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Custody notes from Paul Millar - click here


Government of Alberta News Release - April 11, 2000

"The Family Law Statutes Amendment Act helps enforce child custody and access orders and protects the rights of non-custodial parents to spend time with their children."

- Dave Hancock, Minister of Justice and Attorney General

Family Law Statutes Amendment Act comes into effect April 14

Edmonton - The Family Law Statutes Amendment Act will come into force on April 14, 2000. The Act identifies the remedies and sanctions for breaking child access orders, and improves access to the judicial system for those seeking enforcement of child access orders.

This legislation protects the best interests of the children involved in child custody or access disputes," said Justice Minister Dave Hancock. "It also helps enforce child access orders that allow parents and other individuals to have continuing involvement in a child's life.

Under the Act, failure to comply with child access orders can result in:

Another period of access to replace the access that has been denied

Bonds to ensure access is provided

Fines of up to $5,000

Mandatory counselling, education and mediation

Imprisonment of up to 90 days

Police assistance in gaining access.

The legislation also gives enforcement jurisdiction to the Provincial Court, which will complement the existing jurisdiction of the Court of Queen's Bench. Approximately 38 of the 74 Provincial Court locations as well as the 13 Court of Queen's Bench locations will be available to hear these matters. This will provide greater court access to non-custodial parents or other family members who are seeking enforcement of child access orders.

The Act addresses recommendation 12 in the MLA Review of the Maintenance Enforcement Program and Child Access. Marlene Graham, Q.C., MLA Calgary-Lougheed led the review which addressed Albertans' concerns about current remedies for breaches of child access available to parents and other family members.

Justice Web Site: http://www.gov.ab.ca/just/

Contacts:

  • Honourable Dave Hancock - Minister of Justice and Attorney General - 427-2339
  • Marlene Graham - MLA, Calgary-Lougheed - 415-0991
  • Bob Scott - Director, Justice Communications - 427-8530