Wednesday, September 08, 2010

British Columbia Proposes Massive Family Law Overhaul

The most recent issue of The Lawyers' Weekly reports that the government of British Columbia is proposing a very ambitious reform of family law in the province. According to the article, B.C. poised for a massive family law overhaul:
"Common law couples who split up will have the same rights to property and pension division as married couples do. Separated parents will enjoy 'guardianship' and 'parenting time' rather than custody or access. Parenting co-coordinators will be empowered to arbitrate the day-to-day disputes of high-conflict families. Misbehaving ex-spouses will be slapped with 'conduct orders,' fines and jail time. And 'posthumously-conceived' children will have the same rights to inherit as other children."

"Those are among the cutting-edge, and sometimes controversial, solutions to a host of thorny family law problems that British Columbia is proposing for its impending total overhaul of the Family Relations Act (FRA)."

"Following more than three years of intensive research and policy development, on July 19 the B.C. Ministry of the Attorney General unveiled a 'white paper' proposing a complete update of its 1978 statute ..."
The white paper is available on the government website.

The purpose of the white paper is to provide the public opportunity to comment on the proposed new family law. The consultation ends Oct. 8, 2010.

The review of the province's Family Relations Act began in 2006 with research into family law reform underway in other jurisdictions, as well as recommendations for reform made by family law experts. In 2007, the government published 14 discussion papers for consultation. In 2009, it published representative responses to the consultation documents.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 8:27 pm

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