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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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  #1  
Old 11-20-2019, 12:46 PM
EspoirN EspoirN is offline
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Question Children's lawyer

Situation:
I have two kids, daughter 10 and son 17. Son has not spoken to his father in almost 4 years as a result of mistreatment, psychological, physical. My husband moved out last year, when I said we needed to separate, he did not disclose his whereabouts, he was out of the country and in another province, he reappeared 9 months later immediately after he received by email my application for divorce. Before we separated, he said he did not want any part of the house (which is completely in my name, he avoided all financial responsibilities), he did not want custody, now he wants it all and including spousal support. He claims he has no earnings, but I have proof that he has. He was ordered by court to provide financial disclosure, but he only filed a short statement that he has no earnings. He also owns an apartment abroad, about which he lied to the court. The apartment is solely in his name, I got the proof, he states he does not. In my original application for divorce I did not know that he would go after spousal support and the house, I thought he would concede (as verbally agreed), therefore I did not put a claim to his apartment or child support. I also did not disclose the mistreatment of the children, refusal to provide emergency medical care, physical abuse, emotional abuse, making disparaging comments about me to my son, attempted/threatened me that he will commit suicide, withheld his earnings from me when he was not talking to me, disappeared. I did not disclose any of this in my original application, however, I have disclosed them in my reply to his Answer. Now I would like to amend my application for divorce, so that it includes cruelty (is it worth it?), and so that it includes the child abuse as reason for me to get sole custody. I also think I should ask for a children's lawyer (or should I?).
Questions:
Under what circumstances would I request a children's lawyer regarding custody? If I don't request one, could the Court appoint one for me? If I do request one, what are the wait times? If I request a children's lawyer, could I schedule a settlement conference without a report of the children's lawyer? Or should I wait for the report of the children's lawyer? or could I resolve financial and child support issues at one settlement conference, and the custody issue at another settlement conference once the children's lawyer's report is in. I cannot afford a lawyer, I am in debt and reached my credit limits because I receive no child support. However, I do not qualify for legal aid. My husband lies about his income, but has hired a lawyer. He has supervised access through the family centre, but the wait times are long, so no visits took place yet.

Last edited by EspoirN; 11-20-2019 at 12:54 PM. Reason: forgot to include some information
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  #2  
Old 11-20-2019, 01:35 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Default Children's lawyer

There is a lot to unpack here so let’s divide it out...

1. You obviously filed for divorce. Did you file for support and custody? Or was it simply a motion for divorce?

2. I am going to assume his RESPONSE was a request for custody, support and spousal correct? That’s just his response and he will have to prove his case.

Split out:

Custody—your 17 yo gets to decide and no court will force him to go with a parent he doesn’t want to live with. The real matter will be your daughter but if he currently has supervised access the likelihood of him getting full custody before she turns 15 is slim to none. Take a breath.

Child support—he will be required to pay cs for both kids and section 7. If you know what he is capable of making, request the court impute an income on him.

Spousal support—he will need to prove entitlement. Which means he will need to demonstrate to the court that he sacrificed his career for the sake of yours. Meaning he stayed home with the kids while your career advanced, he moved with you for your career, he lost jobs because of your career etc.

Equalization—do up a mock chart of assets and liabilities at marriage and separation. More than likely the net worth of the calculation will be nil.

Now your questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by EspoirN View Post
Questions:
Under what circumstances would I request a children's lawyer regarding custody?
Don’t. Your only issue is your 10 yo and he is already in supervised access with her. Not worth it.

Quote:
If I don't request one, could the Court appoint one for me?
They could but your case is pretty straightforward. Not worth the time.

Quote:
If I do request one, what are the wait times?
Depends on your location, resources and if your ex cooperates.

Quote:
if I request a children's lawyer, could I schedule a settlement conference without a report of the children's lawyer?
Don’t request one. Simply request an order for full custody in your matter.

Quote:
Or should I wait for the report of the children's lawyer?
See above. Waste of time.

Quote:
or could I resolve financial and child support issues at one settlement conference, and the custody issue at another settlement conference once the children's lawyer's report is in.
Have you had a conference? Have you spoken with a judge? Has a judge told your ex what to expect?

Quote:
My husband lies about his income, but has hired a lawyer. He has supervised access through the family centre, but the wait times are long, so no visits took place yet.

If you have proof he is lying then he will look bad. People who play games and pull stupid crap almost always get called out for it.

If you want to make yourself look good, you could offer supervised access with a family member. If he has a parent or sibling you trust, let him have time with them there.

You could also request he attend therapy or parenting classes.

He will ask for everything and the kitchen sink. It is standard with petty, difficult and unreasonable people. Take a deep breath and remember you have a strong case. Best advice is to gather all your evidence. Do some searching on canlii.org on key words in your case for more help. Put together your case and go to a conference. Follow what the judge says and go from there.
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  #3  
Old 11-20-2019, 02:23 PM
EspoirN EspoirN is offline
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We already had a case conference in September. Judge issued an order for supervised access, and gave him 45 days for full financial disclosure, cash earnings (said had 0$), bank statements (he provided 3). Now it would be time to request a settlement conference, but I am pondering on whether I should amend my application for divorce.


1. In my original application I requested child support if his income is above $12,000 per year, which I am now sure it is. He is a handyman, while we were married, he always reported his income low, and never worked full time, but it was because he was lazy, my mom stayed with the kids after school and helped with cooking, he did not do any of this. This past month, now,of all people, he got a gig renovating my next door-neighbour's (semidetached house) home. He spent 10 days installing floors and doing renos, at the same time as he submitted his statement to court that he is homeless and does room and board while he renovates a person's home. Well, for those 10 days, he did not room and board with my neighbour. 950Sq ft of hardwood, at 2$ per sq ft, that is an income of at least $1800 in 10 days. With his current earning he is able to pay a lawyer (lawyer that speaks his language, because in the 27 years he lived in this country, he did not learn to speak English fluently).


I am considering amending my application (form 8) so that I can ask the court to impute income. Is it worth amending my application for that? Or, could I simply request the imputation of income in my settlement conference brief?


2. Yes, in his response he asked for shared custody, spousal support, child support, equalization of assets. I did not request spousal support (I earn $67K, he earns about $10-20K per year, never made an effort to take on more contracts). Again, is it worth it to amend my application in order to now request equalization of assets?
Could I request equalization of assets in my settlement conference brief without changing my application (not having claimed equalization in my original application).


3. He used to drive under the influence, often with my son when he was younger. After he almost had an accident (swerved off the road and nearly hit a fence, when my son was 12), I did not allow him to take my son on any more outings by car. My husband's other issues were disappearing from the house whenever he felt like it after an argument, for the night, or days sometimes. Sometimes he was violent to me in front of the children. At the case conference in September, he refused supervised access supervised by my friends. I then proposed close mutual friends, which he declined during the case conference, so the judge ordered the family centre until he finds a permanent place to live (he claims he is homeless). When he was renovating at my neighbour's, several times (stalking out of the neighbour's garage under the pretext of working there), he intercepted my daughter coming from school (with my mom) and demanding to see her. During those 10 days, he also sent me harassing emails, to which I replied politely, and referred him to the court order, and warned him to stop stalking me.


I would change my application so that I am covered from all sides regarding my claims, however, I just want to get this over with, and do not want to drag this process since it is affecting my health, my blood pressure is high now due to all the stress. So ideally, I would like to get sole custody, I don't want anything from him as long as I can just preserve my house for the kids, and not have to see him ever again.


I will be grateful if I could be advised on the following:


Can I claim equalization of assets, and his apartment at the settlement conference without amending my divorce application (form 8)?? I filed for divorce under the premise (our verbal agreement/talk) that he would not claim the house, and nothing was said about custody, but it was understood that I was always the one who took the kids to the doctor, communicated with the teachers, took the kids to the hospital for medical emergencies, made literally ALL the decisions for them because of his lack of interest, claim to ignorance (he always said "you know better"), and apathy, neglect, and abandonment. I have many facts to prove this, but for the purpose of my questions, it is not necessary to list.
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2019, 02:43 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Let go all the shit you did during the marriage. Its not worth your stress. I would also suggest reaching out to your local mental health organization to see about therapy. If you have an EAP at work, go through them. It will help.

I would still book another conference. I think you can file for divorce but you may need to have the financial stuff settled first.
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Old 11-20-2019, 02:47 PM
EspoirN EspoirN is offline
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But I already filed for divorce, last May (form 8). What I am wandering now, is if I should amend my application (form 8). Would seeking equalization of assets be seen as a new claim on my part (if I did not seek it in my original application)?
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  #6  
Old 11-20-2019, 03:55 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Did you not do a financial statement and whatever the form is for equalization? You would have had to do a financial document outlining value of assets/liabilities on marriage and separation dates. Did you not seek child support at that time? Did the judge not ask at the last conference?
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Old 11-20-2019, 04:00 PM
EspoirN EspoirN is offline
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Yes I did. Form 13.1. But my husband put no assets and no income in his (except my home) so the judge issued an order for him to disclose income. He still claims he doesn’t have an apartment. I have proof that this is not so. However, Will this proof be given consideration even though I did not claim half his apartment in the original application for divorce ??
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Old 11-20-2019, 04:28 PM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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Has he provided his disclosure in response or is there still time before a deadline?

I would add all your proof to your next conference brief. I would also complete a 13b net family property statement and add it to your filing. If you know the value of his assets he had during the marriage.
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  #9  
Old 11-20-2019, 04:36 PM
EspoirN EspoirN is offline
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The deadline was a month ago. He provided a short statement, no documentary evidence except for bank statements for 3months. He was still singing the same tune, no income, homeless, doing jobs for room/board. Denying that he owns the apartment abroad, although I have very recent proof that he does. So you think that I should proceed to the settlement conference, and there is no need to waste time with procedural motion to amend my application, correct?
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  #10  
Old 11-21-2019, 07:57 PM
standing on the sidelines standing on the sidelines is offline
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what is your proof that he owns the apartment building?
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