We Are Family: Legal Issues When There Are Children From Multiple Relationships
by Paula Lester on June 15, 2016
In family law, we are seeing an increasing number of clients with multiple ex-spouses and children from past relationships. These clients bring with them new challenges for family lawyers. For example, parents may want to have the same parenting regime with children from multiple relationships, or may wonder why their child support obligations are so much higher than if all of their children had arisen from one relationship.
LGBTQ Parental Equality Legislation in Ontario: Coming Soon?
by Erin Lepine on June 9, 2016
On May 31, 2016, Ontario Premiere Kathleen Wynne announced that the Ontario government will be tabling new parental recognition legislation in September 2016, rather than pushing though the existing Bill 137, commonly referred to as Cy and Ruby’s Act.
Cy and Ruby’s Act was tabled in the Ontario Legislature in October 2015, with the primary purpose being to make birth registration services accessible to LGBTQ families and removing the legal barriers to same.
Life Insurance: Protecting Support Obligations after Death
by Paula Lester on April 28, 2016
What are the insurance implications when one party has a spousal and/or child support obligation to the other? It is common practice to require the payor spouse to designate the recipient spouse as the irrevocable beneficiary of a life insurance policy. This is done either by agreement or by a court order. The minimum required face value of the life insurance policy is set at an amount large enough to ensure that the payor’s support obligations are fully covered in the event of the payor’s death.
How Do Common-law Couples Divide Their Property?
by Alice Weatherston on April 14, 2016
Last month I wrote a blog post explaining how and when partners become common-law spouses in Ontario. That blog focused mainly on spousal support and not the division of property, because the Ontario Family Law Act only provides for property division for married spouses. In Ontario, there are no legislated provisions for property division for common-law spouses. That means, when common-law couples separate, their property is divided based on ownership; that is, each party keeps what they own at the time of separation. However, common-law spouses may be able to make claims to property in certain circumstances, which I will set out briefly below.
Common-law couples can gain an interest in their partner’s property through equitable claims and remedies (which is a discretionary remedy of the court). The most common equitable claim is unjust enrichment. Equitable remedies are not exclusive to common-law couples, but are available between any two parties.
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Parental Abduction: What Is It and What Can I Do?
by Paula Lester on March 24, 2016
Parental abduction occurs when one parent takes their child (or children) without the permission of either the other parent or the court. Parents who abduct their own children may move to a different city, a different province, or a different country.
Parental abduction is a serious issue, and it can be very difficult for the parent left behind to locate the children and to bring fast and effective legal proceedings in order to secure the return of the children.
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