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COVID-19 and Meeting the “Urgency Test”

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, courts have had to consider parties’ requests to hear motions and decide whether a matter meets the “urgency test” (set out below) on a case-by-case basis. In a recent decision, an Ontario court considered whether a mother’s motion met this test in the context of a more recent notice to …

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Allegations Against Father Lead To Reduced Access

We have spent a lot of time during the COVID-19 pandemic covering cases where the courts are asked to determine whether or not a matter is urgent. While some matters might be deemed insufficiently urgent, leaving the parties to have to wait until courts resume normal activities before pursuing their matters, some types of issues …

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Parents Split During COVID-19 Making Custody An Urgent Matter

COVID-19 has not been easy for parents of young children. For parents who are recently divorced or separated, a stressful time can be all the more difficult with the additional health concerns that the pandemic has introduced. A recent decision from the Ontario Court of Justice illustrates some of these challenges. An urgent motion The …

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Court Recognizes Appropriateness of Self-Isolating at a Cottage During COVID-19

As the situation with COVID-19 continues to change and develop, some parties have been challenging their parenting arrangements. In this recent case, an Ontario court considered the mother’s request to suspend the father’s access to their child because the father had chosen to self-isolate with his new partner (and her family) at a cottage. The …

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Father’s Attempt To Alter Access While On Bail Is Not Considered Urgent

As we’ve discussed in a number of blogs over the past ten weeks, COVID-19 has had a tremendous impact on the legal system, with all but the most urgent matters being put on hold for the time being. That said, urgent matters do arise, and Gelman & Associates’ very own Irina Davis recently appeared remotely …

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Father Attempts To Unilaterally Restrict Access

The idea of a blended family, where two divorced or separated parents become partners, may have been a foreign concept many years ago, but is commonplace now. Parents in blended families may still share access to their children with their former partners, something that may not ordinally be an issue, but like many things, becomes …

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Complying With COVID-19 Protocols

An Ontario court recently considered the interesting question of what should happen when one parent fails to follow recent COVID-19 protocols. In this case, the mother brought a motion to suspend the father’s access to their child until he provided evidence that he was complying with public safety directives. The Background The parties had one …

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Mother Granted Exclusive Possession of Matrimonial Home Over COVID-19 Concerns

Parents who share custody and access arrangements for their children have been facing a number of challenges during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In some cases, such as Ribeiro v. Wright, which we discussed in a previous blog, the parent with primary custody has made attempts to suspend the other parent’s access out of fear of …

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How COVID-19 Impacts Family Court Decisions

Over the last few weeks we have used our blog to share news about how COVID-19 is impacting the family courts in Ontario. The courts are currently only hearing urgent matters. The decision we’d like to discuss today is an excellent example of both the types of issues the courts are dealing with as well …

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