Resources and Publications

Navigating the Family Court System in Ontario

These resources have been produced by CLEO (Community Legal Education Ontario /Éducation juridique communautaire Ontario) with funding from: Legal Aid Ontario and the Department of Justice Canada.

An Introduction to Family Law in Ontario

    An Introduction to Family Law in Ontario

    August 2021

    This resource identifies the main issues that must be dealt with when relationships end. It also explains how decisions can be made through an agreement, alternative dispute resolution process, or court.

    Child protection flowcharts

    February 2022

    These are a set of 3 flowcharts that explain the child protection process.

    Child Support

    November 2021

    This resource discusses who has a legal responsibility to pay child support, how it is calculated, and how it is enforced.

    Children’s aid: Information for parents

    April 2023

    This resource offers information to help parents who are dealing with child protection agencies. It outlines when an agency might contact a family, how to respond if contacted, what the agency might do, what to do if the agency takes a child away, and where to get help in many languages.

    Family Court Illustrations

    These illustrations give people an idea about what a family courtroom looks like and who may be present at a hearing.

    Family law videos

    Watch our videos on family law issues.

    Family Law: Legal Help

    June 2022

    This resource discusses ways to get legal information and advice in family law. It also has details on where to find a lawyer, where to get help if you cannot afford a lawyer, and where to get help if you have experienced family violence.

    Making Decisions and Spending Time with Children

    August 2021

    This resource discusses decision-making responsibility and parenting time, which used to be called custody and access. It also explains what happens if parents cannot agree on a parenting plan.

    Separation and Divorce or Death of a Spouse: Property Division

    March 2021

    This resource explains the basic rules for property division between separating married spouses, their rights and obligations with respect to the matrimonial home, and what happens to property if one spouse dies. It also explains the different situation of common-law spouses. There are sections on responsibility for debts, division of CPP credits, and written agreements. The publication closes with detailed information on where to find legal assistance.

    The August 2018 version of this publication is being distributed with “Important updates in family law” (March 2021) insert.

    Spousal Support

    July 2022

    This resource discusses the factors that affect whether spousal support must be paid, in what amount, and for how long

    Steps in a Family Law Case

    November 2015

    Three interactive flowcharts to help people understand and work through the family law process:

    • Before you start, which takes people through the opening stages, including issues families need to think about and ways to resolve their issues
    • As an Applicant in a family court case
    • As a Respondent in a family court case