Annual Report 2017/2018

  • July 05, 2018

Summary of Meetings: Family Law - Fraser Valley

Number of Meetings Held: 6

Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Guest Speaker: The Honourable Judge Robert Norman Hamilton, Provincial Court of BC (Surrey) and senior staff members form the Provincial Court Registries.
Meeting Title/Topic: Practice and Procedure in Provincial Court: Comments from the Bench and Registry
Synopsis: The below topics were discussed:
●   Will the court accept written request for a judge to approve an order for entry where the self-rep has refused or failed to approve the form as pronounced which in the normal course would require a formal application to resolve?
●   What reason is accepted as urgency sufficient to permit an interim motion for relief (other than a “protection order”)?
●   At the appearance on an interim application can the court provide directions as to the form of evidence required (affidavit or viva voce)?
●   Can the court accept an agreement at an FCC as to support as sufficient to constitute a consent order without a formal hearing? Will the court accept a written direction prior to a hearing date to adjourn general “by consent” and thereby avoid the need to appear in court?
●   Can the court specify a procedure to enable a date to be set by phone or written memorandum?

Wednesday, November 29, 2017
Guest Speaker: W. Martin Finch, QC, Baker Newby LLP,
Philip Riddell, Philip A. Riddell Law Corporation,
Benchers of the Law Society of British Columbia
Meeting Title/Topic: Ethics and Professional Responsibility in Family Law
Synopsis: The agenda of this meeting was as follows:
●  Attendance and Section welcome & updates
●  Benchers update
●  Introduction to speakers
●  Main presentation and dinner (ethics and professional responsibility)
●  Open discussion
●  Meeting closing

Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Guest Speaker: Lisa Hamilton, Bencher, Law Society of BC
Meeting Title/Topic: Excluded Property After VJF v. SKW
Synopsis: Ms. Hamilton will be discussing the below topics:
●  Updates in the case law on Excluded Property since VJF . For example, the case of Shih v. Shih, 2017 BCCA 37 adds some interesting new directions in regards to what is necessary to prove and trace excluded property.
●  What evidence is needed to prove excluded property?
●  Excluded Property claims – how can counsel plan and prepare to make and defend such claims?
●  Section 95 of the FLA and “significantly unfair” - what do we know from the case law thus far? How do we as counsel prove significant unfairness?

Wednesday, March 28, 2018
Guest Speaker: The Honourable Master Keighley, British Columbia Supreme Court
The Honourable Master Caldwell, British Columbia Supreme Court
Meeting Title/Topic: Chambers Practice in Family Law
Synopsis: The Honourable Master Keighley and the Honourable Master Caldwell discussed the below topics:
●  Applications for interim distributions of assets;
●  Applications for cost/fine/penalty pursuant to section 212 of the Family Law Act;
●  Applications for disclosure;
●  Applictions for interim relief under the Family Law Act and the Supreme Court Family Rulesgenerally; and
●  Any other chambers practice topics currently of concern to the bench.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Guest Speaker:The Honourable Mr. Justice Leask, former Judge of the Supreme Court of British Columbia
Meeting Title/Topic: A View in the Rear View Mirror: Procedural Impacts of the Family Law Act and Supreme Court Family Rules
Synopsis: The Honourable Mr. Justice Leask discussed the following topics:
●  Has the promulgation of the FLA and the SCFRs both in 2013 positively influenced Family Law litigation? In particular, with respect to speeding and facilitating the conduct of family litigation, the implementation of ADR (S224 etc.), the accommodation of SRLs?
●   What Impediments are there to the application of S224?
●  How effective are JCCs, TMCs, and Settlement Conferences from the point of view of both the Bench and the Bar?
●  Should there be active consideration of the implementation of a specialized Bench and/or a UFC?

Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Guest Speaker: The Honourable Jon Sigurdson, Former Supreme Court Judge
The Honourable Lynn Smith, Former Supreme Court Judge and Dean of UBC Law
The Honourable Bruce Cohen, Former Supreme Court Judge.
Meeting Title/Topic: Matters of Practice Before the Court: A View From the Bench
Synopsis: The foregoing speakers discussed the below topics:
●   Good advocacy and legal research; and
●   Addressing the increase in self-represented litigants.

Comments and Observations of the Chair