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Child Custody Archives

Hague Convention - Child Abduction

The international treaty known as the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is part of the statutory framework in all Canadian jurisdictions as well as in over 75 countries. The Convention addresses the inter-jurisdictional legal conflicts when a parent or guardian removes a child from country "A" to country "B". Children wrongfully removed ought to have their residential status determined by the jurisdiction with which they have the closest connection. "Forum shopping" is discouraged.

Motions to Change and Material Change in Circumstances - The passage of time is just not enough to prompt a change in residential time.

Brown v. Lloyd was a motion by the dad to change the previous final order so as to increase his already liberal access time with his then 9 year old son to equal parenting time. The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed dad's appeal from the trial decision (five day trial) that had dismissed his motion for equal time. The appellate court reminds us that even before you can get to first base, you have to establish a "material change in circumstances".  

CHRISTMAS ACCESS

As the temperature dips, the leaves fall, and the Halloween costumes are safely stored away, many begin to look forward to the Christmas season. You have made a shopping list for gifts and have pulled out your trusted recipe box and have begun to plan a delicious Christmas dinner. Perhaps you have lovingly brought out the box of ornaments in anticipation of decorating your tree. So what does all this have to do with child custody and child access?

ALCOHOL MONITORING IN CHILD WELFARE AND CUSTODY/ACCESS CASES

Allegations of alcohol abuse are often advanced to restrict a parent's access to his/her children in both child custody cases and in child welfare (children's aid society) cases. There are reliable measures available to challenge such allegations. 

COURT RAPS CHILD PROTECTION AGENCY'S KNUCKLES

Child welfare agencies have a fairly light onus on them when it comes to analyzing whether or not they were justified in effecting an apprehension of children from their parents' care. (But at least there is some degree of onus on them.) Despite the fairly easy test that they must pass, there are still some occasions where the courts will step in and sanction a children's aid society. Cree Nation and Family Caring Agency v. L.(R.) is thankfully one of those cases.

PARENTAL ALIENATION - SANITY TRIUMPHS IN A CHILD CUSTODY CASE

In an important child custody case, Family Court Chief Justice, John Harper, addresses parental alienation almost without using those words, "parental alienation". Clearly, F. (A.) v. W. (J.) is an egregious example of the lengths that a vengeful and ill parent will go to alienate the children from a formerly loved parent.

LIMITATIONS OF SUPERVISED ACCESS IN CHILD CUSTODY CASES

Supervised access is a frequently advanced claim in child custody - access cases. Supervised access places the child and parent in an artificial and restricted atmosphere. Cases have maintained that supervised access interferes with the parent/child relationship. It is meant to be a temporary measure only. One judge gathers together precedents and reminds us of the applicable legal principles.

SUMMARY JUDGMENT, PROCEDURAL FAIRNESS AND CHILD WELFARE CASES - PART 2

In part 1 of this blog post, I wrote: "Justice J. deP. Wright has issued a brave appeal decision: R.(C) v. C.A.S. of the District of Thunder Bay (Jan. 30, 2013). He criticizes courts and agencies that run roughshod over the procedural rights of parents." Let's examine some different ideas to protect parents' procedural rights and how we might reform the system.

SUMMARY JUDGMENT, PROCEDURAL FAIRNESS AND CHILD WELFARE CASES - PART 1

Has a "Summary Judgment" motion in an Ontario family court resulted in you losing your child to the Children's Aid? Are you now facing a summary judgment motion? The increasing frequency of using this draconian and patently unfair tool to deprive children of their parents in these sorts of child custody cases has long troubled me. It's gratifying to see that at least one Ontario Superior Court Judge seems to agree with me.

Contact Gene C. Colman for a customized legal strategy today.

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