Alberta Pilot Project Seeks Solutions to Complicated Family Litigation
At Jones Divorce Law we recommend collaborative family law as a way to resolve conflict outside of court. In other blog posts, we have discussed the benefits of such processes (Arbitration, Mediation), and finding a good fit for a range of family cases. In Alberta, the demand in the court system for parenting matters has been high, and finding alternative resolutions that are integrated in the family law system has been essential. Luckily, these collaborative processes (sometimes called Alternative Dispute Resolutions) are also in the best interest of parents and those in the midst of a divorce. Day-to-day parenting decisions are often time sensitive, and waiting for a trial or to see a Justice or Judge may exacerbate these issues. It has been found that the keystone of effective dispute resolution is solution based problem-solving. This means, parents are more likely to stick to a solution if they came up with it themselves.
The Brief Conflict Intervention program is a pilot project in Alberta for out-of-court solutions in cases of high-conflict family litigation. This program is available for cases going through the Court of Queen’s Bench and is free of charge for the participants. Approved cases can receive up to ten hours of solution focused intervention from a specialized clinician. This BCI clinician is a neutral third party, who specializes in effective dispute resolution. What sets this practice apart from other collaborative or court ordered interventions is that the clinician can not make recommendations to the court. The clinician instead reports only resolved issues to a BCI Coordinator. This report will be available to the court.
Who is eligible for this program?
- parties whose primary dispute involves a parenting issue;
- one of the parties has a gross income of less than $40,000 per year;
- there is no current Child Intervention Services (Alberta Children and Youth Services) involvement;
- any criminal charges regarding assault have been dealt with by the courts;
- the parties have attempted mediation or agree to attempt mediation prior to the process (in some cases mediation may be waived by the BCI Coordinator);
- the parties are willing to participate in the Program.
This program seeks to find meaningful solutions that will assist in making parenting agreements less traumatic for both parents and children. Clients of the firm who are interested in this process can be referred by a lawyer. This process can also be court ordered, or requested by individuals. More information on the program can be found on the Alberta Service website.
Are you currently interested in parenting plans, or in a parenting dispute? One of the lawyers at Jones Divorce Law would be happy to discuss your issues. Contact us for a consultation today.