What is a Consultation?
Our consultations are one hour, during that time we will get to know your file, understand the situation you are in and then advise you accordingly the best way to proceed based on the different options and strategies that are available. Our goal is to provide you with the information necessary to make an informed decision.
Why would you need a consultation?
Pre-marriage Consultation: Marriage is a big decision in your life, it is important to know what the consequences of marriage are before signing the biggest contract of your life. During our one hour consultation we will advise you on the rights and obligations that bind you with marriage. In addition in view of your particular situation recommend a marriage contract or other that will protect your rights
Separation: if you are contemplating a separation and do not know where to start, we advise you during the consultation about your rights and obligations, and the different options available.
Divorce: During the one hour consultation we will educate you on how family law works in Quebec, in order for you to have the knowledge of how you want to move forward.
Post divorce: If you are already divorced and your ex-spouse is not respecting the judgment, with respect to custody, has not paid the support, or any amounts that were awarded, we can discuss the options as to how to execute the judgment.
If something has changes since your divorce, we can also apply for a modification of the judgment in the event that there is a change of circumstance.
Civil rights: if you feel that you have a claim and that your rights that have not been respected or that you have been wronged, we can discuss whether or not you have a claim that is worth pursuing
What is a marriage contract and is it legal in Quebec?
Marriage contract: In Quebec the default regime of marriage if you do not have a marriage contract is Partnership and Acquests, which means that all income during marriage will be equally divided in the event of divorce. However you do have the option to opt for separation as to property regime, which protects you if you have your own business, investments, are an entrepreneur or intend on becoming one.
What rights do common law couples have in Quebec?
Common law couples: There is a large misconception in Quebec with respect to rights of common law couples. The fact is, there are none. If you intend on having children with a common law partner, or buying property, we will advise you on different ways you can protect yourself in advance.
Divorce is never an easy decision. Choosing a lawyer to help guide you through the process is also difficult and could be daunting. In order to make the decision it is helpful to obtain the necessary information as to what it entails and how it all works
Custody is one of the most difficult parts of a divorce to navigate through during a time of crisis, based on your particular situation we will advise you many different scenarios of custody that are plausible, from shared custody, access rights, sole custody. We can propose different scenarios that will work best for your family and in your children’s best interest.
How to determine the best custody arrangement for the children?
When parents decide to separate, one thing they often do not agree on is the custody of the children. Deciding who will have custody of the children and the modalities of custody is one of the most difficult parts of a divorce to navigate through and it is one where emotions run high. Based on your particular situation, we will advise you as to the many different scenarios of custody that are plausible. These scenarios can range from shared custody, sole custody or access rights;
What is the courts role on custody?
If you and your partner are unable to agree on a custody arrangement, a Superior Court judge will make the decision based on the best interests of each child. In order to render a decision based on the best interest of the child, the judge considers a variety of different factors, namely:
- the children’s ages
- the children’s needs
- the relationship between the child and parent
- maintaining stability in the childrens’ lives
- each parent’s ability to meet the childrens’ needs
- the childrens’ physical and mental health
- the parents’ physical and mental health
- the available time each parent has to spend with the children
- the lifestyles of each parents
- the willingness of each parent to help the children have a good relationship with the other parent
What impact do siblings have on custody?
Another factor that comes into play is the situation of the other siblings, as the courts will try to keep the children together, if at all possible. Additionally, once a child is old enough, their opinion with respect to custody is taken into consideration.
How does Child Support work in Quebec?
Child support in Quebec is public order, it is both parents obligation to support their children. There are specific guidelines, which determine the amount of support payable based on the parents respective incomes
How does Spousal Support work in Quebec?
Spousal support for married couples is determined based on dependency of one of the spouses on the other during marriage. We will calculate and determine the spousal support payable based on a budget that determines the amount required to maintain the same lifestyle.
What does this mean for your children?
Children are the ones who are most vulnerable during the divorce proceedings. The goal is to shelter them from the conflict, they are just children and should not be burdened with adult issues. That being said in certain cases, where the parents cannot agree on custody, a lawyer is appointed to the child and/or children in order to act as a voice for them. The role of the children’s lawyer is to act as the voice of the child to the court. The children’s lawyer meets with the child to receive a mandate with the child’s wishes as for custody. The goal again is to shelter the child and this avoids the necessity of the child having to testify in court
How to navigate Youth court?
Youth court and the involvement of the Director of Youth Protection in your family is difficult to say the least. We represent both mothers and fathers at the court of Quebec to represent you and defend yours rights and those of your children.
What is a Separation agreement and what does it entail?
We tell all of our clients that the best solution is always settling amicably. Why: minimize your legal fees, reaching a solution together that you made, rather than a judge who has never met you and/or your children. Even if you have gone through lengthy litigation already, it is never too late to find a solution. We always encourage our clients to settle their files
How do I know if I will have a successful civil liability case?
Unexpected accidents happen, they certainly are never planned. However there is most often someone accountable for them, due to negligence or error. We represent clients in their claims against Defendants to sue for damages as a result of prejudice caused by any accident. In Quebec you can sue for both monetary damages and moral damages. During your initial consultation we will discuss the different options and whether or not we think you have a valid claim.
What is Civil litigation?
Litigation is vast, it is talent, you can argue an art, the ability to litigate and fight for your clients rights regardless of the subject matter at hand. Civil litigation covers vast areas of practice such as, successions, hidden defects, construction, real estate.
What impact does the Child’s Opinion have on the determination of custody?
Although the parents and the court do not have to abide by what a child wants, they must always act in their best interest. A parent should always consider a child’s age and the reason for the child’s opinion. A child’s opinion may simple by a reaction to issues that the parents are having or the child may be highly influenced by one of the parents.
By law, in general, a parent must encourage the child to spend time with the other parent and avoid asking the child to choose which parent she wants to be with. A parent must also not lead the child to believe that that her opinion alone will determine custody.
If parents cannot agree upon who should have custody, they may ask an expert or the courts to help them reach a fair and suitable custody agreement in the best interest of the child.
If the question of custody comes before the court, the judge must let the child’s opinion be heard. This can be done through a child’s lawyer, which we usually recommend in order to keep the children as sheltered as possible. Other possibilities also exist, such as having the child speak with the judge outside the courtroom. If the child does decide to testify in front of the judge, someone may assist them while they are on the stand.
The older a child is, and the higher is level of maturity, the more weight a judge will give to their opinion. Once the child is 12 years and over, their opinion plays a significant role. The judge will typically grant teenagers requests in terms of how much time they would like to spend with each parent, subject to certain exceptions.
What is a Conflicts of Loyalty and/ or Parental Alienation?
On occasion, a parent might try to manipulate or influence a child with respect to custody, among other things. A parent will convince or bribe a child to say that they would prefer living with that parent. That parent might also say other things in order to destroy the child’s perception of the other parent and to shed negative light on that parent. That parent’s goal might be to cut the other parent out of their child’s life. Parental alienation can have very detrimental and long-lasting effects on a child, who does not know who to be loyal to.
In less severe cases, some parents manipulate their children by making promises they cannot keep, by bribing their children with gifts or by simply criticizing the other parent.
There are different ways to counter act this type of behavior. Some of the different routes to take are to send a demand letter to the parent who is manipulating the child, asking him or her to stop what they are doing or to get an expert opinion (generally this is done by a psychologist) on the situation. In certain situations, the best way to proceed is to ask a judge to either order the parent to stop alienating the child, to order supervision when the parent is alone with the child or to let that parent spend more time with the child to try and reverse the manipulation that has been occurring.
What are different options for custody
There are really two types of custody: joint custody and sole custody. Sole custody can be exercised with or without visitation rights of the other party.
Joint custody is when a child spends between 40% and 60% of the time with each parent – that is between 146 and 219 days each year.
In order for joint custody to work, it must be in the best interests of the child and both parents must be able to take care of the child, give the child stability, communicate without arguing and live close to each other.
Sole custody is when a child spends more than 60% of the time with one parent only, this is equivalent to more than 219 days each year.
A judge may also decide to give visitation rights to the other parent, which allows the other parent to have contact with the child, regardless of whether or not that parent has custody.
Should we stay married for the kids?
NO! The children feel the stress of the household, and are forced to have the burden of the exposure of parental conflict. Children should have one focus, being a kid, going to school, playing with their friends and having fun. We tell all of our client’s your role in their process is to shelter your children from the conflict and ensure they are safe and happy. Two happy homes is better than one unhappy home.
What do we tell our children?
These are adult issues that you do not need to worry about it. We both love you.
What is Elder Law ?
We are here to ensure that your rights are respected, whether you or a loved one is living in a senior’s residence or in assisted living. We are also available to consult with respect to mandates in anticipation of incapacity and we offer the service of the homologation of mandates. In addition, we can advocate for you in any disputes with health care professionals, landlords, or any third parties.
How does it work if our family does not live in the same place ?
Internationaa Family law. In current times, families have tendencies to move around. We represent clients where one spouse has already moved, either out of province, or out of country. If you were married out of province or country, however have been residing in Quebec for one year, we can represent you for your divorce, separation or any other legal matters you may be dealing with. We also service clients oversees in seeking both child support and/or spousal support with proceedings that need to be instituted in Quebec.
Death is a difficult time for all family members and loved ones, and our intention is to help you get through the process as smoothly as possible. We assist with any family litigation associated with the execution and interpretation of last wills and testaments. We understand very well that family situations can be both complicated and emotional and we are here to help you understand your rights and ensure that they are protected.
What real estate matter do you handle?
We offer innovative and strategic solutions to different real estate issues that you may have. We draft and negotiate contracts and leases. We are here to meet your needs from commercial leasing to real estate litigation.
Can you help us with an immigration file ?
Whether you are looking to sponsor a family member who is living out of the country, or are seeking help in obtaining a work permit, or permanent residency, we can help guide you through the challenging process.