Oshawa Family Lawyers Representing Clients in the Courtroom
At Borden Family Law, we have dedicated our 17 years of legal experience to practicing family law and family law only. For close to two decades we have helped thousands of clients in Oshawa and Durham region find an efficient resolution to their family law issue. We strive to resolve matters out of court whenever possible, but, if necessary, we will advocate for your rights at trial. We have extensive litigation experience and will fight for the best interests of you and your children.
It is always a good idea to consult with and retain a knowledgeable family lawyer before you start a family law matter or file an application, in order to fully understand the process, learn what you can expect, analyze your options, and make a plan for moving forward. In our experience, informed clients make what is a stressful process run much smoother.
What to Expect in a Family Law Claim
The person starting a family case is called the applicant. The other person responding to the application is called the respondent.
Starting a case involves making an application to the court explaining what you would like the court to do, for example, determine child custody and access, issue a divorce, order spousal support, or order all three.
The application provides important background information about the history of your relationship with your partner or spouse and any children you have. It also sets out the facts that you are relying on to support your request, such as your income and your partner’s or spouse’s income.
Once your application is filed, the other party, referred to as the respondent, has the opportunity to review the application materials and to respond to the application.
If you are a respondent, filing your response gives you the opportunity to tell the court:
- What you do and do not agree with in the application;
- Your version of the history of the relationship; and,
- What order you think the court should make in the circumstances.
The Case Conference
Depending on where you file your claim, you may also have to attend a Case Conference. This is a chance for you and your family lawyer to meet with the judge, your partner or spouse, and their counsel to talk about the progress of the case and to discuss ways in which some, or all, of the matters might be resolved before going to trial.
Case conferences also give the judge the chance to make sure you and the other party have provided each other and the court with all the necessary information and documents required to move your case forward.
The Settlement Conference
If you are not able to settle all of the issues at the Case Conference, the next step in the process is usually a Settlement Conference.
Before a Settlement Conference, the parties must exchange settlement conference briefs and other supporting information (for example, net family property statements). At a Settlement Conference, the judge will usually discuss the issues that are in dispute, the parties’ positions on those issues, and ways in which the issues can be resolved.
At any time after the Case Conference, one side or the other may make a motion to the court asking for a quick decision on an issue such as where the children will live until a final decision or ruling is made.
This decision, often called an Interim Order, can be temporary or final and is normally made based on affidavits – written, sworn statements from each party.
Finally, if any outstanding issues remain after the Case Conference and Settlement Conference, or if no resolution was reached, you will have to go to trial.
During the court proceedings, you may also be asked to attend a questioning session, called a deposition. It is held in a boardroom with both each party’s lawyers present. You will be asked a series of questions so the opposing counsel can better prepare their questions and know ahead of time what you might say. A court reporter will also be there to transcribe your answers. You must answer truthfully.
When you finally get to court – and it can take years before a care makes it to trial – each side will make their arguments and present cases in which similar issues may have been decided.
Witnesses may be called and you may have to testify.
The judge will make a final decision based on the information and evidence presented at trial.The decision will be set out in a written judgment but the judge may give a verbal ruling in court and follow up with a written judgment.
Contact the Experienced Oshawa Family Lawyers at Borden Family Law for Skillful and Effective Legal Representation at Trial
At Borden Family Law, we have been representing clients in family law matters for 17 years. Trial is rarely our first option. Before taking this step, we tirelessly pursue settlements or engage in alternative dispute resolution. If an agreement cannot be reached through these options, we will go to court. If trial is necessary, we will skillfully represent you and will fight for your interests, and those of your children. We serve clients in Oshawa, Brooklin, Pickering, and the surrounding areas. To learn how we can help you resolve your issue, call us at 905-576-6090 or contact us online. Ask about our flat fees and bundled packages.