Mistakes in family law financial statements are common and costly. Here’s how to avoid them

Divorcing Well

Leanne Townsend is the founding partner of Townsend Family Law. Each month, our team sends a newsletter full of helpful tips, advice and insights to help you navigate family law challenges.

One of the most common mistakes people make when filling out their financial statements is forgetting to include disposition costs — the fees associated with cashing in an asset.

For example, a home will have disposition costs in the form of real estate commission fees and legal fees. Similarly, RRSPs and pensions have tax consequences for withdrawing the funds.

In her new blog, Townsend Family Law Senior Law Clerk Irina Kochkina highlights the most common errors people make with their family law financial statements.

A big issue that comes up for many couples is when one or both parties haven’t filed income tax returns for several years, she says.

“In almost all cases, you will have to disclose your income and provide backup documentation for the past three years,” she explains.

For more tips to make your life easier and avoid costly consequences as you navigate through the family law system, check out Irina’s blog.

Domestic violence pilot program pairs police officers with social workers for non-violent 911 calls

Ontario’s Peel Region tragically saw a rise in domestic violence rates from 2016 to 2021 – a 3.5 per cent increase – which is why the region is launching a pilot project aiming to reduce this rate.

Safe Centre Response Teams will pair police constables with social workers for 12-hour shifts to respond to 911 calls for non-violent, non-criminal intimate partner violence, such as verbal abuse.

Peel Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah tells CBC News that thinking “outside the box” was key to finding a solution, adding that assisting families at the earlier end of the domestic violence spectrum could prevent circumstances from increasing in severity and avoid repeated calls that escalate violence.

Plus, social workers will help families in distress by going with police on calls where needed, meeting with families to best address root causes of conflict — something police officers aren’t trained to do.

Progress for the project will be measured with monthly assessments and a full review is expected by its six-month mark.

“The earlier we can intervene and prevent physical violence, the stronger our communities and families will be,” Brampton Centre MPP Charmaine Williams says.

Divorcing with teens: Psychologist encourages parents to commit to a ‘goodwill relationship’

 

During a divorce with children involved, your partner will become your ex, but they’ll remain a parent to your children. That’s why committing to a good co-parenting relationship is crucial, especially when your kids are teens.

Co-parenting teenagers isn’t easy for parents or children. Experts say that teens witnessing their parents’ divorce could cause them to grow up faster and become more independent, which could manifest in them acting more assertive.

In a recent Psychology Today column, psychologist Carl Pickhardt says it’s important that both parents remain reliable, involved, supportive, reasonable, and tolerant of your teen and ex-spouse. By giving mutual support, co-parenting can be made a lot smoother.

“When counselling with divorcing partners, I tried to help them commit to a goodwill relationship in their parenting, working together for the sake of their kids,” he writes.

 

Highlights from Divorce Explained

Every week, Leanne Townsend co-hosts an Instagram Live show with family lawyer Steve Benmor, where they discuss issues on the minds of those who are divorced or divorcing. Here are the topics from a couple of recent shows. Click on the photo to check out the full episode.

Pioneer reveals the key to a satisfying mediation outcome

According to mediation pioneer Chip Rose, the key to achieving a satisfying outcome in divorce mediation lies in the hands of the spouses themselves. In this episode, he shares tips on how to approach divorce mediation strategically.

When Children’s Aid is involved in your family law matter

When divorce cases involve allegations of abuse or parental alienation, the Children’s Aid Society often plays a role in safeguarding the child’s welfare. In this episode, we unpack everything you need to know.

Looking for more information?

Looking for more information on what to expect during a divorce, abusive relationships, love and money, life after divorce or other family law topics?

Check out the In the News and Blog sections of my website where there’s a wealth of great content to get you up to speed on everything you need to know.

Leanne Townsend, Family Lawyer

Partner, Brauti Thorning LLP
Brookfield Place161 Bay Street,
Suite 2900,
Toronto, ON M5J 2S1

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Leanne Townsend is a multifaceted entrepreneur and attorney experienced in the areas of family law and domestic violence. She provides a full range of family law legal services in addition to running workshops and other programs to support people as they go through divorce.

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