Court of Appeal: Mother’s New Partner Cannot Participate in Family Counselling Because of Restraining Order

The Court of Appeal recently ruled on a situation involving complicated family dynamics, allegations of abuse, and a restraining order. The Court removed a condition in an order requiring a father to attend family counselling meetings with his ex-wife, her new partner, and the former couple’s children. The Court did not find these terms appropriate …

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Judge Criticizes Father Who Submitted “Sexts” Sent by Mother as Evidence in Custody Dispute

The Ontario Superior Court recently addressed the question, “Do nude pictures of parents help judges decide who should get custody?”. Justice Pazaratz answered in the negative and criticized a father for attaching series of nude selfies of his ex-spouse to an affidavit that he filed in support of his motion for a custody change. The …

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Can a Father Force a Mother and Child to Return to Ontario?

In a decision in which a father sought a court order forcing the mother of his child to return to Toronto after she moved to New Brunswick in violation of a previous court order, an Ontario court permitted the mother to remain in New Brunswick, based on the best interests of the child in question. …

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Amber Alert Custody Battle – Allegations of Abuse & Manipulation

In December 2016, 9-year-old Layla Sabry was the subject of an Amber Alert after her mother, Allana Haist, took her and went into hiding instead of attending a scheduled court hearing.  After a 10-day Canada-wide manhunt, Ms. Haist was arrested in Hamilton, Ontario. Custody Battle Layla was born and primarily raised in Egypt by her mother …

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Deciding Custody & Access: Part Science and Part Art

Justice Sloan of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice recently observed that, Deciding the custody and access of children is part science and part art. In Henderson v. Cayuga, Justice Sloan was asked to rule on a motion with respect to the residency schedule of a 4-year-old girl, Sophie.   Sophie’s father expressed serious concerns about …

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How Much is Too Much?

How much money is too much money to spend battling your ex?  How much time is too much time to spend battling your ex?  How much conflict is too much conflict to endure while you battle your ex? A Cautionary Tale for Parents M. v. F., a 2015 decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal, …

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Child Protection Law in Ontario – Katelynn’s Principle & Bill 89

You’ve undoubtedly heard the name Katelynn Sampson along with the unforgettable details of the physical abuse she endured at the hands of the people charged with her care and safety.  Seven-year-old Katelynn died in 2008 after her body went into septic shock.   Her autopsy revealed that she had 70 wounds at the time of her death, …

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What is a Paternity Agreement?

The Basics of a Paternity Agreement A “Paternity Agreement” is a type of Domestic Contract.  A Paternity Agreement will typically arise in a situation where parties: have a child or children together; are not married; and are ending the relationship. The Family Law Act of Ontario (FLA) defines a Paternity Agreement as follows: Definitions 1. (1) In this …

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Parenting & Mental Illness: A Custody Decision

A Manitoba Court recently examined the relationship between mental illness and parenting when it was asked to rule on the issue of custody with respect to the children of a divorced couple who were dealing with the mother’s Delusional Disorder diagnosis and the father’s violent temper. In Ulloa v. Ulloa, the parties each took the position that the …

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Tips for Age-Appropriate Visitation

When parties with children go through a separation or divorce one of the most urgent issues to address is the visitation schedule.  Whether one parent has sole custody or the parties have agreed to (or have been ordered to) share physical custody of the children, a child’s scheduled time with each parent must be given careful consideration. …

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