimonial home. Parties are obligated to attend this session unless their case is exempt. You must attend the MIP before your first court appearance, with some exceptions for urgent and emergency motions.

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Prenuptial Agreements: Myths & Facts

Prenuptial Agreements: Myths & Facts

A prenup agreement is an important part of any financial plan, but many people think they don't need one.  Read this post to learn about three reasons people claim they don't need a prenup, why those reasons are really myths, and what the facts are.

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Child Support: "Special and Extraordinary Expenses"

Child Support: "Special and Extraordinary Expenses"

In this case, the claimed special/extraordinary expenses were day care, tutoring, extra curricular activities, and the cost of medication that exceeded the amount covered by the Applicant Mother’s coverage. In coming to a decision, the court had to determine what actually constitutes an “extraordinary” expense, and whether that expense was reasonable and necessary in relation to the child’s best interests. When determining whether an expense is “extraordinary” or not, the court must turn to section 7 of the Child Support Guidelines, and past case law.

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