What are “Family Law Practice Notes” and why you need to read them today!

Feeling unsure of how to navigate your claims in family court? Check out the Alberta Court Family Law Practice Notes as a starting point.

The Family Law Practice Notes are a saving grace for those who are unsure of where to begin to prepare for family court. They provide particular directions and strict guidelines for the court’s practice and procedure. It is also a great resource to review every now and then to make sure you are familiar with court practices and what is required of you. The Family Practice Notes are helpful resources for both lawyers and self-represented litigants. They go beyond case law and legislation to ensure you are aware and compliant with current court processes and filing requirements.

There currently 10 separate Family Law Practice Notes that are easily accessible on the Alberta Court’s website (link provided below). Below is a summary of what each of them contain:

  • Family Law Practice Note 1: What is the mandatory “Parenting After Separation Seminar” and why you need to attend it.
  • Family Law Practice Note 2: Essential information regarding Family Law Regular Chambers and Special Chambers. Including, filing requirements for all types of Applications and Cross- Applications under the Divorce Act and the Family Law Act.
  • Family Law Practice Note 3: Objectives of family law conferences, case management information and a Family Law Summary Conference template.
  • Family Law Practice Note 4: Information and procedure for the Edmonton Child Support Resolution Project and the Calgary Dispute Resolution Officer Project.
  • Family Law Practice Note 5: Guidance and templates for family law actions involving allegations of sexual abuse related to parenting or contact matters.
  •  Family Law Practice Note 6: Introduction to international child abduction (“Hague Convention”) and procedure to bring an application in court.
  • Family Law Practice Note 7: Detailed descriptions and procedure for Evaluative Interventions and Therapeutic Interventions conducted by Parenting Experts.
  • Family Law Practice Note 8: Purpose of and the process for a Child Custody/Parenting Evaluation.
  • Family Law Practice Note 9: Intake, Resolution and Caseflow Management information for Calgary and Red Deer.
  • Family Law Practice Note 10: Information and process for accessing court files in family law proceedings.

All of the above-mentioned Family Law Practice Notes can be found at https://albertacourts.ca/qb/areas-of-law/family/practice-notes.

Keep in mind, while the information contained in the Practice Notes are helpful, they are no substitution for comprehensive legal advice. They are a starting ground to assist familiarizing yourself with family court proceedings. Family court can sometimes become overwhelming and complicated very quickly as not all cases follow the same route. There can be serious consequences, such as your matter being dismissed or not heard by the court. Given the significant implications court practice can have on your matter, we suggest obtaining legal advice to better understand what is required of you.

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