Is My Professional Degree a Marital Asset?

During separation negotiations, the value of your advanced or professional degree may come into question. If you attained the degree during the marriage, your spouse may argue that it is considered property, and therefore subject to an equal division of its value. It is important that you understand the worth of the degree and its

5 Basic Legal Rights When Given a Family Law Contract to Sign

Independent Legal Advice: You have an inalienable legal right to seek to independent legal advice from a lawyer of your choice before you sign a prenup, marriage contract or separation agreement. If the person telling you that you don’t need a lawyer, don’t sign the document. Free will and the ability to understand the proceeding:

How Do I Figure Out a Checklist of What Matters to Me?

The first questions should focus on how you want to proceed. Here’s an example: Do you want to be heard about what matters to you? If this is an important issue for you, then consider staying away from choosing an approach like court where your ‘hired gun’ does all the talking. What does being heard

More Tips for Business Owners Contracting Into, During and Out of a Relationship

When entrepreneurs and small business owners are transitioning their personal relationships such as cohabiting or separating is to learn about their right to secure their wealth and prepare for an orderly distribution if that relationship doesn’t succeed. Another time of transition requiring a good look at securing wealth is upon the transfer of an inheritance.

Equalization of Property: What’s in and What’s out?

In Ontario if there is no domestic contract executed prior to or during the marriage, married spouses who face a breakdown in their relationship will divide the value of their respective family property according to the statutory scheme. An accounting by ownership and value of the property held by each spouse as at the date

Property Division and Fully Disclosure in Family Law Settlements

In the family law field, clients are asked and expected to produce documents demonstrating their income from all sources, property of all sorts and debts and liabilities. The probable value and currency, accuracy and completeness of the disclosure is paramount. Why? For a family law lawyer to be able to provide comprehensive legal advice to

Crisis during Negotiation of an Agreement

Whether clients are married or cohabiting, separation is an emotional and often stressful time. Once the terms of an agreement have been reached on how the negotiations will proceed -collaborative approach, mediation, or traditional negotiations – from there it’s a matter of gathering all the relevant documentation to prove ownership and value. What happens when


When a new client arrived for our initial consultation he seemed sullen and distracted. I asked what he was thinking about. He sighed and explained how he always believed that what was held by his company belonged to the company and what were used by the family were family assets. He had a group of

Family Business Valuations and Marriage Contracts

A business owner was discussing seeking legal advice with Sandra, his high school sweetheart, about the impact his flourishing import/export corporation may face once they married. Jacques and his business partner, Sam, started seven years ago what is today a successful international company. There are four divisions employing 38 people; each with a family of

Betrayal or Good Economic Sense?

For senior adults stepping into their second marriages, the tough conversation is often about the marriage contract. Not so long ago, this discussion would have been a nonstarter and certainly a deal breaker. Feeling personal betrayal during this honeymoon phase, a tough discussion about money seems to come from nowhere.  The spouse being asked to