Parenting

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Parenting issues include both decision making for important decisions for your children and your children’s residential schedule.

Parenting

The terms “custody“ and “access” are about to change with amendments to the Divorce Act. Effective July 1, 2020, the terms below will replace “custody” and “access”:

  • decision-making responsibility
  • parenting time
  • contact

Decision making responsibility can be shared by parents or allocated to one parent. It means the duty to make important decisions about a child’s health, education, culture, language, and extracurricular activities.

Parenting time refers to the time a child is in each parent’s care.

Contact means time allocated to a non-spouse such as a grandparent or step parent or other significant adult in a child’s life.

Ideally, parents will agree on arrangements for their children in a Parenting Plan. Family professionals (usually social workers with a Masters Degree) can help parents who need help developing plans for their kids. Specially trained family professionals are skilled at:

  • facilitating constructive communication
  • providing guidance about how to minimize negative emotional effects of a separation
  • informing parents about arrangements that might work best, depending on the ages and stages of their children

If parents cannot agree on parenting arrangements, either directly or with the help of family specialists and/or family lawyers, a judge can make a court order based on the child’s “best interests”. Factors that will determine “best interests” are the relationships with parents, willingness of a parent to encourage the child’s relationship with the other parent, the child’s views and preferences, cultural upbringing, ability to care for a child, family violence, and any criminal or civil actions relevant to the child’s well-being.

Our Practising Lawyers
Alison Dennis

My practice encompasses all areas of family law including complex property and support issues, parenting disputes, separation agreements, marriage contracts, and cohabitation agreements.  I also have significant experience with jurisdictional and mobility issues.

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Alison Dennis

Sharyn Langon

I have 30 years’ experience helping clients move beyond separation towards a better life. It can be a daunting time. Apart from questions about the law, clients ask: Where do I start? Will my kids adjust? Where will I live? What will my finances look like? How can I negotiate with my spouse when we are not on great terms? When will I be divorced? How long will this all take? How much will it cost?

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Sharyn Langon

Alin Mayer

I focus my law practice exclusively in family law. I have particular expertise in litigation, serving high-net worth individuals with complex assets or compensation, as well as international clients. I strive towards efficient and long-lasting resolutions for my clients, while aiming to reduce the anxiety inherent in family law disputes.

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Alin Mayer

Katelynn Schoop

I practice exclusively family law and help clients with smart, practical, and effective solutions tailored to each family. I work efficiently and focused on a positive outcome, whether in negotiations or in litigation. I understand the importance of clear communication in a family law matter and make sure that my clients are involved in each step of the process. I have experience in all types of family law processes, including negotiations, court, and collaborative divorce and offer my clients a wide range of options to choose from.

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Katelynn Schoop

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