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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 03-28-2010, 12:03 AM
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Default Family Court Judges in Ottawa

I recently had my first case conference in Ottawa.

Before that day, my lawyer had indicated that there are several judges in Ottawa that (as a man) you would rather not have in front of you. As luck would have it, the judge that we were assigned on that day, according to my lawer, was an activist feminist (great! Not! I thought). My lawyer tells me, "Trust me, you don't want to go in that court room". So he manages to talk to my ex's lawyer and somehow it was decided that they would both go in the court room without us, to talk to the judge. They were there for about 5 minutes. When they came out, they had some kind of hand written piece of paper telling us that we had to get more financial details about this and that. Well that day cost me $5k, and I felt like nothing was accomplished.

The next day, I spoke to my ex-wife about our experience in court. Neither one of us were impressed. She also told me that her lawyer had also told her about some of the judges in Ottawa, and that she would rather not be in front of. My ex also told me that her lawyer had said "If we get a judge that's not good for us, one of us will have to call in sick."!!!

To the above, I say "THIS IS SICK". What I'm getting from this, is that judges in Ottawa are either for the "man" or for the "woman". What happened to being fair / being objective / TO JUSTICE!!!

Can anyone out there comment on this? Is this really how it is? Is it the same elsewhere?

JDaddy
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Old 03-28-2010, 08:44 AM
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I've been in the Ottawa courthouse 3 times. First time was a male, and than 2 females. All 3 times I've felt the judge was fair. The last two times it was a female judge and they had read all (ALL) of the documentation.

So depending on the issues, maybe you were both taken for a ride. I suspect your wife paid approximently 5grand, so thats 10grand out..

mominont
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Old 03-28-2010, 09:49 AM
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Feminism is about fighting gender bias in society. That includes removing bias in the law and the courts that result in things like awarding full custody to mothers because they are mothers. This isn't just my opinion, this is explained to me by my lawyer, it was part of my case, and my female judge has awarded joint custody and child support and spousal support and one of the issues we've brought up is specificly gender bias.

"Activist" feminism means not just addressing bias on a case by case basis, but working to make broad changes in society to correct the results of previous generation's bias. I can't imagine a situation where it would be within a judge's power on your case to be "activist".

For generations men have acted as the breadwinner, women the caregiver, men have paid child support and spousal support, and women have gotten custody. That has been due to the bias of social roles. No actual feminist would deny that roles like that hurt men as much as they hurt women.

A feminist judge should be working to remove the bias of those roles and make a gender neutral decision. Humans still make mistakes, I'm not saying anyone is perfect. But saying that a man will get screwed because of "activist feminist" judges is just plain stupid.

Edit to add: JDaddy, I'm not saying you are stupid, I'm saying your lawyers are. Or at least acting stupid.
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Old 03-28-2010, 10:45 AM
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Here is a post I made in another thread that bears repeating here:

I've said this on this board many times and I will say it again:

While one would be foolish to think that gender bias does not exist in the courts, the reason Moms get disproportionate levels of custody is that they are still the primary caregivers of children. Go to the kindergarten doors at your local school at pick and drop off times. While there are more and more Dads doing the pick up and drop offs, I'd guess 75% of the parents there are Moms. Of course that isn't conclusive on it's own, but it's an indicator.

That said, Dad's who give up because the stats favour Mom aren't doing themselves and their kids any favours. If you are willing to pour yourself into it, leave no stone unturned, be child-centred and work that extra bit harder to counter act the presence of some gender bias, you can be successful. The stakes will never in your life be higher. If one isn't wiling to do it for one's kids, then what does that say about one's moral fibre?
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