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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 11-02-2020, 12:52 PM
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Tayken Tayken is offline
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Default Pazaratz - What a difference a day makes.

http://canlii.ca/t/j9xn6

SUPERIOR COURT OF JUSTICE - ONTARIO
RE: H.P., Applicant AND L.V., Respondent
BEFORE: The Honourable Mr. Justice A. Pazaratz
HEARD: October 2, 2020

Very interesting case and short and to the point. Justice Pazaratz provides some insight into some of the questions that often get asked here and how judges see them.

Quote:
[7] But – as happens on many of these early motions – even though the parents have presented dramatically different recollections of the past, their proposals for future timesharing arrangements are remarkably similar. So similar that it really raises a question about whether the parents needed to say so many bad things about one another if so little was in dispute.

[8] The bottom line: they both agree there should be generous timesharing – including mid-week overnights -- with no controls or restrictions on either parent’s involvement with the children.
a. The Applicant proposes a two-week rotating schedule – often described as 2-2-3 – which would give him 7 out of 14 overnights with the children.

b. The Respondent proposes a repeating one-week schedule which would give the father 6 out of 14 overnights with the children.

c. Why did we need so many expensive, destructive affidavits – why did I need to hear all the hurtful allegations that people will remember forever – if the only thing in dispute is a single overnight every two weeks?
[9] The only thing that matters in this senseless tug of war is the best interests of the children. And I heard nothing within the litany of mutual complaints which would favour one parent’s position over the other’s.

a. If six overnights is fine, why would seven overnights be unthinkable?

b. If seven overnights is fine, why would six overnights be unthinkable?

c. In either scenario, the experience for the children is going to be very similar.

d. This dispute isn’t really about what’s best for the children.

e. It’s about winning and losing, and what each parent feels is best for them.

f. We need to take the “winning” and “losing” out of family court.

g. That’s what’s best for the children.
... more...

Quote:
[14] So we’re back to a one day difference every two weeks. And truthfully, no matter which of those options I select, I have confidence that the children will be fine.
a. It’s not the “one day” that’s going to ruin these children’s lives.

b. It’s the senseless, bitter dispute about the one day that’s going to ruin these children’s lives.
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Old 11-04-2020, 10:18 AM
Gilligan Gilligan is offline
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Maybe I'm jaded... and I fully agree with the point the judge makes here.

But... the difference of a day IS about winning and loosing when you look at financial consequences of support as a result of that decision.
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Old 11-04-2020, 10:30 AM
tilt tilt is offline
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Except it shouldn’t, six nights out of 14 is above 40% and almost 50% so CS would be offset in either case.

It sounds like the dispute is also about which days of the week the parenting time occurs though, since one is the 2-2-3 and one was a weekly schedule. Maybe one schedule works best for one parent (they have a set commitment every weekend and would love for the kids to be at the co-parent’s every weekend) and one worked better for the other parent. In this case, the mother had concerns about the children getting to school from the two different residences and the use of childcare (unnecessary if she was looking after the children). With the Paediatrician’s comments and the CAS involvement I am surprised she agreed to 50/50; she was probably told she wouldn’t have a chance at primary parenting but her litigation strategy was as though she was still going for it (as this is temp temp non prejudice I am sure she is going to use this time to gather more evidence and push for the primary parenting at trial).

Courts are sooo not the place for abusive parents to work out parenting. But we don’t really have an alternative right now. We’ll be seeing this family back in court pretty quick.

Last edited by tilt; 11-04-2020 at 10:43 AM.
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Old 11-04-2020, 11:08 AM
LovingDad1234 LovingDad1234 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tilt View Post
Courts are sooo not the place for abusive parents to work out parenting. But we don’t really have an alternative right now. We’ll be seeing this family back in court pretty quick.
Some parents are hellbent about "winning" regardless of the cost or process. Many on here will tell you stories about how they went through a court battle for years to only land on what they originally offered to the other side from Day 1. Judges are getting pretty good at calling out bad players in court.

You should not be in court arguing over 1 day. Grown adults should be able to sit at a table and work out a solution rather than ask a judge to make decisions for them, paying court costs and often exorbitant lawyer fees. Going to court is basically saying "Judge, we are grown adults but cannot work together, therefore we need you, another adult who has his/her head on straight, to make decisions for us". Its somewhat embarrassing. Some people think of court as their first option, it should be the LAST option after every other possibility of resolving the conflict has been explored.

But then again, most are in court because 1 or 2 parents are set in their ways and cannot put down their swords. Often, their focus is more about hurting the other parent, or to prove they are right at all costs, which they don't realize is actually hurting the kid(s) they claim to love so much. Read the case law about the couple in Hamilton who blew a combined $550k in legal fees in the battle for the kids----Justice Pazaratz called both parents idiots for blowing away that kind of money that could have been used to provide a great life to the kids.
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Old 11-04-2020, 01:46 PM
tilt tilt is offline
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Oh I agree, the focus on “hurting the ex more than you love your kids” is something that Judge SHOULD address, but they aren’t.

Judges let parents get away with not paying child support, withholding access, asking for constant adjournments etc, as long as the high conflict parent stays *just* this side of pissing the judge off (suddenly paying the costs or CS or allowing access the day before an appearance is looked at as a *good* thing by the Judge that day, then the next day the high conflict parent does it again knowing that motion dates are months in the future and will cost the parent $5-10,000 just to enforce an existing Order.

And the Lawyers that encourage and teach these tactics should lose their licences. There a lots of good lawyers out there - it must be frustrating for them to see their reputations ruined by the money-hungry yahoos that only take direction from their clients.
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Old 11-04-2020, 02:02 PM
Gilligan Gilligan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tilt View Post
And the Lawyers that encourage and teach these tactics should lose their licences. There a lots of good lawyers out there - it must be frustrating for them to see their reputations ruined by the money-hungry yahoos that only take direction from their clients.
I couldn't agree more... I wish judges would deal with this behavior more, it seems that it's rewarded in family court unfortunately.
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Old 11-04-2020, 05:34 PM
Stillbreathing Stillbreathing is offline
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I agree with tilt and add to that, why does the judge even bother commenting on this problem if they aren’t going to do anything about it? Sort of like an emergency surgeon looking at the CAT scan and saying, “looks like there’s a parasite inside the patient’s brain that’s causing all the problems but I’ll just let the parasite and the patient work it out”.

If you have a high conflict ex keeping the litigation going, don’t blame BOTH litigants! The judge should take decisive action against the high conflict litigant to discourage them from continuing on this path, not just make useless observational comments. That’s what judge’s are paid for.
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Old 11-05-2020, 08:12 AM
Helpmyspouse Helpmyspouse is offline
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Sorry but I blame the lawyers because they can get away with it lining their own pockets. It's not what's best for the children, or What's best for the parent, it's what is best for the lawyers. The family law system is broken and it allows for lawyers to gain when parents are high conflict. I agree with the other poster that the judge will do nothing to bring change he has only stated the obvious ....like Batman. If you have an out of control toddler the parent should be resolving the issue. If you have out of control litigants the lawyers should be in a position to stop the nonsense. But they won't because of the financial gains involved. So how about the family law system get a massive overhaul and include provisions where lawyers get penalized for bleeding a family of their life savings???? Ain't gonna happen anytime soon.
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Old 11-05-2020, 09:06 AM
rockscan rockscan is offline
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There are bad lawyers but I would argue that bad litigants outnumber the bad lawyers. When someone is angry and determined they tend to throw reason out the window. Many lawyers do caution their clients on how expensive something will be but in the end they are not therapists and cannot make a client stop behaving in a manner that the court deems wrong. Hell there have been people on this forum who have lashed out at other posters when they were simply saying the same thing they would hear from a judge. You cant fix stupid and unfortunately the courts get stuck with it.

I do agree that there needs to be greater punishment from the bench on unreasonable behaviour. Especially considering how backlogged the court is. If they had someone rejecting unreasonable filings and telling people no you arent entitled to that, I bet there would be less cases. If they had penalties for bad behaviour there may be even less filings!


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Old 11-05-2020, 10:39 AM
tilt tilt is offline
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Lawyers cannot stop clients from behaving in a way that violates Rule 2, but they can choose to stop representing them. But some lawyers do seek out those clients because they are very profitable for very little work - just keep filing for adjournments, sit in settlement conferences where they will agree to nothing (including things their own client demanded!), use sharp practise against SRL etc (I have had TWO judges chastise my ex’s lawyers for sharp practise and providing deliberately misleading info - but no financial penalty to the lawyer to discourage them - yes they continued being assholes)
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