Family Law Fact: Can Cohabitation Agreements or Marriage Agreement (aka Prenuptial Agreement) make reference to the custody, parenting, and support of existing or unborn children? The answer is generally, no. Where children are concerned, decisions or agreements related to the custody, parenting and support of children should be reached at the time of separation and any agreement or sections of the agreement which address these issues prior to separation could likely be unenforceable.
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Family Law Fact: Cohabitation Agreements set out the rights and obligations of unmarried couples when they choose to live with one another without legally entering into a marriage. Given that couples are deemed to be “common law spouses” after 3 years of living with one another, for the purposes of family law, certain rights and obligations arise after 3 years of cohabitation even without marriage. As such, some couples choose to enter into a carefully crafted Cohabitation Agreement to either affirm some rights under the law and set out their parameters, or to limit them. To learn more about your rights during cohabitation, tap the Contact button in our bio to speak with one of our Toronto Family Lawyers.
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We at Separy Law PC wish you and your family, a happy, healthy, safe and (distanced) Thanksgiving! Our thoughts are with all of the families that have lost loved ones this year and those that cannot be together in the same household this weekend. Having said that, no matter what our circumstances are, we should continue to be grateful and express our gratitude to the brave frontline men and women that risk their lives for our communities each day.
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COVID-19 Procedural Fact: Lawyers may meet with their clients virtually during the pandemic, by #zoom or other online platforms, to sign original documents such as cohabitation agreements, marriage agreements, and separation agreements by way of what we call “in counterpart” signing. This means each party to the agreement or legal document can sign the document separately and the document can be witnessed virtually. Our lawyers watch and witness our clients sign legal documents virtually and the lawyer also signs the document separately from the client attesting to acting as a witness. Then, the client sends the originals of the signed agreement or legal document to our law firm and we put all of the signature pages together with the agreement or legal document and Voila! A legal document is entered into and is fully enforceable! Call us today to speak with one of our Toronto agreement lawyers by taping the Contact button in our bio.
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Back to school for kids during COVID-19 can be a scary experience and we empathize with that. We’ve been a bit silent lately as we have been busy dealing with these issues where often, one separated parent disagrees with the other separated parent’s decision to enrol their children for in-person attendance in Ontario schools. This has caused some great upheaval leading to some urgent motions seeking Judges to make decisions instead of the parents. For a great blog article on the issue please tap on our web link in our bio and click our blog page. For more information, please call us today to talk to one of child custody lawyers, by tapping our Contact button in our bio for matters related to disputes around your children’s education during COVID-19.
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Do you believe in vaccinating your children ? Are you worried that your separated partner or spouse does not believe in vaccines? Do you have fears about how vaccination beliefs may impact your ability to make decisions related to your children’s best interests during COVID-19? We know how you must feel and we have the answers you need to navigate this very serious issue. For an informative blog article on the topic, tap on our website button on the link in our bio and read today’s blog on the issue OR call our office today to talk with one of our Toronto Custody Lawyers.
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It’s been a while since we updated you on family law matters. That’s because we’ve been busy handling the court filings for all of our new clients during the pandemic whom could not file their applications or responding documents for family law issues such as custody, parenting, and support issues with the Ontario Court of Justice. Last week the courts announced an electronic platform allowing the filing and commencement of all new cases and matters in family law. Well done Ontario Courts! Our firm and clients appreciate the resumption of all of our access to justice! To commence an application or to respond to a family law application served on you, contact one of our Toronto Family Law Lawyers today by tapping the Contact button in our bio.
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The courts may, for a variety of reasons, decide that a separated parent may only have access or parenting time with their child(ren) if such time is supervised by another adult or even, in some cases, a supervised access centre. During COVID-19 seeing children at supervised access centres or relying on 3rd parties to facilitate or supervise access may be difficult or impossible. Read our article posted today about such issues on our blog page by tapping our website address in our bio and then clicking on our Blog page or call one of our Toronto custody lawyers today by tapping the Contact link in our bio to learn more about your rights in relation to supervised parenting regimes.
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We write to wish you a very happy and healthy July 1st holiday. We know that you are proud to be Canadian today, and we are proud that you are a Canadian today no matter your race, religion, and orientation. We hope that even though you may already be home every day with or without work that, you continue cherish holidays with your families, big or small.

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COVID-19 Family Law Update: We have the much awaited news that Toronto and GTA Ontario Court of Justice courthouses are scheduled to re-open on limited matters such as Children’s Aid Society matters, trials and some domestic issues as of July 6, 2020, if an inspection conducted by the Ministry concludes that the courthouses are safe. For a more detailed read on this potential re-opening of the courts please tap our website button at the link in bio and click our Blog page. Call us today to determine if your family law matter requires court intervention by tapping the contact button in our bio
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COVID-19 family law update: The government of Ontario just released that individuals can expand their “social circle” and have “social gatherings”. We have immediately had family law questions on the distinction and the impact of this expansion on family law parenting schedules. We want to be clear that in the case of “social circles” everyone in your circle must agree to only take part in one circle and to continue to socially distance outside of this circle. “Social gatherings”
involve gatherings outside of your circle which require you to still socially distance 6 feet and engage with others outside of your home. The key to the “social circle”
is an agreement by all members not to engage in any non-socially distancing behaviour outside of the circle. Unfortunately this may mean that’s parents that are in parenting arrangements must continue ensuring that all members of their households continue to socially distance or decide with the separated spouse or partner to be in the same social circle between the children’s households and share the remaining members (out of 10) that may be in the circle between the two households that the children travel back and forth in. Keep in mind that a child may count as one of the 10 members of a circle. If you have concerns about your parenting arrangement and impact of this new regulation contact us today for a consultation by clicking the Contact button in our bio. .
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Making the decision to move to a new address with your children of a separated relationship, or moving out of the city in which your children “habitually” reside may cause significant family law issues during COVID-19 and may even lead to emergency court orders if your separated spouse or partner does not agree with the move, whether you are in a sole custody or joint custody arrangement. Even if you have sole custody by way of an agreement or court order, it does not necessarily mean you can move without the written consent of your separated spouse or partner. To learn more, click on our website link in our bio and click our blog page for a great and up to date article written by our team today, if you are considering moving with your children to a different address during the pandemic. Call us today if you are experiencing any legal issues or would like to commence legal proceedings related to mobility and relocation during the pandemic by tapping on the Contact button in our bio. .
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COVID-19 Family Law Update: We have the much awaited news that Toronto and GTA Superior Court of Justice Courthouses not accepting new family law Applications during COVID-19, will now accept them by e-mail. Responding documents will also be accepted by email and we anticipate that court appearances will likely be by video conference. Call us today to determine if your family law matter requires court intervention by tapping the contact button in our bio
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COVID-19 Family Law Update: 393 University Courthouse, which houses the Superior Court of Justice dealing with all aspects of family law and serving the Toronto community has announced that they are now accepting family law Applications electronically and lifted the requirement that such Applications be urgent. Call us today to speak to one of our Toronto Family Lawyers to learn more about advancing your family law case electronically, by clicking our Contact button in our bio
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What impact has COVID-19 had child support obligations as people lose jobs and incomes decline? Ontario Courts have emphasized that parties should be flexible and encourages discussion between parties or counsel in arranging for a payment plan that is reasonable in light of both the child’s needs and the ability of the payor to meet these needs during the pandemic. Check out our COVID-19 Family Law Blog Series article by visiting our website and clicking on our Blog page. If you are having trouble receiving child support or paying it, give us a call to speak with one of our Toronto Child Support Lawyers today by clicking the Contact button in our bio.
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With the COVID-19 pandemic public health measures loosening, and provincial parks reopening, we want to remind parents in co-parenting relationships to remember to continue to socially distance so that any parenting agreements reached are not disturbed. Call us to learn more about appropriate family law related conduct regarding parenting children during the pandemic by clicking the contact button in our bio .
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But for the pandemic, wedding season would be upon us. It’s a sad fact that beautiful events like this have to be put on hold but many of our clients and potential clients are opting to quarantine with their partners and cohabitate before marriage, instead. As you can imagine, we’ve been getting a lot of calls about cohabitation agreements and marriage agreements with clients that seem apprehensive about addressing the topic with a loved partner. The way we explain the necessity of cohabitation agreements and marriage agreements is that they provide a road map for the relationship. Relationships that have direction and have planned for unfortunate outcomes may thrive. We explain that such agreements are akin to insurance for relationships and if a relationship ends, in our experience, the process of separation and divorce is much smoother and generally less adversarial and combative. To learn more about your rights and obligations which may be outlined in cohabitation agreements and marriage agreements, call us to speak with one of our Toronto Family Lawyers by tapping the Contact button in our bio. .
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To stay home or not to stay home. That is the question as the government loosens some COVID-19 measures. Our strong advice to our friends, existing clients and new clients is to continue to socially distance to ensure that any COVID-19 agreements and arrangements related to the physical custody and parenting time of children are not disturbed or contravened as measures loosen. .
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The Prime Minister and Federal Government announced today that the Child Tax Benefit and the GST/HST Credit for people with children will continue to be paid until September 2020 for those whom have not filed their 2019 Income Tax Return yet. The Federal Government strongly recommended, however, that individuals file their taxes as soon as possible as such benefits might be impacted in the future if taxes have not been filed. If you are having trouble collecting such benefits as a result of your custody arrangement call one of our Toronto Custody Lawyers today, by tapping the Contact button in our bio above.
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