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Law Maven
Law Maven, Lawyer
Category: Canada Family Law
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Experience:  Lawyer & Instructor at Algonquin Careers Academy
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I have a Family Law question - specifically regarding the

Customer Question

My name is ***** ***** I have a Family Law question - specifically regarding the Settlement Brief I'm the respondent to a damend from my ex-wife to have my income imputed and several other punitive points. I'm trying to establish what to do in #8 under Part 2: Issues: 8. What are the issues for the settlement conference? What are the important facts? Basically my question is under question 8 do I respond to her 21 points of background and claims/allegations in a point-by-point manner, or do I provide my own background and explain why the claims/allegations are unjust?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Canada Family Law
Expert:  Law Maven replied 1 year ago.

Hello – my name is***** am a family lawyer in Ontario, and I’ll be happy to help with your question today.

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It sounds like you are dealing with Ontario court forms, if you are in a different province please let me know and I will see if the following answer needs to be modified.

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At a settlement conference the Court is looking for information to help the parties settle any matters that can be settled, and to get the information needed so that whatever matters are not settled can be dealt with in a motion or at trial with all the relevant information before the Court at that time. The Court is unlikely to make an order imputing income at a Settlement Conference unless you have provided the Court with absolutely no financial information at all (or unless the financials you have provided seem improper).

So the most important evidence to argue against imputing income is to have filed clear and accurate financial records, and to have kept them up to date throughout the proceedings. The Family Court Rules specify that before any new proceeding (including Conferences) if the previous financial records are more than a month old, the parties should file new reports, or an affidavit stating that nothing has changed since the previous finances were filed.

Expert:  Law Maven replied 1 year ago.

Once you're sure that the financial side is up to date, for the Conference Brief you need to consider both the issues that the other side has raised and any issues you wish to raise yourself. So for every specific claim your ex has made, you need to give your reasons why that claim should not be granted. That can be a direct contradiction of an allegation she has made, or it can be a series of statements from your point of view that show that her allegation is not likely to be true or unbiased. Once you have addressed her claims --and you don't need to address every allegation, if the allegation doesn't support a specific claim, ignore it-- then address your own claims. What do YOU want? Set out each claim separately and give the background information necessary to support that claim from your point of view.

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You can make this easier for a Judge to follow by using small headings ... just bold, nothing fancy! But if you break it down by Wife's claim 1, claim 2, etc., then Husband's claim 1, claim 2, etc., the Judge will have an easier time understanding what you're saying. Generally Judges like it when materials are clear and focused, rather than a jumble of allegations and claims with no particular organization. Instead of "wife's" claim, you can say "plaintiff's claim" or "Ms. LastName's" claim ... whatever you prefer. Also make it clear what the 1, 2, 3, are. So as an example:

  • "Plaintif's claim for spousal support"
  • "Defendant's claim for property division"

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I hope I have fully answered your question, but please do not hesitate to ask for more information if needed. When you are satisfied with the answer, kindly provide me a positive rating so I can receive credit for my answer.

My answer here contains only general legal information and not legal advice. No solicitor/client relationship has been created by this communication.

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