abuseany act or neglect to act which threatens the health, security, or well-being of a person
accessa privilege which recognizes the right of and benefit to a child to spend time with an individual such as a parent who is not living with the child
access ordera court order that provides for contact between a dependent and the person applying for contact, such as visits, phone calls, emails, mail
accountthe act of proving what one has done to meet one’s responsibilities administrator: the person appointed by the court to fill a role, e.g. the role of executor if none was named in the will of a deceased person
adultin Nova Scotia, the age of adulthood is 19. It is also called the age of majority.
Adult Capacity and Decision-making Actthe Nova Scotia law that allows a judge to appoint a representative for an adult who cannot make some or all of their own decisions.
affidavita legal statement that is sworn or affirmed before a Commissioner of Oaths or a notary public affidavit of execution: a statement sworn by a witness about the signing of a document
assessora doctor or psychologist has the power to assess an adult’s capacity under the Adult Capacity and Decision-making Act. With training, an occupational therapist,
nurse, social worker, or other qualified health care professional can assess capacity.
assetA legal term for property. This can mean anything of value, such as a house, vehicle, or bank account.
assisted suicidethe act of intentionally killing oneself with the help of another person
attorneythe person who receives the authority to act on another’s behalf. This person is not necessarily a lawyer.
beneficiarya person who receives property through a will as an inheritance. The plural is beneficiaries. Also called an heir.
bonda type of insurance policy
capacityto be competent to perform a specific task, such as agreeing to a medical procedure. Also see testamentary capacity.
capacity assessmenttesting by a health care professional (assessor) to find out if a person has the ability to make important decisions on their own.
capacity assessment reporta report by a health care professional (assessor) to explain whether an adult can make important decisions on their own. The report may also include information from other sources, like family and friends.
clauseone section of a legal document, for example, of a will
codicila legal document written to change part of an existing will
cohabitation agreementa written agreement between a couple who are living or plan to live together which sets out their rights and responsibilities to one another
Commissioner of Oathsan officer who has the authority to administer oaths on legal documents
common law partnera person in an unregistered live-in relationship with a partner of the same or opposite sex. See common law relationship.
common law relationshipan unregistered live-in relationship with a partner of the same or opposite sex
competenta legal term which means to be of sound mind and able to make reasonable decisions. Also see incompetent person.
conciliationa process in family court for negotiating a custody or access agreement between two parties with assistance from a conciliator talking to the parties separately
consentBefore engaging in sexual activity with someone, the law requires that you take reasonable steps to be sure the other person agrees freely and voluntarily.
consent orderthe name of the agreement reached between two parties when the issue is resolved using mediation or conciliation
consumer fraudthe intentional deception of a person who buys something
contact timethe time a child spends with someone other than their parent or guardian because of a court order or agreement. This can be a grandparent, or anyone else who is close to the child. It is a term used in Nova Scotia’s Parenting and Support Act. See access, parenting time.
custodiana person who has legal care and control of property that belongs to someone else
custodythe care and control of a child
cyberbullyingwhen someone uses electronic communication, like email, text messaging, or social media, to harm your health or well-being
delegatethe person legally authorized to make decisions for another person. Also informally called a proxy.
dependenta person whom another person is under a legal obligation to support, such as a spouse or a child under age 19
domestic partnershipsee registered domestic partnership
donorthe person giving someone else the authority to act on her or his behalf
elder abusesee senior abuse
enduring power of attorneya legal document which authorizes a person, called a delegate, or company to act on behalf of another person, even if the person becomes mentally incapacitated or incompetent. One type of power of attorney.
enforcement ordera particular kind of court order which gives the police the power to enforce a contact order
estateall of the property owned by a deceased person when they die
euthanasiaan act taken by one person to end the life of another to relieve that person’s suffering
executionthe formal signing of a legal document
executorthe person named in the will of a person who has died, responsible for seeing that everything is handled properly
fraudintentional deception. Also called a scam.
fraudstera person who commits a fraud
general power of attorneya power of attorney that gives your full authority to your attorney
guardiana person who had applied to the court for guardianship of an adult under the old Incompetent Persons Act. Now considered to be a representative under the Adult Capacity and Decision-making Act. A guardian made all decisions for an adult under their care; a representative makes only the decisions the adult cannot make.
holograph willa handwritten will signed and written by the testator but not witnessed
identity theftthe illegal act of using personal information, for example personal identification numbers or Social Insurance Numbers, to steal from a person
incompetent personanyone who is legally incapable of managing their own affairs because of mental infirmity. This may be as a result of an accident, disease, or psychiatric illness.
instruction directivea person’s expression of wishes for health care measures they want taken for them if they become unable to express their wishes themselves, as laid out in a personal directive
interactioncommunicating with a child outside of parenting time or contact time. Includes phone calls, emails, or letters, sending gifts or cards, attending the child’s school activities or other activities, receiving copies of report cards or school
photos, video chats