Adoption and non-spousal relationships: Marta’s groundbreaking case

Blog Post
September 20, 2018
Read Time: 2 minutes

Earlier this week, a ground-breaking decision was released that involved our very own Marta Siemiarczuk. Marta assisted two women in a non-romantic relationship to apply to adopt a foster child in their care. She successfully argued that this law is discriminatory and infringed their rights guaranteed under section 15 of the Charter.

Polyamorous relationships and the best interests of the child

Blog Post
August 23, 2018
Read Time: 3 minutes

The law is getting better at acknowledging and protecting family configurations that range beyond the nuclear, such as single parents and same-sex parents. However, there are some family units that the law has been slow to recognise. A case before the Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court looked at three adults in a polyamorous relationship.

Canadian Infertility Awareness Week

Blog Post
April 26, 2018
Read Time: 1 minute

This week is Canadian Infertility Awareness Week. Did you know that Nelligan O’Brien Payne has a strong and talented group of lawyers practising in fertility law matters? Below are links to some of our recent blog posts.

Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Vriend v Alberta

Blog Post
March 29, 2018
Read Time: 2 minutes

April 2, 2018 marks the 20th anniversary of Vriend v Alberta, the landmark equality rights case that is among the most important civil rights moments in Canadian history. Delwin Vriend fought an uphill battle on his journey to the Supreme Court of Canada to challenge discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Defining (and Redefining) the Meaning of “Spouse”

Blog Post
February 1, 2018
Read Time: 2 minutes

The definition of “spouse” is constantly being honed and refined. Over the last twelve months, the Ontario legislature has been attempting to update the definition of “spouse”, in order to make it as inclusive as possible.

When having a baby is a team effort

Blog Post
September 28, 2017
Read Time: 4 minutes

A surrogacy arrangement typically involves a few extra players who wouldn’t be present in a traditional pregnancy. Fertility specialists, lab technicians, sperm or egg donors and a surrogate and her loved ones come on board to assist a family in creating a new life. While it’s amazing to see how having a baby becomes a team effort, each new person who enters the equation increases the odds of a misunderstanding or miscommunication escalating into a dispute.

Aboriginal Heritage and Cultural Identity: Should These be “Super-Weighted”?

Blog Post
September 7, 2017
Read Time: 2 minutes

Only months after Ontario voted to adopt sweeping changes to the child protection and public adoption regime to take into account unique Indigenous relationships, a decision by the British Columbia Court of Appeal makes one wonder just how meaningful this reform will be in Ontario.

Co-Mommas: A Historic Declaration of Parentage

Blog Post
February 23, 2017
Read Time: 2 minutes

What happens when two people who are not in a romantic relationship want to raise a child together? Does the law recognize these kinds of parents? In a Canadian first, our very own Marta Siemiarczuk assisted Natasha Bakht and Lynda Collins in asking the court to declare them as co-mothers of Natasha’s son, Elaan.