Kawartha Lakes Family Lawyer

Some of the most sensitive issues that families face have legal implications. Ensuring you handle them in a way that complies with all applicable laws requires the services of a skilled Kawartha Lakes family lawyer.

A legal practitioner who handles family law matters could advise you on cohabitation and marriage contracts, separation and divorce, international divorce, adoption, and protection orders against domestic violence. Paul Riley’s extensive legal knowledge, personal empathy, and 24/7 availability makes him an excellent choice to handle your family law matter.

Preparing Contracts and Agreements

Written agreements can provide a roadmap that guides a relationship and eases its dissolution if that time comes. A capable legal professional in Kawartha Lakes could draft, negotiate, or review any contract pertaining to family matters.

Cohabitation Agreements

Couples who live together without getting married often combine their funds and other assets. One person might even be financially dependent on the other. If you and your partner are unmarried, you need protection in the event the relationship ends. Ideally, a couple would not move in together before seeking a cohabitation agreement.

Note that an Ontario couple living together as intimate partners for at least three years meets the requirements for common-law marriage. If they have a child, they must cohabitate for only one year to establish a common-law marriage. A cohabitation agreement could define your rights and responsibilities toward each other if you do not want the laws pertaining to divorce to guide a breakup with your partner.

Marriage Contracts

You and your partner can create marriage contracts before or after marriage. These contracts, also known as prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, can address a range of financial issues.

However, marital agreements cannot address issues related to child custody, parenting time, or decision-making authority. You must make decisions related to children at the time you separate. If you cannot agree, a court will decide what arrangements serve the best interests of the children. Marriage contracts also cannot address spousal support.

According to the Family Law Act s. 35, courts will enforce marital agreements if they meet the applicable legal requirements and if they are fair. Fair does not mean that each party benefits equally but that each party knew what the contract meant and elected to sign without pressure or duress.

Separation Agreements

If you and your spouse decide to end your relationship, Ontario law requires you to separate for at least one year before you file for divorce. Many couples create a separation agreement to guide their lives apart. The separation agreement could serve as a template for the agreements a judge will incorporate into an official divorce decree.

Separation agreements can address any outstanding issues regarding the marital home and property that were not settled in a marriage contract. Unlike a marital agreement, separation agreements can and should address parenting time, decision-making authority, spousal support, and child support.

Dispute Resolution During Divorce

If you have a contested divorce, you must reach agreements on all relevant matters before a trial, or a judge will decide. Making every effort to develop agreements or compromise before a trial is wise because it keeps decision-making about sensitive personal issues in your hands instead of giving a judge full authority.

A committed Kawartha Lakes family lawyer could advise you through mediation, collaborative divorce, or another form of alternate dispute resolution. In many cases, they could work with the other spouse’s legal representatives to reach acceptable agreements. Negotiated divorces keep costs down, limit stress and rancor, and conclude more quickly than litigated divorces.

Skilled Representation During Litigation

Sometimes it is necessary to bring matters before a judge for a decision. In such cases, having an experienced litigator to represent your interests is critical.

A dedicated family lawyer in Kawartha Lakes could protect your rights and preserve your relationship with your children if you are named in a child protection matter. They could represent you if you wish to seek or defend an order of protection in a domestic violence case. Divorces, adoptions, and other matters could require the services of an experienced family law litigator, like Paul Riley.

Rely on a Kawartha Lakes Family Lawyer

Family law practice requires compassion, empathy, legal knowledge, negotiating skills, and courtroom savvy. You will find all those qualities in Kawartha Lakes family lawyer, Paul Riley.

He is available 24/7 whenever a legal issue intersects with your family life. Call now to speak with our diligent legal professional.

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