From my colleagues in Canada, from the Ottawa Citizen:
The old terminology of custody and access is being jettisoned, in favor of “parenting time” and “decision-making responsibility.”
There is a consensus amongst family law lawyers that the old custody/access terminology aggravates disputes, making litigation more protracted and painful than necessary. Parents who are losing “custody” feel like they are losing their children. Having “access” feels to parents like they are spending time with children who do not really belong to them. New changes also target mobility. There are now mandatory notice provisions for parents who wish to move residences in a way that would have a significant impact on their children.
In light of changes in family law court system, individuals who go through the process of resolving family issues in the legal field often face frustration and anxiety.
If we want to see a real change in our family court system, we will need to see a strengthening of social supports in the realm of mental health.
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