Canada's federal government recently announced a proposed new law to change Canada’s federal family laws related to divorce, separation, and parenting, including the Divorce Act.

The Divorce Act applies to married couples who are divorcing. Nova Scotia's Parenting and Support Act applies to unmarried or common-law couples, and married couples who are separated but not divorcing. 

The proposed law focuses on changes dealing with the best interests of the child, family violence, child support enforcement, and improving various administrative processes.

Similar to recent changes made to Nova Scotia's family law , proposed changes to the Divorce Act would include a list of specific factors a judge would be required to look at in deciding a child's best interests and to determine a parenting arrangement when parents are not able to agree.  Changes would also:

  • update wording in the law dealing with parenting arrangements, replacing words like "custody" and "access" with terms like "parenting orders" and "parenting time"
  • set out specific rules about relocating with a child after a divorce (read here about relocation rules under Nova Scotia's Parenting and Support Act)
  • require judges to take family violence into account, including a list of specific factors, when determining parenting arrangements.

For more information see:

May 2018