Urgent Family Law matters and Court Motions are very complicated matters of consideration for family law lawyers in Toronto and initiating a family law court motion is risky business if you don’t have the requisite legal advice.
Bringing a Motion for Temporary Orders or Urgent Matters:
The court process takes time, and parties are often waiting for months prior to being heard before a judge. This has never been more true today as we contend with a pandemic, and the protocols put in place to ensure the safety of everybody. As such, you may want to seek to obtain a temporary order prior to a final decision being made by the judge in your case. The opposing party may be denying you parenting time with the children, or where the child or children is currently living is not safe, you may want to bring a motion for a tempary order.
The temporary orders that may be made at a motion will stay in place until the Court makes another temporary order at a later stage, or a final order is made. Either party may make a motion at any time prior to a trial or final order.
In Family Court, there are two types of motions, the first being procedural and the other for a temporary order. A procedural motion, which tend to be simple in nature, may be made for example in seeking to file an individual’s application without financial disclosure, or seeking an extension to file materials after a deadline has passed. A motion for a temporary order may be made in an effort to commence parenting time with a party if the opposing party has been withholding the children, or seeking a temporary order for child support. Motions of a procedural nature, as noted above may be brought at any time, but must have procedural merit and be permissible by the law. They can be techinical in nature.
Motions tend to be brought at least one Case Conference has been attended by the parties, however there are two exceptions. The first exception is urgency, if you can demonstrate that the motion merits urgency such as imminent risk to safety, or if you have been the primary caregiver for the child(ren) and the opposing party is withholding them from you. Another exception would be hardship, if for example a party required child or spousal support in order to secure necessities such as shelter, clothing, or food for the children immediately.
The caveat with bringing motions is that it can get quite complicated and there are penalties involved or “cost consequences”. Typically the unsuccessful party is ordered costs or a penalty for bringing a motion before the civil court. The amount of costs is determined by a Judge. This is why it is critical to be careful prior to bring a motion before a case conference, and have clear legal advice.
Our firm understands that family law matters before the Court can be a daunting experience. We are working with both existing and potential new clients to ensure that their family law matters handled with the utmost of care. Our firm is here to assist you to meet all of your family law needs, and can assist you in any negotiations you may need to resolve. Please call one of our Child Custody Lawyers in Toronto for a consultation related to your matters.
By Christopher Rio Mortel, Associate Lawyer