Mandatory Parenting Courses Prior to Appearing in Court – Could This Be Coming to Ontario Courts?
As of January 4, 2022, in British Columbia, parents and other family members going through separation and divorce are required to take free online parenting courses prior to appearing in court.
In an article by Canadian Lawyer, it states that the parenting courses will help parents make informed decisions about what is in the best interests of their children while going through the separation and divorce process.
Will Required Parenting Courses Become a Reality in Ontario Courts?
Currently, parenting courses are not a requirement in Ontario courts. In my experience, parents who require lawyers to help litigate their family matter are often caught up in a very emotional situation and can sometimes unintentionally forget what is in the best interests of their children. As such, the question will be whether these online parenting courses will work to help inform parents of how to manage the best interests of their children?
While the Parenting After Separation courses are designed to help parents to build strategies to deal with conflict so they can ensure they are making decisions with their children in mind, it will always require willing participants to accept and receive the information they are being given.
B.C is also working on a project to explore informal trials on family law matters that would allow judges to play a more facilitative role in family trials. SMP Law looks forward to seeing how these changes impact family law in B.C, and whether these programs will be introduced in Ontario.
Currently in Ontario it is not required to take parenting course, however, if you are interested in some parenting courses that assist during separation and divorce, here are a few resources:
1) The John Howard Society – Co-operative Parenting and Divorce/Separation
2) The Family Enhancement Centre – Co-parenting group
3) Peachey Counselling – Co-parenting workshops
Contact us anytime at SMP Law to help SiMPlify your legal matter at 905-565-9494 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or would like to book an appointment to meet and discuss your situation and how we can help.