Addressing the issue of parental alienation

What is parental alienation? Parental alienation (PA) has been a challenging issue for decades for many women leaving abusive partners. In recent years, the use of PA claims has risen. A common claim by an abusive partner is that the mother is intentionally alienating the children from him when, in fact, she is engaging in…

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The challenge of judicial education

The passage of Bill C-233 through third reading in the Senate on April 19th offers hope to survivors of intimate partner violence and their children, while also raising some questions about exactly how it will be implemented. While the Bill has two distinct components – the use of electronic monitoring in intimate partner violence (IPV)…

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Recent case: Relocation in the context of family violence

woman's hands on thick book

This case summary of A.J.K. v J.P.B. 2022 MBQB 43 was prepared by Pamela Cross. While this is a Manitoba case and, therefore, not binding on Ontario courts, the decision is interesting because of the extensive exploration of family violence in the context of the mother’s request to move with the children without providing notice…

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Recent case: Supreme Court mobility decision

woman's hands on thick book

In Barendregt v Grebliunas, the Supreme Court of Canada considered which parent should have primary responsibility for their two young children and whether the mother could relocate them to a town some distance from where they had been living with their father. The family was living in Kelowna, British Columbia, when, following an assault by the…

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B.C.’s informal court process pilot a flawed approach

B.C.’s provincial government has recently announced a new family law informal court pilot in Kamloops. Parties can consent to participate in an informal process where the trial judge takes a facilitative role and manages the conduct of the case. Lawyers are permitted to attend but not to ask questions (except of expert witnesses). The rules…

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Recent case: Capacity to marry

woman's hands on thick book

Tanti v Tanti 2021 ONCA 717: This Ontario Court of Appeal decision upheld the decision of the trial court to find a marriage between an elderly man with some dementia to a much younger woman valid. Paul Tanti and Sharon Joseph got married in 2019, when he was 89 years old. Shortly after the marriage, his…

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Case update: More on courts and vaccines

Lawyer looks at documents

This case update was written by Pamela Cross, Luke’s Place Legal Director. A few months ago, I wrote a summary of court decisions about vaccinations for children which reflected a general judicial attitude that courts should follow the government pro-vaccine attitude. Two recent cases, with very similar facts, look at this issue from the perspective…

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Making systemic change through an inquest (Part two)

Pamela Cross - Guthrie Award speech by Carol Barkwell

Over the three weeks of the recent femicide inquest held in Pembroke, Ontario, the five jurors read hundreds if not thousands of pages of exhibits and listened to the testimony of more than 30 witnesses who spoke to a broad range of issues related to the 2015 murders of Carol Culleton, Anastasia Kuzyk and Nathalie…

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