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Family Law

Printable Summary

Family law issues are often complex, emotional and contentious, and may involve not just the interests of the parties, but of their children, extended family members, family businesses and financial assets.

When these issues arise, the Family Law Group at Torkin Manes LLP has the skills, experience and sensitivity to protect your interests, advocate your position and achieve a lasting resolution. 

The Family Law Group at Torkin Manes is one of the largest and most respected in Canada. We have handled some of the country’s most challenging family law cases and have set enduring family law precedents. With expertise in both preventative and reactive family law, our lawyers effectively negotiate cohabitation agreements, marriage contracts and separation agreements dealing with property, support, custody and access. In addition, our lawyers are both trained litigators and leaders in Alternative Dispute Resolution.

Three of our senior lawyers are certified as Specialists in Family Law by The Law Society of Upper Canada and as mediators and arbitrators by the ADR Institute of Ontario. They are recognized in Lexpert’s peer review as Consistently Recommended. Our lawyers have taught Family Law for the Bar Admission Courses, served as members of the Executive Committee for the Ontario and Canadian Bar Associations - Family Law Sections, and have written leading publications on a wide range of family law issues. We edit and publish Money and Family Law, a monthly report on the impact of family property law on business and personal financial planning. One of our lawyers is a contributing editor of Advising the Family-Owned Business, which includes chapters on family law matters.

As part of a full-service firm, we are uniquely poised  to coordinate our clients’ legal needs should they go beyond Family Law. With our Business Law, Tax, Real Estate and Wills,Trusts & Estates Groups, we are able to provide timely, seamless, and cost-effective service to families as they plan their futures. Our clients come from various cultural and economic backgrounds, and include Ontario residents, residents of other Canadian provinces, and international clients with interests in Ontario. We ensure that they fully understand the legal and strategic implications of their available options, so that they get the best possible resolution and maximum protection.

The Family Law Group at Torkin Manes provides advice and representation related to:

  • Domestic Contracts, including Cohabitation Agreements, Marriage Contracts and Separation Agreements
  • Litigation, including appeals
  • Mediation and arbitration
  • Same-Sex Issues
  • Spousal Support
  • Child support
  • Custody and access
  • Mobility rights
  • Grandparents’ access rights
  • Property division
  • Annulment
  • Child protection
  • Step-Parent Adoption

Publications & Presentations

Article

The irony of representing yourself in family law litigation: It can cost you more than hiring a lawyer

Special to the National Post A wife’s decision to represent herself caused the husband to incur huge legal fees over 17 years. She was ordered to pay him $150,000.
Jan 16, 2019
Article

What you need to know if you are considering getting a divorce in 2019

Special to the National Post Here are some words of advice for people looking to join the flood of calls to family lawyers early each January.
Jan 9, 2019
Article

She paid the insurance premiums for 13 years, but his new spouse got the payout — until the court intervened

Special to the National Post Full $250,000 paid to first wife in ruling guided by principle of unjust enrichment.
Dec 11, 2018
Article

Modern Families: Understanding Polyamorous Relationships and their Judicial Recognition

STEP Journal, November 2018, Volume 26, Issue 9 As the traditional family model becomes a thing of the past, courts will need to keep pace with change
Nov 30, 2018

News & Media

In the News

Young couples living together to save on housing costs need to sign this often overlooked pact — Laurie Pawlitz speaks to the Globe & Mail on the importance of cohabitation agreements

The Globe & Mail There are many common-law couples who haven’t signed anything – and who stand to lose a lot in the event of a separation.
Nov 15, 2018
Firm News

Daniel Melamed and Laurie Pawlitza invited to speak before the House of Commons' Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on Bill C-78

Daniel Melamed and Laurie Pawlitza, partners in our Family Law Group, have been chosen as two of the witnesses selected by the House of Commons' Stand...
Nov 14, 2018
Firm News

Lorne Wolfson to moderate panel at the Family Dispute Resolution of Ontario's 2018 Conference

Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario’s (FDRIO) Annual Conference Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario’s conference will be held on Monday, November 19, 2018 in Toronto.
Sep 7, 2018
Firm News

Torkin Manes Family Law Group secures top ranking in the 2019 edition of Chambers & Partners High Net Worth

Chambers & Partners High Net Worth Torkin Manes is pleased to be ranked Band 1 by Chambers High Net Worth 2018 in the area of Family/Matrimonial Law in Canada.
Aug 22, 2018

Events

3rd Annual FDRIO Conference

Lorne Wolfson will be speaking at the upcoming third annual FDRIO Conference. The conference is taking place on November 20th and 21st. The conf...
Nov 20, 2017 - Nov 21, 2017

Open Border - Hidden Risks

Canada and the United States share one of the most unobstructed borders in the world. Many companies and families are active on both sides of the 49th...
Nov 17, 2016: 09:00 - 11:00

10th Annual Family Law Summit

Daniel Melamed will be chairing the 10th Annual Family Law Summit presented by the Law Society in April 2016.
Apr 11, 2016: 09:00 - Apr 12, 2016: 16:00

Incentivizing Employees – Choosing the Right “Option”

Our speakers will discuss the various forms of deferred employee compensation, including stock options, phantom shares, share appreciation rights plan...
Nov 17, 2015