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Defamation

Defamation

Posted by on Mar 18, 2019 in blogs | 0 comments

During the course of business, often professional relationships break down and the parties move on to other ventures and more compatible business partners. However, there are also occasions in which individuals find their livelihood affected by untrue and disparaging comments of disgruntled past affiliates. If you find yourself in such a scenario, you may have a claim in defamation against that person. As found in Grant v. Torstar Corp., the Supreme Court of Canada established that for statements to be defamatory, a plaintiff must prove the following three things: that the words are defamatory in the sense that they lower the plaintiff’s reputation in the eyes of a reasonable person; that the defamatory words referred to the plaintiff; and the defamatory words were published – in that they were communicated to at least one other person than the plaintiff. However, please be aware that there are eight recognized defences in defamation actions and there are also situations in which a defamation case will not be allowed. Takahashi v. Woods & Lovell (CV-18-599415) Most recently, our office brought a Motion for Summary Judgment on a matter that dealt with our client’s alleged defamation of an individual. The central issue before the court was whether there was a genuine issue requiring trial with respect to the defamation claim. The problem with the plaintiff’s matter was that the alleged defamatory words were protected by privilege. That is, the words that allegedly defamed the plaintiff could not be used as a basis for any claim. As such, Mr. Nuri was able to obtain a dismissal of the case and costs in the amount of $13,603.73 against the plaintiff for wrongfully bringing the action against our client. In short, while you may believe that you have a straightforward claim against an individual for defaming you and/or your business, it is best to discuss the matter with a lawyer to ensure you have a valid claim that will not be thrown out by a judge. For more information, please contact David H. Nuri, Barrister & Solicitor at (416) 323-5092 and we’d be happy to speak with you more at a...

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Restraining Orders

Restraining Orders

Posted by on Mar 21, 2018 in blogs | 0 comments

A litigant at family court can apply for a restraining order against any person if they have reasonable grounds: to fear for their own safety; or for the safety of any child in their lawful custody. If you are looking to get a restraining order, here are some things you should consider: The subject of your restraining order can be different depending on the legislation under which you seek the remedy. Under section 35 of the Children’s Law Reform Act a restraining order can be sought against any person. However, under section 46 of the Family Law Act, a restraining order can only be sought against a restricted group of people: spouses, former spouses, or people that one cohabited with at some point. With a restraining order you can prevent someone from directly or indirectly contacting you and/or your children. You can also prevent a person from coming within a specified distance of one or more locations (your home, your workplace, the child’s school, the child’s day care etc.). A restraining order is a discretionary remedy. This means that the court may choose if and when to issue a restraining order. Courts have concluded that restraining orders are appropriate when another person molests, annoys, or harasses you and/or the children. The types of conduct that courts will restrain involves behaviour that a reasonable person would see as disturbing or as a substantial source of anxiety or irritation. It is behaviour that bothers and vexes you, and it can involve repeated acts that harm, injure, molest or make you angry. If you think someone’s conduct amounts to molesting, annoying, or harassing behaviour, there must be an objective factual basis for such a conclusion. Restraining orders are not remedies for bad manners, poor communication or suspicion. It is remedy to control another person when he or she is unable to restrain themselves and a court is required to tell them how to behave. Typically, if a court concludes that the family litigation cannot be conducted in a reasonable atmosphere, a restraining order may be necessary. It helps to know that restraining orders have been granted in cases where a spouse had...

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Updates to the Federal Child Support Guidelines

Updates to the Federal Child Support Guidelines

Posted by on Feb 5, 2018 in blogs | 1 comment

On November 22, 2017, updates to the Federal Child Support Guidelines (“Guidelines”) came into effect. These updates reflect recent amendments to the tax rules. Support payors should be aware that the recent updates increase obligations under the category of basic table amount of support. As of November 22, 2017, child support will be calculated according to the new table with its higher numbers for child support. However, if any arrears or retroactive support are owed for the period between December 31, 2011 and November 21, 2017, the 2011 Tables still apply. The Guidelines provide a simple way for parents and courts to quantify monthly child support obligations. They take the mystery out of the process of determining an appropriate amount of child support by instilling efficiency and consistency. Generally, the Guidelines do this by taking into account the number of children that require support, and the gross income of the payor parent. The table offered in the Guidelines determines support for payors that earn up to $150,000.00 – beyond which courts can either increase or decrease the support obligation if the table amount is inappropriate. This means that any increase in a support payor’s income should translate to an increase in the support payor’s total amount of support owed. It is important to note that according to the Guidelines, a payor’s income is determined by looking at his/her income tax returns and notices of assessments for the previous three years. Courts also take into account paystubs, bank statements, and confirmation of assets, debts and liabilities. Depending on the circumstances, many avenues are available to court to determine a payor’s income. Further, the recent updates do not affect special or extraordinary expenses under section 7 of the Guidelines. Special expenses are considered “add-ons” and are paid in addition to basic table amount of support. Those expenses are determined by sharing the expense between the parents in proportion to their incomes. If you have a conflict that involves child support, please contact David H. Nuri, Barrister & Solicitor for additional information. We can assist you in obtaining a child support award and in the appropriate circumstances, even help you reduce or...

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Cohabitation and Common Law Couples

Cohabitation and Common Law Couples

Posted by on Oct 27, 2016 in blogs | 0 comments

What does it mean to cohabit? To cohabit means “to live together in a conjugal relationship, whether it be within or outside of marriage.” In Ontario, this includes same sex couples. To be considered a common law spouse in this province, you must either live together for 3 years or be in a relationship of some permanence where the parties are natural or adoptive parents of a child. It is important to note that you do not necessarily need continuous daily cohabitation to be considered a common law spouse (Campbell v Szoke, 45 R.F.L. (5th) 261 (Ont. C.A.)). You can have separate residences and still be considered a common law spouse. Of the many differences between married couples and common law couples, the most pronounced is the statutory rights regarding property that are afforded to married couples but are withheld from common law spouses.  Ontario’s Family Law Act does not extend property rights to common law spouses. So then, what property rights do I have? Although property rights are not extended to common law couples under the Family Law Act, common law couples do have remedies under the law of resulting trusts and constructive trusts. For a member of a common law couple to make a claim relating to property based on the law of trusts, they must be able to show the following three things: that the Defendant has been enriched; that they have suffered a related deprivation; and that there is an absence of a juristic reason for this enrichment. So what does this mean? Lets take the example of Kelly and John. Lets assume that Kelly and John have lived together for 10 years. Kelly owns a home. Throughout their years together, John helps pay bills, takes out a loan and makes some of the mortgage payments, uses his own money to repair sections of the house, and contributes to the upkeep of the property.  After 10 years the parties separate. Upon doing so, John brings a claim in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice for a monetary award because: Kelly’s property increased in valued over the past 10 years; John contributed extensively to that increase...

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Entitlement to Spousal Support

Entitlement to Spousal Support

Posted by on Oct 19, 2016 in blogs | 0 comments

Am I entitled to Spousal Support? As a divorced or separated spouse in Ontario, you may be entitled to spousal support depending on your particular financial situation and the circumstances of your relationship. There are two pieces of legislation in Ontario that govern the concept of spousal support. The Divorce Act acts as the relevant legislation for spousal support pertaining to legally married couples about to obtain or who have already been granted a divorce. Alternatively, the Family Law Act applies to couples who have been legally married, but are opting for separation rather than divorce, and common law couples who have cohabited for three years and/or have children. However, irrespective of the applicable legislation in your case, it must be emphasized that entitlement to spousal support is not automatically assumed based solely on satisfying the definition of “spouse”. The present article will briefly outline the legal principles that underpin spousal support and its related issue of entitlement, with an examination of relevant case law. Guiding Principles for Entitlement Entitlement to support is an inquiry that is made prior to looking at quantum and duration (an area that is not the subject of this paper).  Quantum and duration of support is determined by the Spousal Support Advisor Guidelines and in day to day practice, is largely arrived at with the help of support calculating software. Generally, when looking at spousal support, courts are expected to consider the length of the relationship, the parties’ present financial situations, and the familial roles that were undertaken while together. The purpose of support is recognize economic advantages and disadvantages that flow from the marriage and its breakdown; to apportion between the spouses the financial consequences of caring for children; to relieve economic hardships from the breakdown of the marriage; and to promote the self-sufficiency of each spouse. In the case of Bracklow v. Bracklow, [1999] S.C.J. No. 14, the Supreme Court of Canada used these overarching principles to establish three basis for entitlement to support: contractual, compensatory, or non-compensatory. With a contractual basis for support, a court can determine entitlement if any agreements, whether implied or express, between the parties created or negated...

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