Estate & Family Law Blog

Family law solutions can keep kids away from courtroom drama


It is an unfortunate fact that many couples who choose to divorce cannot work together to make a clean break. This can be especially difficult when children are involved. Generally, both parties want the best for their kids; if they can’t agree what that looks like, it is often left to a judge to decide. With family lawalternatives available in British Columbia, there are other options to litigation which may be preferable for a child’s well-being.

A divorced mother and father were in court in 2015, after five years of battling over their children. The father had been attempting to gain access to his children and had gone to court approximately 100 times seeking a resolution, alleging that his ex had turned the kids against him. In August 2014, the judge presiding over the case ordered the children to begin seeing their father.

In a 2015 hearing, the judge heard the children, then aged 14, 10 and 9 years old, had refused to visit with their father despite the judge’s order. She found the children to be in contempt of court and had all three sent to a juvenile detention facility for two weeks. They were later moved to a summer camp.

This case is an extreme and unusual example, of course, and the judge has since been disciplined for her conduct. However, it is representative of what can happen when parents cannot come together to plan their children’s future. Divorced parents may wish to take advantage of alternative dispute resolution techniques offered by a family law firm, instead of allowing the British Columbia courts to make decisions for them.

Source: The Detroit News, “Commission: Oakland Co. judge should be suspended“, Jennifer Chambers, Nov. 15, 2016

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