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Volume 63, No. 10
120/2020
The British Columbia Gazette, Part II
June 2, 2020

B.C. Reg. 120/2020, deposited June 1, 2020, under the COURT RULES ACT [section 1]. Order in Council 287/2020, approved and ordered June 1, 2020.

On the recommendation of the undersigned, made after consultation with the Chief Judge of the Provincial Court, the Lieutenant Governor, by and with the advice and consent of the Executive Council, orders that

(a) effective May 17, 2021, the Provincial Court (Family) Rules, B.C. Reg. 417/98, are repealed and the attached Provincial Court Family Rules, except for Division 5 of Part 9, are made, and

(b) effective May 16, 2022, Division 5 of Part 9 of the attached Provincial Court Family Rules is brought into force.

— D. EBY, Attorney General; S. FRASER, Presiding Member of the Executive Council.

PROVINCIAL COURT FAMILY RULES

Contents
Part 1 – Purpose and Interpretation
Division 1 – General Information for These Rules
1  Purpose
2  Definitions and interpretation
3  Financial statements
Division 2 – Understanding How to Use These Rules
4  What these rules apply to
5  What these rules do not apply to
6  Parts that apply in certain registries
7  Which registry to use
8  Agreement or resolution possible at any time
Part 2 – Early Resolution Registries
Division 1 – Early Resolution Registries
9  Early resolution registry
Division 2 – Early Resolution Requirements
10  Early resolution requirements must be met before application filed
11  Early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed
12  Exception to early resolution requirements
13  Certain parties exempt from requirements
14  Protection orders and orders about priority parenting matters take priority
Division 3 – Notice of Intention to Proceed
15  Intention to proceed in certain cases after one year
Division 4 – Needs Assessment
16  Participating in needs assessment
Division 5 – Parenting Education Program
17  Completing parenting education program
Division 6 – Consensual Dispute Resolution
18  Participating in consensual dispute resolution
19  Certain parties not required to comply with consensual dispute resolution
20  Financial information for consensual dispute resolution
Division 7 – Failure to Comply With Early Resolution Requirements
21  Application in early resolution registry may proceed once filed
22  Failure of party to comply with early resolution requirements
Part 3 – Applications About Family Law Matters
Division 1 – Applying for Family Law Matter Orders
23  Application of Part
24  Applying for orders about family law matters
25  Additional requirements when applying for certain orders
26  Additional documents required when applying for orders about guardianship
27  Serving application about family law matter
Division 2 – Family Law Matter Reply and Counter Application
28  Reply to application about family law matter
29  Content of reply
30  Counter applications
31  If no reply filed
32  Judge or family justice manager may direct matters if party does not file reply
33  Copy to filing party
34  Replying to counter application
Part 4 – Family Management Conferences
Division 1 – Application and Purpose
35  Application of Part
36  Purpose of family management conference
Division 2 – Scheduling Family Management Conference
37  Scheduling family management conference if reply filed
38  Scheduling family management conference if no reply filed
39  Requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in family justice registry
40  Requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in parenting education registry
41  Attendance for preparing for subsequent hearing
42  Intention to proceed – family management conferences
Division 3 – Attendance and Procedural Matters for Family Management Conference
43  Attendance at family management conference
44  Lawyer attendance at family management conference
45  Family management conference may proceed
46  Information presented in family management conferences
47  Judge or family justice manager
Division 4 – Family Management Conference Proceedings
48  Case management orders
49  Completion of requirements
50  Interim orders
51  Interim orders for guardianship
52  Consent orders
53  Conduct orders
54  Orders made in the absence of a party – judge
55  Orders made in the absence of a party – family justice manager
56  Directions or orders to attend
57  Family justice manager may not change orders made by judges
Division 5 – Review of Orders Made By Family Justice Managers
58  Review of orders or directions made by family justice manager
Part 5 – Applying for Other Orders
Division 1 – General
59  Application of Part
60  Orders to which this Part applies
Division 2 – Case Management Orders
61  Case management orders at any time
62  Case management orders – judge
63  Case management orders – family justice manager
64  Applying for case management orders
65  Case management orders – without notice or attendance
Division 3 – Protection Orders
66  Priority – protection orders
67  Applying for Family Law Act protection orders or to change or terminate protection orders – without notice
68  Applying for Family Law Act protection orders or to change or terminate protection orders – with notice
69  Evidence at protection order hearing
70  Form of orders
71  Judge to make new protection order
72  What happens if protection order is made or changed
73  What happens if protection order is terminated
74  No limitation on protection order applications
Division 4 – Orders About Priority Parenting Matters
75  Priority – priority parenting matters
76  Applying for orders about priority parenting matters
77  Priority parenting matters – notifying other party
78  Priority parenting matters – without notice
79  Presenting evidence – priority parenting matters
Division 5 – Orders About Relocation
80  Applying for orders about relocation
Division 6 – Consent Orders
81  Applying for consent orders about family law matters without hearing
82  Consideration of consent orders
83  Applying for consent orders about case management
84  General process for consent orders
85  Consent orders at any time
Division 7 – Replying to Applications for Other Orders
86  Replying to applications
Part 6 – Family Justice Registries
87  Application of Part
88  Definition
89  Requirements in family justice registries
90  Exceptions to family justice registry requirements
91  Certain parties exempt from requirements
92  First referral by clerk
93  Participating in needs assessment in family justice registries
94  Completing parenting education program in family justice registries
95  Referral to judge after demonstrating completion of or exemption from parenting education program
96  Scheduling family management conferences
Part 7 – Parenting Education Program Registries
97  Application of Part
98  Purpose
99  Definition
100  Requirements in parenting education program registries
101  Certain parties exempt from parenting education program registry requirements
102  Demonstrating exemption or completion
103  Requirements to be met before scheduling
Part 8 – Family Settlement Conferences
104  Application of Part
105  Judge to conduct family settlement conference
106  Different judge to conduct family settlement conference
107  Attendance at family settlement conference
108  What happens at family settlement conference
Part 9 – Trials
Division 1 – General
109  Application of Part
Division 2 – Trial Readiness Statement
110  Trial readiness statement
Division 3 – Trial Preparation Conferences
111  Who must attend trial preparation conference
112  What happens at trial preparation conference
113  Trial judge and trial preparation conference
Division 4 – Trial Processes
114  Adjourning trial date
115  Child’s evidence
116  Reports under section 211 of Family Law Act
117  Applications related to reports under section 211 of Family Law Act
118  Attendance of witnesses
119  If witness does not comply with subpoena
120  Requirements for expert’s report
121  Obtaining guardianship orders at trial – affidavit
122  Judge may refer calculation of child support
123  Judge who starts trial must continue
Division 5 – Informal Trial Pilot Project Rules
124  Purpose of informal trial
125  Availability of informal trials
126  Preliminary matters for informal trial
127  Informal trial process
128  Facilitated resolution
129  Continuation of hearing in informal trial
130  Court may direct trial
Part 10 – Enforcement
Division 1 – Applying for Orders
131  Application of Part
132  Filing agreements
133  Filing parenting coordinator’s determination
134  Filing orders
135  Applying for orders about enforcement
136  Applying to set aside interjurisdictional order
137  Replying to application for order under this Part
Division 2 – Enforcement of Support Orders Under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act
138  Definitions for this Division
139  Proceeding may be held separately
140  Enforcement of support orders or agreements under Family Maintenance Enforcement Act
141  Issuing and enforcing warrants for arrest for failure to attend enforcement proceeding
142  Applications for orders under Family Maintenance Enforcement Act
143  Trial preparation conference
144  Service of documents under this Division
145  General rules in respect of hearing of matters under this Division
Part 11 – Consequences
146  Application of Part
147  Non-compliance with rules
148  Failure of party to attend court appearance
149  Issuing and enforcing warrants for arrest for failure to attend court appearance
150  Hearings about extraordinary remedies under section 231 of Family Law Act
151  Warrants related to orders for imprisonment under section 231 (2) of Family Law Act
152  Suspension of extraordinary remedy
153  Release of person
Part 12 – General Rules
Division 1 – General Procedural Rules
154  Application of Part
155  Deficient forms
156  Requesting conference or hearing
157  Judge may waive or modify requirements in rules
158  Judge may give directions
159  Judge may change, suspend or cancel orders made in absence of party
160  Practice directions
161  Child’s views
162  Child’s lawyer
163  Party’s lawyer
164  Attendance by means of electronic communication
165  Copies permissible instead of originals
166  Confidentiality of information
Division 2 – General Procedure for Orders
167  Effective date of orders
168  Preparation of orders
169  Designate may sign
170  Correction of orders
Division 3 – Affidavits and General Rules for Filing
171  Form of affidavits
172  Filing unsworn documents
173  Requirement to file additional copies if not filing electronically
174  Who can search court files
Division 4 – Service
175  Address for service
176  Ordinary service
177  Personal service of certain documents
178  Summons
179  Service completed
180  Documents served on the Director of Maintenance Enforcement
181  Documents served on a person who is not a party
182  Alternative methods of service
183  Proving service
184  Oral proof of service
185  Admissibility of other evidence of service
186  Service outside British Columbia
187  Service effective if acknowledged
Division 5 – Changing a Filed Document
188  Changing filed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application
189  Service of changed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application
190  Reply to change
Division 6 – Discontinuing an Application, Reply or Reply to Counter Application
191  Discontinuing an application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application
Division 7 – Electronic Filing
192  Electronic filing
193  Electronic filing of affidavits or other signed documents
194  Fax filing
Part 13 – Transition
195  Definitions for Part 13
196  These rules apply to pre-existing proceedings
197  Judge may make case management orders to resolve difficulty or doubt
198  Registry may temporarily accept certain forms under former rules
Appendix

Part 1 – Purpose and Interpretation

Division 1 – General Information for These Rules

Purpose

1 The purpose of these rules is to encourage parties to resolve their cases by agreement or to help them obtain a just and timely decision in a way that

(a) takes into account the impact that the conduct of a case may have on a child and family,

(b) minimizes conflict,

(c) promotes cooperation between the parties, and

(d) provides processes for resolution that are efficient and consistent with the complexity of the cases to be resolved.

Definitions and interpretation

2 (1) In these rules:

"adult" means a person who is at least 19 years of age;

"case" means

(a) a proceeding started under these rules, or

(b) a pre-existing proceeding within the meaning of rule 195 [definitions for Part 13];

"certificate of service" means a certificate in Form 7 [Certificate of Service], prepared in accordance with rule 183 [proving service], that certifies service;

"clerk" means a person who provides administrative support to the court;

"consensual dispute resolution" means

(a) mediation with a family law mediator who is qualified as a family dispute resolution professional in accordance with section 4 [family law mediators] of the Family Law Act Regulation,

(b) a collaborative family law process conducted in accordance with a collaborative participation agreement, or

(c) facilitated negotiation of a child support or spousal support matter with a child support officer employed by the Family Justice Services Division of the Ministry of Attorney General;

"court" means the Provincial Court;

"early resolution registry" means a registry specified in rule 6 (a) to which Part 2 [Early Resolution Registries] applies;

"family justice counsellor" means a person appointed as a family justice counsellor under section 10 [family justice counsellors] of the Family Law Act;

"family justice manager" means a person

(a) in a class of decision makers prescribed under the Family Law Act, and

(b) appointed as a decision maker under the Provincial Court Act;

"family justice registry" means a registry specified in rule 6 (b) to which Part 6 [Family Justice Registries] applies;

"Family Law Act Regulation" means the Family Law Act Regulation, B.C. Reg. 347/2012;

"family law matter" means a case about one or more of the following:

(a) parenting arrangements, including parental responsibilities and parenting time;

(b) child support;

(c) contact with a child;

(d) guardianship of a child;

(e) spousal support;

"family member", with respect to a person, means

(a) the person's spouse or former spouse,

(b) a person with whom the person is living, or has lived, in a marriage-like relationship,

(c) a parent or guardian of the person's child,

(d) a person who lives with, and is related to,

(i) the person, or

(ii) a person referred to in any of paragraphs (a) to (c), or

(e) the person's child,

and includes a child who is living with, or whose parent or guardian is, a person referred to in any of paragraphs (a) to (e);

"family violence" includes

(a) physical abuse of a family member, including forced confinement or deprivation of the necessities of life, but not including the use of reasonable force to protect oneself or others from harm,

(b) sexual abuse of a family member,

(c) attempts to physically or sexually abuse a family member,

(d) psychological or emotional abuse of a family member, including

(i) intimidation, harassment, coercion or threats, including threats respecting other persons, pets or property,

(ii) unreasonable restrictions on, or prevention of, a family member's financial or personal autonomy,

(iii) stalking or following of the family member, and

(iv) intentional damage to property, and

(e) in the case of a child, direct or indirect exposure to family violence;

"file" means to file with the clerk in the registry;

"filed copy" means a copy of a document that is filed and date stamped with the registry stamp;

"needs assessor" means a family justice counsellor who conducts a needs assessment under rule 16 [participating in needs assessment] or 93 [participating in needs assessment in family justice registries];

"parenting education program" means an educational program that is designed to support informed and child-focused decisions and that is approved by the Family Justice Services Division of the Ministry of Attorney General;

"parenting education program registry" means a registry specified in rule 6 (c) to which Part 7 [Parenting Education Program Registries] applies;

"party" includes the following persons who may be named in a case:

(a) a person who files a notice to resolve a family law matter, or is named as the other party on a notice to resolve, under rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed];

(b) a person who files an application;

(c) a person who files a reply, or may file a reply, to an application;

(d) a person who is named as the other party in an application under these rules;

(e) a person who is added as a party under these rules;

(f) the Director of Maintenance Enforcement, if the application is made under Division 2 [Enforcement of Support Orders Under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act] of Part 10 [Enforcement];

"peace officer" means

(a) a sheriff, or

(b) a police officer, police constable or constable, including a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who is deemed to be a provincial constable under section 14 (2) [Royal Canadian Mounted Police as provincial police force] of the Police Act;

"priority parenting matter" means any of the following matters:

(a) giving, refusing or withdrawing consent, by a guardian, to medical, dental or other health-related treatments for a child, if delay will result in risk to the child's health;

(b) applying, by a guardian, for

(i) a passport, licence, permit, benefit, privilege or other thing for a child, if delay will result in risk of harm to the child's physical, psychological or emotional safety, security or well-being, or

(ii) travel with a child or participation by a child in an activity if consent to the travel or activity is required and is alleged to have been wrongfully denied;

(c) relating to change in location of a child's residence, or a guardian's plan to change the location of a child's residence, if

(i) no written agreement or order respecting parenting arrangements applies in respect of the child, and

(ii) the change of residence can reasonably be expected to have a significant impact on the child's relationship with another guardian;

(d) relating to the removal of a child under section 64 [orders to prevent removal of child] of the Family Law Act;

(e) determining matters relating to interjurisdictional issues under section 74 (2) (c) [determining whether to act under Part 4 – Care of and Time with Children] of the Family Law Act;

(f) relating to the alleged wrongful removal of a child under section 77 (2) [wrongful removal of child] of the Family Law Act;

(g) relating to the return of a child alleged to have been wrongfully removed or retained under the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction signed at the Hague on October 25, 1980;

"registry" means the Provincial Court registry that is responsible for

(a) providing services to people on behalf of the court in a particular region of the Province, and

(b) maintaining all documents and records that are filed for a case;

"support" includes maintenance.

(2) In these rules, unless a term is otherwise defined or a contrary intention appears, the definitions in the Family Law Act apply.

Financial statements

3 When financial statements are required or referred to in these rules, they must be filed, unless otherwise indicated,

(a) in Form 4 [Financial Statement], and

(b) with any attachments that are described in that form for the family law matter or other specific circumstances that apply.

Division 2 – Understanding How to Use These Rules

What these rules apply to

4 (1) These rules apply to cases in the Provincial Court about the following matters:

(a) matters under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act;

(b) matters under the Family Law Act, other than the following Parts of the Act:

(i) Part 3 [Parentage], except as is necessary to make an order under that Part to determine another family law matter over which the Provincial Court has jurisdiction;

(ii) Part 5 [Property Division];

(iii) Part 6 [Pension Division];

(iv) Part 8 [Children's Property].

(2) For certainty, the matters referred to in subrule (1) to which these rules apply include the following:

(a) family law matters;

(b) protection orders under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of the Family Law Act;

(c) priority parenting matters;

(d) relocation;

(e) enforcement, including enforcement of support orders under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act.

What these rules do not apply to

5 These rules do not apply to the following matters:

(a) divorce, which is addressed under

(i) the Divorce Act, and

(ii) the Supreme Court Family Rules;

(b) property division and pension division, which are addressed under

(i) the Family Law Act, and

(ii) the Supreme Court Family Rules;

(c) adoption, which is addressed under

(i) the Adoption Act, and

(ii) the Supreme Court Family Rules;

(d) child protection, which is addressed under

(i) the Child, Family and Community Service Act, and

(ii) the Provincial Court (Child, Family and Community Service Act) Rules;

(e) adult guardianship, which is addressed under

(i) the Adult Guardianship Act, and

(ii) the Provincial Court (Adult Guardianship) Rules;

(f) interjurisdictional support orders, which are addressed under the Interjurisdictional Support Orders Act, except as provided in rules 134 (a) [filing orders] and 136 [applying to set aside interjurisdictional order].

Parts that apply in certain registries

6 In these rules,

(a) the Victoria registry is an early resolution registry for the purposes of Part 2 [Early Resolution Registries],

(b) the Kelowna, Nanaimo, Surrey and Vancouver (Robson Square) registries are family justice registries for the purposes of Part 6 [Family Justice Registries], and

(c) the Abbotsford, Campbell River, Chilliwack, Courtenay, Kamloops, New Westminster, North Vancouver, Penticton, Port Coquitlam, Prince George, Richmond, and Vernon registries are parenting education program registries for the purposes of Part 7 [Parenting Education Program Registries].

Which registry to use

7 (1) The registry that must be used for filing a form or document under these rules is the following:

(a) if there is an existing case with the same parties, the registry where the existing case is located;

(b) if there is not an existing case with the same parties, the registry closest to the following:

(i) if the case involves a child-related issue, the residence where the child lives most of the time;

(ii) if the case does not involve a child-related issue, the residence of the person who first files a document under these rules.

(2) If there is an existing case,

(a) the existing court file must be used if the parties are the same, or

(b) a new court file in the same registry must be used if paragraph (a) does not apply.

(3) A party seeking an order about a protection order or a priority parenting matter may do so in any registry, with permission of the court.

Agreement or resolution possible at any time

8 Parties may come to an agreement or otherwise reach resolution about family law issues at any time.

Part 2 – Early Resolution Registries

Division 1 – Early Resolution Registries

Early resolution registry

9 The rules set out in this Part apply in the Victoria registry.

Division 2 – Early Resolution Requirements

Early resolution requirements must be met before application filed

10 Before filing an application about a family law matter under Part 3 [Applications About Family Law Matters], a party seeking resolution of a family law matter in an early resolution registry must, unless otherwise provided in these rules,

(a) file a notice to resolve in Form 1 [Notice to Resolve a Family Law Matter],

(b) provide a copy of the notice to resolve to each other party,

(c) participate in a needs assessment under rule 16 [participating in needs assessment],

(d) complete a parenting education program under rule 17 [completing parenting education program], and

(e) participate in at least one consensual dispute resolution session under rule 18 [participating in consensual dispute resolution].

Early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed

11 Before filing a reply under rule 28 [reply to application about family law matter] to an application about a family law matter in an early resolution registry, the party filing the reply must, unless otherwise provided in these rules,

(a) participate in a needs assessment under rule 16 [participating in needs assessment],

(b) complete a parenting education program under rule 17 [completing parenting education program], and

(c) participate in at least one consensual dispute resolution session under rule 18 [participating in consensual dispute resolution].

Exception to early resolution requirements

12 The early resolution requirements described in rules 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed] and 11 [early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed]

(a) do not apply if the application about the family law matter is only for child support and that party has assigned child support rights to the government under the Employment and Assistance Act or the Employment and Assistance for Persons with Disabilities Act,

(b) cease to apply if the court file for the case is transferred under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] or 63 [case management orders – family justice manager] to a registry that is not an early resolution registry, and

(c) are not required if a party is only applying for one or more of the following orders under Part 5 [Applying for Other Orders]:

(i) a case management order;

(ii) a protection order;

(iii) an order about a priority parenting matter;

(iv) an order about relocation;

(v) a consent order.

Certain parties exempt from requirements

13 A party who is the government, a minister or a public officer is not required to meet the requirements that apply to a party under this Part.

Protection orders and orders about priority parenting matters take priority

14 For certainty, if a party applies for an order about a family law matter and

(a) an order about a protection order under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of the Family Law Act, or

(b) a priority parenting matter,

the party may apply for the order about the protection order or the priority parenting matter before complying with rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed] or 11 [early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed].

Division 3 – Notice of Intention to Proceed

Intention to proceed in certain cases after one year

15 (1) The parties must meet the requirements in subrule (2) (a) and (b) if no application about a family law matter has been filed in a case and more than one year has passed since the latest date on which one of the parties took any of the following steps in the case:

(a) filed a notice to resolve a family law matter in Form 1 [Notice to Resolve a Family Law Matter]:

(b) participated in a needs assessment:

(c) completed a parenting education program;

(d) participated in a consensual dispute resolution session.

(2) Before the parties described in subrule (1) may proceed,

(a) a party must file a notice of intention to proceed in Form 2 [Notice of Intention to Proceed] and provide a copy of the notice to each other party, and

(b) the parties must participate in a new needs assessment.

Division 4 – Needs Assessment

Participating in needs assessment

16 Unless otherwise provided in these rules, each party must participate individually in a needs assessment conducted by a needs assessor for the following:

(a) assistance with identifying legal and non-legal needs;

(b) information about resolving issues, including

(i) how to resolve family law matters and other issues out of court, and

(ii) how to apply for a court order;

(c) provision of

(i) a referral to an appropriate parenting education program under Division 5 [Parenting Education Program], or

(ii) an exemption from a parenting education program under that Division;

(d) referrals to other resources, including where and how

(i) to seek legal advice,

(ii) to access legal information,

(iii) to access resources for issues that are not legal in nature, and

(iv) to access resources for children dealing with family changes;

(e) assessment of whether consensual dispute resolution under Division 6 [Consensual Dispute Resolution] is not appropriate;

(f) assessment of any risk of family violence;

(g) referrals to other resources for individuals and families experiencing or concerned about family violence.

Division 5 – Parenting Education Program

Completing parenting education program

17 Each party must complete a parenting education program unless a needs assessor exempts that party because

(a) the party has already completed the parenting education program in the 2 years before the date of the needs assessment,

(b) the family law matter is related only to spousal support,

(c) every child involved in the family law matter has reached 19 years of age,

(d) the party cannot access an online version,

(e) the parenting education program is not offered in a language in which the party is fluent,

(f) the party cannot complete an online version due to literacy challenges, or

(g) the party cannot complete the parenting education program due to a serious medical condition.

Division 6 – Consensual Dispute Resolution

Participating in consensual dispute resolution

18 (1) The parties must attempt to resolve a family law matter by participating in at least one consensual dispute resolution session unless

(a) a needs assessor determines that the parties cannot access consensual dispute resolution services, or

(b) a needs assessor or a consensual dispute resolution professional determines that participation in a consensual dispute resolution session is not appropriate.

(2) To prepare for a consensual dispute resolution session, each party must participate in any preparatory meetings or other preparatory process as required by the consensual dispute resolution professional.

Certain parties not required to comply with consensual dispute resolution

19 The requirements described in rule 18 [participating in consensual dispute resolution] do not apply to any parties if one of the parties is

(a) the Director of Maintenance Enforcement, or

(b) a director under the Child, Family and Community Service Act.

Financial information for consensual dispute resolution

20 If financial information for consensual dispute resolution is required, it must be provided in the form required by the consensual dispute resolution professional.

Division 7 – Failure to Comply With Early Resolution Requirements

Application in early resolution registry may proceed once filed

21 If a party has met the early resolution registry requirements described in rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed], the party may proceed to make an application for an order about a family law matter in accordance with these rules even if the other party is unable or unwilling to comply with the early resolution requirements described in rule 11 [early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed].

Failure of party to comply with early resolution requirements

22 If a party who receives a notice to resolve does not comply with the early resolution requirements under rule 11 [early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed], the party may not participate in the case unless the court orders otherwise.

Part 3 – Application About Family Law Matters

Division 1 – Applying for Family Law Matter Orders

Application of Part

23 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Applying for orders about family law matters

24 (1) In this rule, "order about a family law matter" means an order about any of the following:

(a) a new order about a family law matter;

(b) an order to change or cancel all or part of an existing final order about a family law matter;

(c) an order to set aside or replace all or part of an agreement about a family law matter.

(2) To apply for an order about a family law matter in a registry other than an early resolution registry, a party must file and serve on each other party an application about a family law matter in Form 3 [Application About a Family Law Matter].

(3) To apply for an order about a family law matter in an early resolution registry, a party must

(a) meet the early resolution requirements described in rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed], and

(b) after having met the early resolution requirements, file and serve on each other party an application about a family law matter in Form 3 [Application About a Family Law Matter].

Additional requirements when applying for certain orders

25 (1) A party must file the following additional documents with an application about a family law matter:

(a) for an order about an existing order or written agreement, a copy of the existing order or written agreement;

(b) for an order about child support, a financial statement in Form 4 [Financial Statement] and any information or documents required by the child support guidelines;

(c) for an order about spousal support, a financial statement in Form 4.

(2) In addition to filing the additional documents under subrule (1), a party applying for an order about being appointed as a guardian must

(a) file the following additional documents with the party's application:

(i) a Consent for Child Protection Record Check in Form 5 under the Family Law Act Regulation;

(ii) a request, in the form provided by the registry, to search the protection order registry, and

(b) certify on the application that the party has initiated a criminal record check.

Additional documents required when applying for orders about guardianship

26 (1) A party making an application for an order about guardianship under section 51 [orders respecting guardianship] of the Family Law Act, including an application for a consent order for guardianship, must file an affidavit in Form 5 [Guardianship Affidavit] with the following exhibits attached:

(a) a record check from the Ministry of Children and Family Development;

(b) a protection order record check from the protection order registry;

(c) a criminal record check.

(2) The documents referred to in subrule (1) must be filed and served on each other party

(a) at least 7 days before the date set for the hearing of the application if no trial preparation conference is scheduled, or

(b) at least 7 days before the date of the trial preparation conference if a trial preparation conference is scheduled.

(3) The following periods apply in relation to the documents referred to in subrule (1):

(a) an affidavit referred to in subrule (1) (a) must be sworn no more than 7 days before the date the affidavit is filed;

(b) the record checks referred to in subrule (1) (b) and (c) must be dated within 60 days before the date that the record check is filed.

Serving application about family law matter

27 (1) If a party is applying for an order about a family law matter under rule 24 [applying for orders about family law matters], the party must ensure the personal service of the application about the family law matter by having an adult who is not a party leave a copy of the following documents with the party who is to be served:

(a) the application about the family law matter;

(b) instructions, in the form provided by the registry, about the following:

(i) how to file a reply;

(ii) how to obtain Form 6 [Reply to an Application About a Family Law Matter (with Counter Application)] for filing a reply;

(c) any applicable additional documents, as described in rules 25 [additional requirements when applying for certain orders] and 26 [additional documents required when applying for orders about guardianship].

(2) If a certificate of service is required under these rules, an adult who serves documents under subrule (1) must complete a certificate of service in Form 7 [Certificate of Service] and provide it to the party who filed the application about the family law matter.

(3) If a reply is not filed under Division 2 [Family Law Matter Reply and Counter Application] within 30 days of service of an application about a family law matter under subrule (1), the party applying for an order about a family law matter must file the certificate of service.

Division 2 – Family Law Matter Reply and Counter Application

Reply to application about family law matter

28 (1) A party who is served with an application about a family law matter may file a reply in accordance with this rule.

(2) To reply to an application about a family law matter that has been filed in a registry other than an early resolution registry, a party must

(a) file a reply in Form 6 [Reply to an Application About a Family Law Matter (with Counter Application)], and

(b) if the application about the family law matter is about child support or spousal support, file a financial statement in Form 4 [Financial Statement] with the party's reply.

(3) To reply to an application about a family law matter that has been filed in an early resolution registry, a party must

(a) meet the early resolution requirements described in rule 11 [Early resolution requirements must be met before reply filed], and

(b) after having met the early resolution requirements, file the materials referred to in subrule (2) (a) and (b), as applicable.

(4) A reply and, if applicable, a financial statement must be filed by a party within 30 days after the date that the party is served the application about the family law matter.

Content of reply

29 In a reply, a party may do any of the following:

(a) agree with one or more of the orders applied for in the application about the family law matter;

(b) disagree with one or more of the orders applied for in the application about the family law matter;

(c) include a counter application in accordance with rule 30.

Counter applications

30 (1) In a reply, a party may include a counter application to apply for an order about a different family law matter that was not included in the application about the family law matter.

(2) A party must file the applicable additional documents described in rule 25 [additional requirements when applying for certain orders] with the counter application if the counter application is about any of the following:

(a) an existing order or agreement;

(b) child support;

(c) appointment as a guardian;

(d) spousal support.

(3) If a counter application is for an order about guardianship under section 51 [orders respecting guardianship] of the Family Law Act, the party making the counter application must file the documents described in rule 26 (1) [additional documents required when applying for orders about guardianship].

(4) The time limit for filing described in rule 26 (2) [additional documents required when applying for orders about guardianship] and the periods set out in rule 26 (3) apply to the documents referred to in subrule (3) of this rule.

If no reply filed

31 If a party does not file a reply within 30 days in accordance with rule 28 [reply to application about a family law matter],

(a) the party is not entitled to receive notice of any part of the proceedings, including any court appearance, and

(b) a judge or family justice manager may make orders in the absence of the party.

Judge or family justice manager may direct matters if party does not file reply

32 Despite rule 31 [if no reply filed], a judge or family justice manager may

(a) direct that a party who does not file a reply under rule 28 [Reply to application about family law matter] receive notice of and attend a family management conference or another conference or hearing, and

(b) issue a summons in Form 31 [Summons – General].

Copy to filing party

33 The registry, within 21 days after a reply is filed under rule 28 [reply to application about family law matter], must provide a copy of the following to the party who filed the application about the family law matter, as applicable:

(a) the reply;

(b) the counter application included with the reply;

(c) all documents filed with the reply and counter application.

Replying to counter application

34 A party who is replying to a counter application must file and serve on each other party the following within 30 days after the date that the party receives the reply with counter application:

(a) a reply to the counter application in Form 8 [Reply to a Counter Application];

(b) if applicable, a financial statement in Form 4 [Financial Statement].

Part 4 – Family Management Conferences

Division 1 – Application and Purpose

Application of Part

35 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Purpose of family management conference

36 (1) The purpose of a family management conference is to provide an informal and time-limited process in which the judge or family justice manager

(a) assists the parties to identify the issues to be resolved,

(b) explores options to resolve the issues,

(c) is able to make orders and directions under Division 2 [Case Management Orders] of Part 5 [Applying for Other Orders] based on information provided by or on behalf of the parties to ensure that a file is ready to proceed to the next step in the process,

(d) is able to make interim orders under rule 50 [interim orders] to address needs until the parties resolve their family law matters, and

(e) is able to make orders under

(i) rule 31 [if no reply filed], if a party does not file a reply,

(ii) rule 52 [consent orders], by consent of the parties, and

(iii) rule 54 [orders made in the absence of a party – judge] or 55 [orders made in the absence of a party – family justice manager], in the absence of a party.

(2) A judge at a family management conference may make any other orders or directions as appropriate in addition to those referred to in subrule (1) (c).

Division 2 – Scheduling Family Management Conference

Scheduling family management conference if reply filed

37 Subject to rules 39 [requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in family justice registry] and 40 [requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in parenting education registry], if an application about a family law matter and a reply have been filed, the registry must provide the parties with information about the procedure for scheduling a family management conference.

Scheduling family management conference if no reply filed

38 Subject to rules 39 [requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in family justice registry] and 40 [requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in parenting education registry], if a party has filed an application about a family law matter and

(a) a reply has not been filed,

(b) based on the certificate of service, at least 21 days have passed since the application about the family law matter was served, and

(c) if applicable, the party has met the early resolution requirements under rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed],

the registry must provide that party with information about the procedure for scheduling a family management conference.

Requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in family justice registry

39 (1) If a case is in a family justice registry, the registry may not provide a party with information about the procedure for scheduling a family management conference unless a party has filed a referral request in Form 21 [Referral Request] following the completion of a needs assessment.

(2) The registry may not schedule a family management conference for a case in a family justice registry unless a party has filed

(a) a referral request in Form 21 [Referral Request] following the completion of a needs assessment, and

(b) one of the following:

(i) a certificate of completion of a parenting education program;

(ii) a notice of exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program].

Requirements to be met before scheduling family management conference in parenting education registry

40 The registry may not schedule a family management conference for a case in a parenting education registry unless at least one party has filed

(a) a certificate of completion of a parenting education program, or

(b) a notice of exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program].

Attendance for preparing for subsequent hearing

41 The parties may be required to attend a family management conference to prepare for a hearing, even if Part 3 [Applications About Family Law Matters] does not apply to the parties, if one of the parties has applied for one of the following orders:

(a) enforcing, changing or setting aside a filed determination of a parenting coordinator;

(b) prohibiting the relocation of a child under section 69 [orders respecting relocation] of the Family Law Act;

(c) setting reasonable and necessarily incurred expenses under any of the following sections of the Family Law Act:

(i) section 61 [denial of parenting time or contact];

(ii) section 62 [when denial is not wrongful];

(iii) section 212 [orders respecting disclosure];

(iv) section 213 [enforcing orders respecting disclosure];

(v) section 228 [enforcing orders respecting conduct];

(vi) section 230 [enforcing orders generally].

Intention to proceed – family management conferences

42 (1) A notice of intention to proceed with an application about a family law matter must be filed in accordance with subrule (2) if

(a) a party has filed an application about a family law matter,

(b) there is no final order in respect of the application, and

(c) more than one year has passed since the parties have taken any step under these rules.

(2) If subrule (1) applies, before a party may proceed,

(a) the party must file a notice of intention to proceed in Form 2 [Notice of Intention to Proceed], serve it on each other party and file a certificate of service, and

(b) the parties must participate in a family management conference.

Division 3 – Attendance and Procedural Matters for Family Management Conference

Attendance at family management conference

43 If a family management conference is scheduled, all parties to an application about a family law matter must attend the family management conference.

Lawyer attendance at family management conference

44 A lawyer for each party may attend a family management conference with the party.

Family management conference may proceed

45 A family management conference may proceed without a party who

(a) does not file a reply, or

(b) does not attend.

Information presented in family management conferences

46 For the purposes of a family management conference, the judge or family justice manager may require a party to provide the following for consideration:

(a) information provided in an application about a family law matter, reply and reply to counter application, if any;

(b) evidence provided in a financial statement;

(c) evidence given orally on oath or affirmation;

(d) affidavit evidence;

(e) submissions.

Judge or family justice manager

47 A family management conference may take place before a judge or a family justice manager, as applicable, in accordance with Division 4 [Family Management Conference Proceedings].

Division 4 – Family Management Conference Proceedings

Case management orders

48 (1) A judge at a family management conference may, based on information provided by or on behalf of the parties, make orders under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] to ensure that a file is ready to proceed to the next step in the process.

(2) A family justice manager at a family management conference may, based on information provided by or on behalf of the parties, make orders under rule 63 [case management orders – family justice manager] to ensure that a file is ready to proceed to the next step in the process.

Completion of requirements

49 A judge or a family justice manager at a family management conference may make an order that a party complete the following, as applicable:

(a) the early resolution requirements described in rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed];

(b) the family justice registry requirements described in rule 89 [requirements in family justice registries];

(c) the parenting education program registry requirements described in rule 100 [requirements in parenting education program registries].

Interim orders

50 A judge or a family justice manager at a family management conference may make interim orders, including interim orders about one or more of the following:

(a) parental responsibilities;

(b) parenting time;

(c) child support;

(d) contact with a child;

(e) guardianship of a child;

(f) spousal support.

Interim orders for guardianship

51 (1) A judge or a family justice manager at a family management conference may make an interim order for guardianship under section 51 [orders respecting guardianship] of the Family Law Act without an affidavit in Form 5 [Guardianship Affidavit] having been filed if the judge or family justice manager is satisfied that it is in the best interests of the child that an interim order for guardianship be made before that affidavit is filed.

(2) An interim order for guardianship under subrule (1), unless renewed by a judge or family justice manager,

(a) may not exceed a term of 90 days after the date the order is made, and

(b) if no term is specified, expires 90 days after the date the order is made.

Consent orders

52 (1) Subject to subrule (2), a judge or a family justice manager at a family management conference may make orders with the consent of the parties, including final orders about one or more of the following:

(a) parental responsibilities;

(b) parenting time;

(c) child support;

(d) contact with a child;

(e) guardianship of a child;

(f) spousal support.

(2) A family justice manager at a family management conference may not make a final order about guardianship of a child under subrule (1).

Conduct orders

53 (1) Subject to subrule (2), a judge or a family justice manager at a family management conference may make any conduct order that may be made under Division 5 [Orders Respecting Conduct] of Part 10 [Court Processes] of the Family Law Act, including the following:

(a) prohibiting a party from making an application respecting any matter over which a parenting coordinator has authority to act under an agreement or order, other than an application to change or set aside a parenting coordinator determination, without permission of the judge, under section 223 [orders respecting case management] of the Family Law Act;

(b) requiring the parties to participate in family dispute resolution, under section 224 (1) (a) [orders respecting dispute resolution, counselling and programs] of the Family Law Act;

(c) requiring one or more of the parties, or a child, to attend counselling, specified services or programs, under section 224 (1) (b) of the Family Law Act;

(d) allocating or requiring one party to pay the fees related to family dispute resolution, counselling, specified services or programs, if the party is ordered to attend, under section 224 (2) of the Family Law Act;

(e) setting restrictions or conditions respecting communications between parties, including respecting when or how communications may be made, under section 225 [orders restricting communications] of the Family Law Act, unless it would be more appropriate for a protection order to be made under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of that Act;

(f) reporting to the court or to a person named by the judge at the time and in the manner specified, under section 227 [other orders respecting conduct] of the Family Law Act.

(2) A family justice manager at a family management conference may not make the following conduct orders under Division 5 [Orders Respecting Conduct] of Part 10 [Court Processes] of the Family Law Act:

(a) an order under section 223 (1) (a) or (c) [orders respecting case management] of the Family Law Act;

(b) an order under section 227 (a) [other orders respecting conduct] of the Family Law Act, unless the order is made with the consent of the parties.

Orders made in the absence of a party – judge

54 (1) A judge at a family management conference may make an order, including a final order, in the absence of a party.

(2) To apply to change, suspend or cancel an order made under subrule (1), the absent party must file and serve on each other party the following at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance:

(a) an application for a case management order in Form 10 [Application for Case Management Order];

(b) any supporting evidence or documents.

(3) A judge may change, suspend or cancel an order made in the absence of a party if the judge determines that

(a) the absent party applied in accordance with subrule (2) within a reasonable time for the change, suspension or cancellation of the order, and

(b) either of the following apply:

(i) the absent party did not receive notice of the application or family management conference;

(ii) there is a good reason to change, suspend or cancel the order.

Orders made in the absence of a party – family justice manager

55 (1) A family justice manager at a family management conference may make an order, other than a final order, in the absence of a party.

(2) To apply to change, suspend or cancel an order made under subrule (1), the absent party must file and serve on each other party the following at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance:

(a) an application for a case management order in Form 10 [Application for Case Management Order];

(b) any supporting evidence or documents.

(3) A family justice manager may change, suspend or cancel an order made by a family justice manager in the absence of a party if the family justice manager determines that

(a) the absent party applied in accordance with subrule (2) within a reasonable time for the change, suspension or cancellation of the order, and

(b) either of the following apply:

(i) the absent party did not receive notice of the application or family management conference;

(ii) there is a good reason to change, suspend or cancel the order.

Directions or orders to attend

56 A judge or family justice manager at a family management conference may order or direct that a party

(a) participate in consensual dispute resolution,

(b) return for another family management conference,

(c) attend a family settlement conference,

(d) attend a trial preparation conference, or

(e) attend a hearing or trial.

Family justice manager may not change orders made by judges

57 A family justice manager at a family management conference may not change, suspend or cancel an order made by a judge.

Division 5 – Review of Orders Made By Family Justice Managers

Review of orders or directions made by family justice manager

58 (1) A party may, with permission of a judge, seek review of an order or direction made by a family justice manager under these rules by filing the following within 14 days after the date that the order or direction was made:

(a) an application for permission and review in Form 9 [Application for Permission and Review of Family Justice Manager Order or Direction];

(b) a copy of the order or direction to be reviewed;

(c) any supporting evidence or documents.

(2) The party seeking review of an order or direction must serve the documents filed under subrule (1) on each other party at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance.

(3) In granting permission for review of an order or direction, a judge may consider if

(a) the order or direction conflicts with any other order or direction in respect of the parties,

(b) the order or direction is correct, and

(c) the proposed review involves matters of sufficient importance.

(4) A judge who grants permission for review of an order or direction may do the following:

(a) impose any appropriate terms for the review;

(b) give directions about notice of the hearing of the review.

Part 5 – Applying for Other Orders

Division 1 – General

Application of Part

59 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Orders to which this Part applies

60 The rules in this Part apply to applications for the following:

(a) case management orders;

(b) protection orders under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of the Family Law Act;

(c) orders about priority parenting matters;

(d) orders about relocation;

(e) orders by consent, without a hearing.

Division 2 – Case Management Orders

Case management orders at any time

61 Case management orders under this Division may be made at any time.

Case management orders – judge

62 A judge may make orders to manage a case, including orders about the following:

(a) transferring a court file to another registry for all purposes or specific purposes;

(b) relating to the management of a court record, file or document, including access to a court file;

(c) correcting or amending a filed document, including the correction of a name or date of birth;

(d) setting a specified period for the filing and exchanging of information or evidence, including a financial statement in Form 4 [Financial Statement];

(e) specifying or requiring information that must be disclosed by a person who is not a party to a case;

(f) requiring that a parentage test be taken under section 33 [parentage tests] of the Family Law Act;

(g) requiring access to information in accordance with section 242 [orders respecting searchable information] of the Family Law Act;

(h) recognizing an extraprovincial order other than a support order;

(i) waiving or modifying any requirement related to service or giving notice to a person, including allowing an alternative method for the service of a document;

(j) waiving or modifying any other requirement under these rules, including a time limit set under these rules or a time limit set by an order or direction of a judge, even after the time limit has expired;

(k) allowing a person to attend a conference or hearing using electronic communication, including by telephone or video;

(l) adjourning a court appearance;

(m) respecting the conduct of a party or management of a case, including pre-trial and trial process and evidence disclosure, as set out in rule 112 (1) (i) [what happens at trial preparation conference] of these rules;

(n) relating to a report under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act, including requiring that a person who prepared the report attend a trial as a witness;

(o) adding or removing a party to a case, including leave to intervene under section 204 (2) [intervention by Attorney General or other person] of the Family Law Act;

(p) respecting the appointment of a lawyer to represent

(i) the interests of a child, or

(ii) a party;

(q) settling or correcting the terms of an order made under these rules;

(r) cancelling a subpoena.

Case management orders – family justice manager

63 (1) A family justice manager may make one or more case management orders that may be made by a judge under the following rules:

(a) rule 62 (a) to (i);

(b) rule 62 (o) or (p), provided that the order is made

(i) at least 60 days before the date set for the hearing or trial, if no trial preparation conference is scheduled, or

(ii) before the trial preparation conference, if a trial preparation conference is scheduled.

(2) A family justice manager may make one or more of the following case management orders:

(a) waiving or modifying any requirement under Parts 1 [Purpose and Interpretation] to 4 [Family Management Conferences] that is within the jurisdiction of a family justice manager, including any related time limit set by an order or direction of a family justice manager, even after the time limit has expired;

(b) allowing a person to attend a conference or hearing using electronic communication, including by telephone or video, if the conference or hearing is before a family justice manager;

(c) adjourning a court appearance, including adjourning a hearing or trial before the date set for the hearing or trial;

(d) respecting the conduct of a party or management of a case, other than orders relating to pre-trial and trial processes and evidence disclosure, as set out in rule 112 (1) (i) [what happens at trial preparation conference] of these rules;

(e) relating to a report under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act, other than requiring that a person who prepared the report attend a trial as a witness;

(f) settling or correcting the terms of an order made by a family justice manager under these rules.

Applying for case management orders

64 A party applying for a case management order under rule 62 or 63 must file and serve on each other party and every other person who may be directly affected by the case management order the following, at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance:

(a) an application for a case management order in Form 10 [Application for Case Management Order];

(b) any supporting evidence or documents.

Case management orders – without notice or attendance

65 (1) A party may apply for the case management orders described in rules 62 (g) to (j) [case management orders – judge] and 63 (2) (a) or (b) [case management orders – family justice manager] without notice to any other parties or without attending before the court by filing an application for case management order without notice or attendance in Form 11 [Application for Case Management Order Without Notice or Attendance].

(2) A judge or family justice manager considering an application under this rule for a case management order without notice or attendance may do any of the following:

(a) approve and sign the order without the attendance of the parties;

(b) give directions to obtain further information or evidence, including a direction requiring that the parties attend court;

(c) require that notice be given to any other parties;

(d) reject the application with reasons.

(3) If a case management order is made without notice under this rule, the party who applied for the order must serve on each other party the following:

(a) the case management order that is made;

(b) the application for the case management order without notice or attendance;

(c) any supporting evidence or documents.

Division 3 – Protection Orders

Priority – protection orders

66 If a party is applying for both an order about a protection order under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of the Family Law Act and an order about a family law matter, the application for the order about the protection order may be made before complying with the following, as applicable:

(a) the early resolution requirements under rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed] of these rules;

(b) the family justice registry requirements under rule 89 [requirements in family justice registries] of these rules;

(c) the parenting education program registry requirements under rule 100 [requirements in parenting education program registries] of these rules.

Applying for Family Law Act protection orders or to change or terminate protection orders – without notice

67 (1) A person who is applying for an order about the following, without notice, must file an application about a protection order in Form 12 [Application About a Protection Order] and any supporting evidence or documents:

(a) a protection order under section 183 [orders respecting protection] of the Family Law Act;

(b) to change a term or condition of, or to terminate, a protection order under section 187 [changing or terminating orders respecting protection] of the Family Law Act.

(2) A person who is applying for an order about a protection order under subrule (1) must include with the application a statement of the reasons why the application is being made without notice.

Applying for Family Law Act protection orders or to change or terminate protection orders – with notice

68 (1) A person who is applying for an order about the following must file an application about a protection order in Form 12 [Application About a Protection Order] and any supporting evidence or documents:

(a) a protection order under section 183 [orders respecting protection] of the Family Law Act;

(b) to change a term or condition of, or to terminate, a protection order under section 187 [changing or terminating orders respecting protection] of the Family Law Act.

(2) If a person is applying for an order about a protection order under subrule (1), the person must ensure the personal service of the application and supporting evidence or documents by having an adult who is not a party leave a copy of the application and supporting evidence or documents with the other party at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance.

(3) The adult who serves the application under subrule (2) must complete a certificate of service in Form 7 [Certificate of Service] and provide the certificate to the person applying for an order about a protection order.

Evidence at protection order hearing

69 Evidence at a hearing about a protection order under rule 67 [applying for Family Law Act protection orders or to change or terminate protection orders – without notice] or 68 [applying for Family Law Act protection orders or to change or terminate protection orders – with notice] may be provided

(a) orally on oath or affirmation, or

(b) by affidavit.

Form of orders

70 A protection order made under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of the Family Law Act must be in Form 13 [Protection Order] of these rules and does not need to be signed by the parties or their lawyers.

Judge to make new protection order

71 If a judge changes a term or condition of an existing protection order, including an extension of the protection order, the judge must terminate the existing protection order and make a new protection order.

What happens if protection order is made or changed

72 (1) If a judge makes or changes a protection order in accordance with this Division, a clerk must, as soon as possible,

(a) prepare the protection order, unless the judge directs otherwise,

(b) provide a copy of the protection order to the protection order registry,

(c) arrange service or provide a copy of the protection order on or to the party against whom the protection order was made or changed, as follows:

(i) if that party is present when the order is made or changed, provide the party with the protection order;

(ii) if that party is not present when the order is made or changed, arrange for the personal service of the protection order on that party within British Columbia;

(iii) if the registry is unable to arrange service under subparagraph (ii) or that party is evading service, notify the person who obtained the order and that person would subsequently be responsible for service, and

(d) provide a copy of the protection order to the person who applied for the order.

(2) If the party against whom a protection order is made or changed is not present when the order is made or changed, the party who obtained the order must provide the registry with information about the location of the party against whom the order is made or changed for the purposes of the registry arranging service under subrule (1) (c) (ii).

What happens if protection order is terminated

73 If a judge terminates a protection order, a clerk must, as soon as possible,

(a) prepare the order terminating a protection order in Form 14 [Order Terminating a Protection Order], unless the judge directs otherwise,

(b) provide a copy of the termination order to the protection order registry, and

(c) provide a copy of the termination order to the parties.

No limitation on protection order applications

74 A person may make subsequent applications about protection orders, including in the following circumstances:

(a) an earlier application for a protection order was denied or dismissed;

(b) the protection order has expired;

(c) the protection order has been changed or terminated.

Division 4 – Orders About Priority Parenting Matters

Priority – priority parenting matters

75 If a party is applying for both an order about a priority parenting matter and an order about a family law matter, the application for the order about the priority parenting matter may be made before complying with the following, as applicable:

(a) the early resolution requirements under rule 10 [early resolution requirements must be met before application filed];

(b) the family justice registry requirements under rule 89 [requirements in family justice registries];

(c) the parenting education program registry requirements under rule 100 [requirements in parenting education program registries].

Applying for orders about priority parenting matters

76 Subject to rule 78 [priority parenting matters – without notice], a party who is applying for, or applying to change a term or condition of or to cancel, an order about a priority parenting matter must file and serve on each other party

(a) the application for an order about a priority parenting matter in Form 15 [Application About Priority Parenting Matter], and

(b) any supporting evidence or documents.

Priority parenting matters – notifying other party

77 (1) Subject to rule 78 [priority parenting matters – without notice], if a party is applying for an order about a priority parenting matter, the party must ensure that the application and supporting evidence or documents are served as follows:

(a) if there is an address, an email address or a fax number provided for the address for service on the court file for the party to be served, there may be service

(i) by leaving the documents at the party's address for service,

(ii) by mailing the documents by ordinary mail to the party's address for service,

(iii) by emailing the documents to the party's email address, or

(iv) by faxing the documents to the party's fax number;

(b) if there is no address for service on the court file for the party to be served, there may be personal service

(i) by having an adult who is not a party leave the documents with the party to be served, or

(ii) as otherwise ordered for the service of the application and supporting evidence or documents.

(2) An application and supporting evidence or documents must be served

(a) at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance, or

(b) if a period shorter than 7 days is required, in accordance with an order from the court.

(3) An adult who serves documents under subrule (1) must complete a certificate of service in Form 7 [Certificate of Service] and provide it to the person applying for an order about a priority parenting matter.

Priority parenting matters – without notice

78 (1) A party may apply for an order to waive or modify the requirement under rule 77 [priority parenting matters – notifying other party] to serve another party by filing Form 11 [Application for Case Management Order Without Notice or Attendance].

(2) If a judge determines that notice of an application made under rule 76 [applying for orders about priority parenting matters] should be given to a party, the judge may make any directions the judge considers appropriate, including

(a) the date for the hearing,

(b) the amount of notice, and

(c) how notice must be given.

Presenting evidence – priority parenting matters

79 Evidence at a hearing about a priority parenting matter under rule 76 [applying for orders about priority parenting matters] may be provided

(a) orally on oath or affirmation, or

(b) by affidavit.

Division 5 – Orders About Relocation

Applying for orders about relocation

80 (1) This rule applies if

(a) a party is applying for an order under section 69 [orders respecting relocation] of the Family Law Act prohibiting the relocation of a child, and

(b) a written agreement or order referred to in section 65 [definition and application] of the Family Law Act respecting parenting arrangements or contact with the child applies to the child.

(2) A party who is applying for an order under section 69 [orders respecting relocation] of the Family Law Act prohibiting the relocation of a child must file and serve the following on each other party, at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance:

(a) an application for an order prohibiting the relocation of a child in Form 16 [Application for Order Prohibiting the Relocation of a Child];

(b) a copy of the applicable written agreement or order referred to in section 65 [definition and application] of the Family Law Act;

(c) a copy of, or the details about, the notice of relocation described in section 66 [notice of relocation] of the Family Law Act.

(3) For certainty, this rule does not apply if

(a) there is no written agreement or order respecting parenting arrangements that applies in respect of a child, and

(b) a party is seeking an order under section 46 [changes to child's residence if no agreement order] of the Family Law Act in respect of the child.

Division 6 – Consent Orders

Applying for consent orders about family law matters without hearing

81 The parties who are applying for an order about a family law matter by consent without attendance at court must file the following:

(a) an application for a consent order in Form 17 [Application for a Family Law Matter Consent Order];

(b) a draft consent order in Form 18 [Consent Order] signed by the parties or their lawyers;

(c) any applicable additional documents, as described in

(i) rule 25 [additional requirements when applying for certain orders], and

(ii) rule 26 [additional documents required in relation to orders about guardianship], in accordance with that rule.

Consideration of consent orders

82 A judge considering an application for a family law matter consent order may do the following:

(a) approve and sign the consent order without the parties' attendance at court;

(b) give directions to obtain further information or evidence, including to require that the parties attend court;

(c) make changes to the draft consent order and, if the parties consent to the changes, require that the parties attend the registry to review and sign the changes;

(d) reject the application with reasons.

Applying for consent orders about case management

83 (1) The parties applying for a consent order about a case management order must file an application for a case management order in Form 10 [Application for Case Management Order] and must specify in that form whether the parties are requesting a court appearance.

(2) If the parties specify in Form 10 that they are not requesting a court appearance, the parties must file a draft consent order in Form 18 [Consent Order] signed by the parties or their lawyers.

(3) A judge or family justice manager considering an application for a consent order about a case management order may do the following:

(a) approve and sign the consent order without the parties' attendance at court;

(b) give directions to obtain further information or evidence, including to require that the parties attend court;

(c) make changes to the draft consent order and, if the parties consent to the changes, require that the parties attend the registry to review and sign the changes;

(d) reject the application with reasons.

General process for consent orders

84 (1) If an application is made for a consent order without the attendance of the parties at court, a clerk must place the application, draft consent order and supporting documents before a judge, or a family justice manager if the consent order is within the jurisdiction of the family justice manager.

(2) If a direction is given under rule 82 (b) or (c) [consideration of consent orders] or 83 (3) (b) or (c) [applying for consent orders about case management], the parties and any other person specified by the judge or family justice manager must be notified by the clerk and the notification must include the date, time and place for the court appearance and any other information in the direction.

(3) If a consent order is made, a clerk must provide a filed copy of the consent order to the parties or their lawyers.

(4) Parties who have applied for a consent order and have had their application rejected must include a copy of the reasons for rejection with subsequent related applications for consent orders.

Consent orders at any time

85 The parties may consent to an order at any time during a court appearance, providing any evidence that the judge or family justice manager may require.

Division 7 – Replying to Applications for Other Orders

Replying to applications

86 (1) If a party is served with an application under this Part and chooses to reply, the party

(a) must attend court on the date and time referred to in the application for the court appearance, and

(b) may file a written response in reply to the application in Form 19 [Written Response to Application].

(2) If a party chooses to file a written response in reply under subrule (1) (b), the party must file and serve the written response on each other party before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance.

Part 6 – Family Justice Registries

Application of Part

87 The rules set out in this Part apply in the following family justice registries, as set out in rule 6 (b) [parts that apply in certain registries]:

(a) Kelowna;

(b) Nanaimo;

(c) Surrey;

(d) Vancouver (Robson Square).

Definition

88 In this Part, "certificate of completion" means a certificate issued on behalf of the Ministry of Attorney General attesting that the person named has completed a parenting education program.

Requirements in family justice registries

89 (1) Before attending a family management conference under Part 4 [Family Management Conferences], parties seeking resolution of a family law matter in a family justice registry must meet the requirements described in subrule (2).

(2) Unless otherwise provided in these rules, each party must

(a) participate in a needs assessment under rule 93 [participating in needs assessment in family justice registries], and

(b) complete a parenting education program under rule 94 [completing parenting education program in family justice registries].

Exceptions to family justice registry requirements

90 (1) The family justice registry requirements described in rule 89 (2)

(a) do not apply if the application about a family law matter is only for support and that party has assigned support rights to the government under the Employment and Assistance Act or the Employment and Assistance for Persons with Disabilities Act,

(b) cease to apply if the court file for the case is transferred under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] or 63 [case management orders – family justice manager] to a registry that is not a family justice registry, and

(c) are not required if a party is only applying for one or more orders under Part 5 [Applying for Other Orders].

(2) For certainty, if a party applies for an order about a family law matter and

(a) an order about a protection order under Part 9 [Protection from Family Violence] of the Family Law Act, or

(b) a priority parenting matter,

the party may apply for the order about the protection order or the priority parenting matter before complying with the family justice requirements described in rule 89 (2).

Certain parties exempt from requirements

91 A party who is the government, a minister or a public officer is not required to meet the requirements that apply to a party under this Part.

First referral by clerk

92 After a party files an application about a family law matter or a reply to an application about a family law matter, a clerk must refer the parties to a needs assessor for a needs assessment under rule 93 [participating in needs assessment in family justice registries].

Participating in needs assessment in family justice registries

93 Unless otherwise provided in these rules, each party must participate individually in a needs assessment conducted by a needs assessor for the following:

(a) assistance with identifying legal and non-legal needs;

(b) information about resolving issues, including

(i) how to resolve family law matters and other issues out of court, and

(ii) next steps in the court process;

(c) provision of

(i) a referral to an appropriate parenting education program, or

(ii) an exemption from a parenting education program under Part 7 [Parenting Education Program Registries];

(d) referrals to other resources, including where and how

(i) to seek legal advice,

(ii) to access legal information,

(iii) to access resources for issues that are not legal in nature, and

(iv) to access resources for children dealing with family changes;

(e) referrals to consensual dispute resolution or to another family dispute resolution professional, if appropriate;

(f) assessment of any risk of family violence;

(g) referrals to other resources for individuals and families experiencing or concerned about family violence.

Completing parenting education program in family justice registries

94 (1) Each party must complete a parenting education program unless a local manager of the Family Justice Services Division of the Ministry of Attorney General, or a designate of the local manager, exempts that party because

(a) the family law matter is related only to spousal support,

(b) every child involved in the family law matter has reached 19 years of age,

(c) the party cannot access an online version,

(d) the parenting education program is not offered in a language in which the party is fluent,

(e) the party cannot complete an online version due to literacy challenges,

(f) the party cannot complete the parenting education program due to a serious medical condition, or

(g) a consent order is filed that resolves all issues involving children.

(2) To request an exemption from the requirement under subrule (1), a party must submit a request for exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program] to the Family Justice Services Division of the Ministry of Attorney General for approval.

(3) The requirement under subrule (1) to complete a parenting education program does not apply if the party has already completed the parenting education program in the 2 years before the date of the family management conference.

(4) A party may demonstrate completion of or exemption from the parenting education program by filing one of the following, as applicable:

(a) a certificate of completion;

(b) a notice of exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program].

Referral to judge after demonstrating completion of or exemption from parenting education program

95 At any time after having met the family justice registry requirements described in rule 89 (2) [requirements in family justice registries], a party may request to attend a family management conference on one or more issues in the case by filing a referral request in Form 21 [Referral Request].

Scheduling family management conferences

96 After the parties have filed a referral request in Form 21 [Referral Request] and a party has demonstrated completion or exemption of a parenting education program, the registry must provide the parties with information about the procedure for scheduling a family management conference under Part 4 [Family Management Conferences].

Part 7 – Parenting Education Program Registries

Application of Part

97 The rules set out in this Part apply in the following parenting education program registries, as set out in rule 6 (c):

(a) Abbotsford;

(b) Campbell River;

(c) Chilliwack;

(d) Courtenay;

(e) Kamloops;

(f) New Westminster;

(g) North Vancouver;

(h) Penticton;

(i) Port Coquitlam;

(j) Prince George;

(k) Richmond;

(l) Vernon.

Purpose

98 The purpose of this Part is to promote the best interests of children by providing a parenting education program to persons who are in a dispute over child-related issues.

Definition

99 In this Part, "certificate of completion" means a certificate issued on behalf of the Ministry of Attorney General attesting that the person named has completed a parenting education program.

Requirements in parenting education program registries

100 (1) Before attending a family management conference about an application about a family law matter, each party must complete a parenting education program unless a local manager of the Family Justice Services Division of the Ministry of Attorney General or a designate of the local manager exempts that party because

(a) the family law matter is related only to spousal support,

(b) every child involved in the family law matter has reached 19 years of age,

(c) the party cannot access an online version,

(d) the parenting education program is not offered in a language in which the party is fluent,

(e) the party cannot complete an online version due to literacy challenges,

(f) the party cannot complete the parenting education program due to a serious medical condition, or

(g) a consent order is filed that resolves all issues involving children.

(2) To request an exemption from the requirement under subrule (1), a party must submit a request for exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program] to the Family Justice Services Division of the Ministry of Attorney General for approval.

(3) The requirement under subrule (1) to complete a parenting education program does not apply if

(a) the party has already completed the parenting education program in the 2 years before the date of the family management conference, or

(b) the application about a family law matter is only for child support and that party has assigned child support rights to the government under the Employment and Assistance Act or the Employment and Assistance for Persons with Disabilities Act.

Certain parties exempt from parenting education program registry requirements

101 A party who is the government, a minister or a public officer is not required to meet the requirements that apply to a party under this Part.

Demonstrating exemption or completion

102 (1) A party who is exempted under rule 100 [requirements in parenting education program registries] must file a notice of exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program] before attending a family management conference.

(2) A party who completes a parenting education program must file a certificate of completion before attending a family management conference.

Requirements to be met before scheduling

103 The registry may schedule a family management conference only after at least one party has filed, as applicable,

(a) a certificate of completion, or

(b) a notice of exemption in Form 20 [Notice of Exemption from Parenting Education Program].

Part 8 – Family Settlement Conferences

Application of Part

104 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Judge to conduct family settlement conference

105 A family settlement conference must be conducted by a judge.

Different judge to conduct family settlement conference

106 A judge who conducts a family settlement conference may conduct a trial in respect of the same issues only if no other judge is reasonably available to conduct the trial.

Attendance at family settlement conference

107 (1) If directed or ordered to attend a family settlement conference, the parties must attend and may be accompanied by a lawyer.

(2) On request of a party, the judge conducting a family settlement conference may allow a person who is not a party to attend the family settlement conference.

What happens at family settlement conference

108 (1) The purpose of a family settlement conference is to provide a process in which a judge helps the parties try to resolve any issues in dispute by agreement.

(2) At a family settlement conference, the judge may do one or more of the following:

(a) mediate any issues in disputes;

(b) make any order with the consent of the parties;

(c) make a conduct order under Division 5 [Orders Respecting Conduct] of Part 10 [Court Processes] of the Family Law Act;

(d) adjourn the family settlement conference for a period or generally for any purpose, including to allow the parties to comply with an order made under paragraph (b);

(e) direct or order the parties

(i) to participate in consensual dispute resolution,

(ii) to attend a further family settlement conference,

(iii) to attend a trial preparation conference, or

(iv) to attend a court appearance;

(f) make an order for disclosure of information, including financial information, that may assist readiness for a hearing or trial;

(g) give a non-binding opinion on the probable outcome of a hearing or trial.

(3) At a family settlement conference, if evidence is not required, the judge may make any order that may be made at a family management conference

(a) that may assist the parties to resolve any issues in dispute by agreement, or

(b) that may assist in readiness for a hearing or trial.

(4) A judge at a family settlement conference may make an order under subrule (3) in the absence of a party.

Part 9 – Trials

Division 1 – General

Application of Part

109 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Division 2 – Trial Readiness Statement

Trial readiness statement

110 Each party must file and serve a trial readiness statement in Form 22 [Trial Readiness Statement]

(a) at least 7 days before the date of the trial preparation conference if a trial preparation conference is scheduled, or

(b) at least 30 days before the first date of trial if no trial preparation conference is scheduled.

Division 3 – Trial Preparation Conferences

Who must attend trial preparation conference

111 (1) When directed or ordered to attend a trial preparation conference, the parties or their lawyers, if any, must attend the trial preparation conference in accordance with this rule.

(2) If a party is not represented by a lawyer, the party must attend the trial preparation conference.

(3) If a party is represented by a lawyer, the party must

(a) attend the trial preparation conference with the lawyer, or

(b) be available for consultation, if the lawyer attends without the party.

(4) If a child will be represented by a lawyer at a trial, the lawyer must attend the trial preparation conference.

What happens at trial preparation conference

112 (1) A judge at a trial preparation conference may make any order or give any direction that the judge considers appropriate, including orders and direction about the following:

(a) the time required for the trial and the trial date;

(b) the evidence to be required at the trial;

(c) the procedure to be followed at the trial;

(d) how views of a child will be heard;

(e) expert witnesses, including persons who are appointed to make assessments under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act;

(f) the filing and exchange of lists of documents;

(g) if any applications relating to the case have not yet been heard, requiring that those applications be heard

(i) at the trial preparation conference, or

(ii) within a period, or by a date, specified by the judge;

(h) requiring that the parties file a statement of agreed facts within a period, or by a date, specified by the judge;

(i) requiring that a party

(i) disclose information, including financial information, that may assist in readiness for trial,

(ii) allow inspection or copying of, or bring to trial, specified records that are or have been in the party's possession, power or control,

(iii) submit evidence by affidavit at the trial in accordance with any specific directions given by the judge, or

(iv) serve on each other party a written summary of the proposed evidence of a witness within a period, or by a date, specified by the judge;

(j) any other directions the judge considers appropriate to expedite the trial.

(2) A judge may determine at a trial preparation conference whether the trial will include any of the following alternative trial processes:

(a) the setting of time for the trial or parts of the trial;

(b) the type of evidence to be introduced;

(c) the number of witnesses;

(d) if family violence is an issue, alternative ways to examine and cross-examine parties.

(3) The judge at a trial preparation conference may, if necessary, adjourn the trial.

Trial judge and trial preparation conference

113 (1) Subject to subrule (2), the judge who conducts the trial preparation conference is to conduct the trial, if possible.

(2) If the judge who conducts a trial preparation conference makes an order, direction or determination

(a) that a party submit evidence by affidavit under rule 112 (1) (i) (iii) [what happens at trial preparation conference], or

(b) about an alternative trial process under rule 112 (2),

the same judge must conduct the trial.

Division 4 – Trial Processes

Adjourning trial date

114 (1) A party may apply to adjourn a trial under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] as follows:

(a) if the application is not with the consent of the parties, more than 45 days before the scheduled trial date;

(b) if the application is with the consent of the parties, more than 7 days before the scheduled trial date;

(c) if special circumstances apply, as soon as is practicable before the scheduled trial date.

(2) Without an application by a party, the judge may adjourn a trial at any time.

Child's evidence

115 A trial judge may admit a child's evidence about a family law dispute, including hearsay evidence, in accordance with section 202 [court may decide how child's evidence is received] of the Family Law Act, in the manner that the trial judge considers appropriate.

Reports under section 211 of Family Law Act

116 If a report is prepared under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act, the report must

(a) include the name and address for service of the person who prepared the report,

(b) include the person's qualifications, employment and educational experience, and

(c) unless otherwise ordered, be filed and served on all the parties at least 30 days before the date set for the trial.

Applications related to reports under section 211 of Family Law Act

117 (1) If an application under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] is made for an order that a person who prepared a report under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act attend a trial, that person must be served with the application and supporting documents.

(2) A person who prepared a report under section 211 of the Family Law Act may

(a) attend a conference or hearing,

(b) file submissions on availability for a trial, or

(c) file any other information relevant to that person's attendance

to assist with the trial judge's consideration of the application described in subrule (1).

(3) If a person who prepared a report under section 211 of the Family Law Act was directed under an order to attend a trial and the trial judge determines that it was unnecessary to call that person as a witness, the trial judge may order the party who required that person to attend to pay to the other party the reasonable costs associated with that person's attendance.

Attendance of witnesses

118 (1) A party who requires that a witness attend a hearing or trial must

(a) complete a subpoena in Form 23 [Subpoena to Witness],

(b) serve the subpoena by personal service on the witness by having an adult leave the subpoena with the witness at least 7 days before the witness is required to attend the hearing or trial, and

(c) when the subpoena is served, provide reasonable estimated travelling expenses to the witness.

(2) A witness who is served with a subpoena must

(a) attend the hearing or trial on the date and at the time and place stated on the subpoena, and

(b) bring any records and other things required by the subpoena.

(3) A witness who is served with a subpoena may, with 2 days' notice to each party, apply under rule 64 [applying for case management orders] to a judge for a case management order cancelling the subpoena if the witness believes that

(a) attendance as a witness should not be required, or

(b) it would be a hardship to attend the hearing or trial as required by the subpoena.

(4) An application under subrule (3) must be considered by the trial judge, if possible.

(5) A judge who cancels a subpoena may make any order or give any directions that the judge considers necessary and advisable in the circumstances, including an order adjourning the hearing or trial.

If witness does not comply with subpoena

119 (1) A trial judge may issue a warrant in Form 24 [Warrant for Arrest after Subpoena] for the arrest of a witness who does not attend court as required by a subpoena if the trial judge is satisfied that

(a) the subpoena was served on the witness,

(b) reasonable travelling expenses were provided to the witness, and

(c) the witness can offer relevant evidence that should be considered in making a decision about one or more of the issues in dispute.

(2) A warrant issued under subrule (1) remains in force until

(a) the witness named in the warrant attends court, whether voluntarily or under the warrant, or

(b) the warrant is cancelled.

(3) A witness who is arrested under a warrant issued under subrule (1) must, as soon as possible, be brought before the trial judge who issued the warrant.

(4) If a trial judge determines that a witness's evidence is still required, the judge may

(a) release the witness on giving the witness a release in Form 25 [Release from Custody] requiring the witness to attend court on the date and at the time and place stated in the release, or

(b) order a peace officer to detain the witness in custody until the witness's presence is no longer required.

(5) If it is not possible for the witness referred to in subrule (3) to be brought before the trial judge who issued a warrant under subrule (1) in a timely manner, the witness must be brought before another judge and that judge may

(a) release the witness on giving the witness a release in Form 25 requiring the witness to attend court before the trial judge on the date and at the time and place stated in the release, or

(b) order a peace officer to detain the witness in custody until it is possible for the witness to attend court before the trial judge.

Requirements for expert's report

120 (1) An expert's report that is to be introduced as evidence at a trial must be signed by the expert and must include the following:

(a) the expert's name, address and area of expertise;

(b) the expert's qualifications, employment and educational experience in the expert's area of expertise;

(c) the instructions provided to the expert about the case;

(d) the nature of the opinion being sought and the issues in the case to which the opinion relates;

(e) the expert's opinion respecting those issues;

(f) the expert's reasons for the opinion, including

(i) a description of the factual assumptions on which the opinion is based,

(ii) a description of any research conducted by the expert that led to the formation of the opinion, and

(iii) a list of the documents, if any, relied on by the expert in forming the opinion.

(2) A party may call an expert to provide opinion evidence only if the party serves a written summary of the expert's evidence on each other party

(a) at least 60 days before the expert is to give evidence, or

(b) within a shorter period if a trial judge shortens the time requirement.

(3) A party may introduce a report stating the opinions of an expert only if the party serves a copy of the report on each other party

(a) at least 60 days before the report is introduced, or

(b) within a shorter period if a trial judge shortens the time requirement.

(4) An expert report may be introduced in court without proof of the expert's signature.

(5) If a party who receives another party's expert report intends to call the expert to attend the trial for cross-examination, the party must, at least 30 days before the trial date, serve on each other party a notice requiring the expert to attend the trial for cross-examination.

(6) If a trial judge determines that it was not necessary to require a party's expert to attend, the trial judge may order the party who required the expert to attend to pay to the other party the reasonable costs associated with that expert's attendance.

(7) When giving an opinion to the court under these rules, an expert has a duty to assist the court and is not to be an advocate for any party, whether the expert is appointed by the court or is retained by a party.

(8) This rule does not apply to a report under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act referred to in rule 116 [reports under section 211 of Family Law Act] of these rules.

Obtaining guardianship orders at trial – affidavit

121 (1) If there is a material change in any of the information contained in a party's affidavit relating to guardianship of a child under section 51 [orders respecting guardianship] of the Family Law Act between the date the affidavit was sworn and the date of the trial, the party must ensure that the affidavit is current as of the date of the trial.

(2) If a material change referred to in subrule (1) relates to information contained in any record check attached to an affidavit, the party must

(a) obtain a new record check,

(b) file a new affidavit, attaching the new record check, and

(c) serve a copy of the filed affidavit, with the new record check, on each of the parties and every other person who may be affected by the orders sought, as soon as is practicable before the scheduled trial date.

(3) If a material change referred to in subrule (1) relates to information that is not contained in a record check attached to an affidavit, the party must

(a) file a new affidavit, describing the material change, and

(b) serve a copy of the filed affidavit on each of the parties and every other person who may be affected by the orders sought, as soon as is practicable before the scheduled trial date.

Judge may refer calculation of child support

122 At any time during a trial, a judge may refer calculation of child support to a person designated by the Attorney General to provide such assistance and require that the calculation be referred back to the judge.

Judge who starts trial must continue

123 (1) A judge who has heard any evidence at a trial must finish the trial, unless the judge dies or is otherwise unable to act.

(2) If a judge who has begun to hear evidence at a trial dies or is otherwise unable to act,

(a) the trial must be heard by another judge, and

(b) the other judge may

(i) start the trial again and re-hear all the evidence, or

(ii) with the consent of the parties, continue the trial at the point at which the trial had stopped.

(3) A judge who continues a hearing under subrule (2) (b) (ii) may give directions for hearing evidence as the judge considers necessary.

Division 5 – Informal Trial Pilot Project Rules

Purpose of informal trial

124 The purpose of an informal trial is to provide a trial process in which the trial judge is able to take a facilitative role to direct, control and manage the conduct of the trial.

Availability of informal trial

125 The court may refer parties to an informal trial if

(a) the parties consent to the informal trial, and

(b) the judge conducting the trial agrees that the informal trial is appropriate.

Preliminary matters for informal trial

126 At least 7 days before the first day of an informal trial hearing, each party must file and exchange with each other party

(a) a written consent, and

(b) any information required by the court.

Informal trial process

127 (1) At an informal trial,

(a) the trial judge must

(i) explain the informal trial process to the parties and the lawyers for the parties, if any, and

(ii) confirm that the parties

(A) have elected an informal trial with knowledge and understanding of the process, and

(B) have not been threatened to agree to an informal trial or been promised anything in exchange for agreeing to an informal trial,

(b) the parties must swear or affirm that

(i) the information provided under rule 126 [preliminary matters for informal trial], and

(ii) any statements made during the informal trial

are true and may be subsequently used as evidence during the informal trial and trial,

(c) the trial judge may request that each party explain the issues in dispute and, during the explanation of each party, the trial judge may inquire about any relevant issue or matter, and

(d) at the request of a party or on the trial judge's own initiative, the trial judge may allow a witness other than a party to give evidence, including a report under section 211 [orders respecting reports] of the Family Law Act or expert evidence.

(2) A trial judge at an informal trial may

(a) identify the issues to be resolved,

(b) make directions or orders regarding the type and form of evidence to be provided and any witnesses needed at trial,

(c) make any orders that are required before trial, including

(i) a protection order,

(ii) any order that may be made at a family management conference, family settlement conference or trial preparation conference, and

(iii) a final order in respect of a facilitated resolution under rule 128 (2) [facilitated resolution], and

(d) make any other interim or final order.

(3) A trial judge at an informal trial

(a) may admit any evidence that is relevant, material and reliable, even if the evidence might be inadmissible under strict rules of evidence, and

(b) must determine the appropriate weight to be given to any particular evidence.

Facilitated resolution

128 (1) During the informal trial, the trial judge may attempt to facilitate a resolution of some or all of the issues.

(2) If the parties reach a facilitated agreement during the informal trial, the trial judge may make a final order on the terms agreed to by the parties.

Continuation of hearing in informal trial

129 The continuation of an informal trial must be conducted in accordance with any directions made by the trial judge.

Court may direct trial

130 (1) If a trial judge determines at any time before or during an informal trial that the informal trial is inappropriate, the trial judge may direct that a proceeding continue under Division 4 [Trial Processes].

(2) If a trial judge makes a direction under subrule (1),

(a) the trial judge must determine the use to be made of any evidence already entered at the informal trial, if any, and may provide further directions, and

(b) the trial judge is seized of the matter and must hear the continuation of the trial.

Part 10 – Enforcement

Division 1 – Applying for Orders

Application of Part

131 (1) The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

(2) For certainty, a family justice manager has no authority under this Part.

Filing agreements

132 A party may file, using Form 26 [Request to File an Agreement], a copy of a written agreement referred to in the following provisions of the Family Law Act:

(a) section 15 [when parenting coordinators may assist];

(b) section 44 (3) [agreements respecting parenting arrangements];

(c) section 58 (3) [agreements respecting contact];

(d) section 148 (2) [agreements respecting child support];

(e) section 163 (3) [agreements respecting spousal support].

Filing parenting coordinator's determination

133 A party may file, using Form 27 [Request to File Determination of Parenting Coordinator], a copy of a determination by a parenting coordinator referred to in section 18 [determinations by parenting coordinators] of the Family Law Act.

Filing orders

134 A party may file, using Form 28 [Request to File an Order], a copy of any of the orders described in the following provisions:

(a) section 18 [registration of extraprovincial or foreign order] of the Interjurisdictional Support Orders Act;

(b) section 195 [Provincial Court enforcement of Supreme Court orders] of the Family Law Act;

(c) Rule 15-3 (6) [enforcement in Provincial Court] of the Supreme Court Family Rules.

Applying for orders about enforcement

135 A party who is applying for an order about any of the following must file and serve on each other party, at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance, an application about enforcement in Form 29 [Application About Enforcement], including a copy of the agreement, determination or order to be enforced:

(a) enforcing a filed written agreement or order, including enforcing the written agreement or order through a court order under any of the following sections of the Family Law Act:

(i) section 61 [denial of parenting time or contact];

(ii) section 63 [failure to exercise parenting time or contact];

(iii) section 228 [enforcing orders respecting conduct];

(iv) section 230 [enforcing orders generally];

(v) section 231 [extraordinary remedies];

(b) enforcing, changing or setting aside a filed determination of a parenting coordinator;

(c) setting reasonable and necessarily incurred expenses under any of the following sections of the Family Law Act:

(i) section 61 [denial of parenting time or contact];

(ii) section 63 [failure to exercise parenting time or contact];

(iii) section 212 [orders respecting disclosure];

(iv) section 213 [enforcing orders respecting disclosure];

(v) section 228 [enforcing orders respecting conduct];

(iv) section 230 [enforcing orders generally];

(d) determining whether arrears are owing under a support order or agreement made under the Family Law Act and, if so, the amount of the arrears.

Applying to set aside interjurisdictional order

136 (1) In this rule, "designated authority" has the same meaning as in the Interjurisdictional Support Orders Act.

(2) A party who is applying for an order under section 19 (3) [foreign orders after registration] of the Interjurisdictional Support Orders Act to set aside the registration of a foreign order under that Act must file and serve on the designated authority, by registered mail at least 30 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance, an application about enforcement in Form 29 [Application About Enforcement], including a copy of the foreign order to be enforced.

(3) The adult who serves an application under subrule (2) must

(a) complete a certificate of service in Form 7 [Certificate of Service], and

(b) file the certificate at least 10 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance.

Replying to application for order under this Part

137 (1) If a party is served with an application under this Part and chooses to reply, the party

(a) must attend court on the date and time referred to in the application for the court appearance, and

(b) may file a written response in reply to the application in Form 19 [Written Response to Application].

(2) If a party chooses to file a written response in reply under subrule (1) (b), the party must file and serve the written response on each other party before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance.

Division 2 – Enforcement of Support Orders Under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act

Definitions for this Division

138 In this Division:

"Act" means the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act;

"debtor" means a person required under a maintenance order to pay maintenance under the Act;

"support order" has the same meaning as "maintenance order" in the Act, including an agreement deemed to be a maintenance order as referred to in that definition.

Proceeding may be held separately

139 (1) A proceeding under this Division may be held separately from any other proceedings under these rules.

(2) The filing party may choose one of the following registries for a hearing under this Division:

(a) the registry where the existing case is filed;

(b) the registry closest to the debtor's last known address.

Enforcement of support orders or agreements under Family Maintenance Enforcement Act

140 (1) A party who is applying for the following garnishing order, summons or warrant, as applicable, to enforce a support order under the Act must file an application for garnishment, summons or warrant in Form 30 [Application for Garnishment, Summons or Warrant] and supporting documents:

(a) a summons in Form 31 [Summons – General] requiring the debtor to attend court or a warrant for arrest in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest], authorizing the apprehension of the debtor to bring the debtor before the court, under section 14 (2) [failure to provide statement of finances] of the Act, if a debtor fails to comply with an order to file a statement of finances or prescribed document, or both, made under section 14 (1) (a) of the Act;

(b) a garnishing order under section 18 [garnishment] of the Act to seize and attach, without further application or order, any debts due and owing by the garnishee to the debtor;

(c) a summons to a default hearing in Form 33 [Summons to a Default Hearing] to require the attendance of the debtor at a default hearing under section 19 [summons for default hearing] of the Act if the debtor defaults on a payment required by a support order;

(d) a summons under section 22 (1) (a) [failure to report] of the Act in Form 31 [Summons – General] or warrant for arrest under section 22 (1) (b) of the Act in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] if the debtor fails to report by

(i) failing to complete a statement of income and expenses and report to the court, the director or a person designated by the court, in accordance with an order under section 21 (1) (a) [default hearing] of the Act, or

(ii) failing to provide particulars of each change of residential address, place of employment or business address to the court, the director or a person designated by the court, in accordance with an order under section 21 (1) (b) of the Act;

(e) a summons to a committal hearing in Form 34 [Summons to a Committal Hearing] requiring the attendance of the debtor to a committal hearing under section 23 [committal hearing] of the Act if the debtor fails to pay, by a date specified in an order under section 21 (1) (d) or (11) (a) of the Act, the full amount required by an order under section 21 (1) (e) of the Act;

(f) a warrant of execution under section 27 [warrant of execution] of the Act if the debtor defaults on a payment required by a support order;

(g) a warrant in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] for the arrest of the debtor under section 31 (a) [arrest of absconding debtor] of the Act if there are reasonable and probable grounds for believing that the debtor is about to leave British Columbia in order to evade or hinder the enforcement of a support order.

(2) Unless the documents are served in accordance with subrule (3) or (4), the party who applied for the summons under subrule (1) must arrange for the personal service of the summons by having an adult who is not a party leave a copy of the following documents with the debtor at least 7 days before the date for the court appearance referred to in the summons:

(a) the issued summons;

(b) the application;

(c) any supporting documents.

(3) A clerk may have the documents referred to in subrule (2) served personally by a peace officer.

(4) A judge may order another method of service for the documents referred to in subrule (2).

Issuing and enforcing warrants for arrest for failure to attend enforcement proceeding

141 (1) If a party who is served with a summons issued under rule 140 (1) [enforcement of support orders or agreements under Family Maintenance Enforcement Act] does not attend court as required by the summons, the judge may issue a warrant for arrest in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] for the arrest of the party.

(2) A warrant issued under subrule (1) or rule 140 (1) (a) or (g) remains in force until

(a) the party named in the warrant attends court regarding proceedings related to the enforcement of support, or

(b) the warrant is cancelled.

(3) If arrested, the party named in a warrant issued under subrule (1) or rule 140 (1) (a) or (g) must

(a) be brought before a justice as soon as possible, and

(b) be released when the party signs a release in Form 25 [Release from Custody] that requires the party's attendance in court.

(4) The registry must provide notice to the party who applied for the summons or the warrant issued under rule 140 (1) of the new hearing date set out in the release form referred to in subrule (3) (b).

(5) If the party named in a warrant does not attend court on a hearing date set out in a release form referred to in subrule (3) (b), the judge may issue a warrant for arrest in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] for the arrest of the party and order that the party be brought to a judge promptly on the arrest.

Applications for orders under Family Maintenance Enforcement Act

142 (1) A party who is applying for one of the following orders must file and serve on each other party and every other person who may be affected by the order, at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance, an application in Form 35 [Application for Order Under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act] and supporting documents:

(a) requiring a person to provide to the director correspondence and searchable information in the possession or control of that person under section 9 [orders respecting correspondence and searchable information] of the Act;

(b) extending the time for filing a statement of finances with the court under section 13 (4) [statement of finances required by court] of the Act;

(c) requiring the debtor to file a statement of finances or prescribed documents under section 14 (1) [failure to provide statement of finances] of the Act;

(d) requiring the debtor to pay an amount on failing to file a statement of finances or, if required by section 12 or 13 of the Act, prescribed documents under section 14 (1) (b) of the Act;

(e) providing that a corporation is jointly and separately liable with the debtor for payments required by the support order under section 14.2 (2) [a corporation controlled by the debtor or by the debtor and immediate family members] of the Act;

(f) requiring payment by an attachee who failed under section 16 (3) [withdrawal of notice of attachment] or 24 (6) [attachment orders] of the Act to pay in accordance with a notice of attachment or to respond in accordance with the regulations;

(g) providing that a notice of attachment has no effect because the attachee is no longer liable or that the notice of attachment contains or is based on a material error, under section 16 (5) of the Act;

(h) changing an order made at a default hearing under section 21 (1) or (2) [default hearing] of the Act;

(i) changing the amount exempt from attachment under an attachment order or notice of attachment;

(j) setting aside an attachment order made under section 24 of the Act;

(k) discharging or postponing the registration of a support order registered against land under section 26 (10) [registration in land title office] of the Act;

(l) requiring that the Director of Maintenance Enforcement direct the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia to disregard, under section 29.2 (2) [withdrawing the director's notice] of the Act, a notice stating that the debtor is in default and that an action under section 29.1 (1) of the Act is to be taken in relation to

(i) the debtor's driver's licence, or

(ii) a licence and corresponding number plates for any motor vehicle or trailer owned by the debtor;

(m) requiring security in any form from the debtor under section 30.1 [order requiring security for maintenance payments] of the Act;

(n) requiring an individual or authorized representative of a corporation, partnership or proprietorship to attend a default hearing or committal hearing and to file financial information under section 39 (1) [third parties compellable] of the Act.

(2) A party who applies for the following orders under section 46 [order restraining harassment] of the Act must file and serve on each other party and every other person who may be affected by the order, at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance, an application in Form 35 [Application for Order Under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act] and supporting documents:

(a) restraining any person from molesting, annoying, harassing, communicating with or attempting to molest, annoy, harass or communicate with a creditor, a debtor or the Director of Maintenance Enforcement, a person to whom the director has delegated a power, duty or function under section 2 [Director of Maintenance Enforcement] of the Act or an employee of that person;

(b) requiring a person named in an order under paragraph (a)

(i) to enter into a recognizance in Form 36 [Recognizance – Family Maintenance Enforcement Act], with or without sureties, or to post a bond, and

(ii) to report to the court, or a person named by the court, at the times and places and for the period the court directs.

(3) A restraining order under subrule (2) must be in Form 37 [Restraining Order – Family Maintenance Enforcement Act].

Trial preparation conference

143 A judge may direct that a trial preparation conference be scheduled before the hearing of an application for an order under rule 142 [applications for orders under Family Maintenance Enforcement Act].

Service of documents under this Division

144 (1) The following documents require personal service by an adult who is not a party leaving a copy of the document with the person to be served:

(a) a general summons;

(b) a summons to a committal hearing;

(c) a request for court enforcement under the Act.

(2) Documents that do not require personal service under subrule (1) must be served as follows:

(a) if there is an address, an email address or a fax number provided for the address for service on the court file for the person to be served, there may be service

(i) by leaving the document at the person's address for service,

(ii) by mailing the document by ordinary mail to the person's address for service,

(iii) by emailing the document to the email address, or

(iv) by faxing the document to the fax number;

(b) if there is no address for service on the court file for the person to be served, there may be personal service

(i) by having an adult leave the documents with that person, or

(ii) as otherwise ordered by the court.

(3) The court may order that a document be served by a peace officer.

General rules in respect of hearing of matters under this Division

145 (1) Evidence for a hearing may be provided

(a) orally on oath or affirmation, or

(b) by affidavit.

(2) If a party does not attend a hearing, the hearing may proceed without that party.

(3) A party may apply to transfer a court file begun under this Division by using the process set out in Division 2 [Case Management Orders] of Part 5 [Applying for Other Orders].

Part 11 – Consequences

Application of Part

146 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Non-compliance with rules

147 (1) A judge may do one or more of the following if a party does not comply with these rules or an order made by a judge or family justice manager under these rules:

(a) disregard a document filed in the course of the proceedings;

(b) change or cancel an order;

(c) order a court appearance to be cancelled or adjourned or to continue as if the party were not present, whether the party is actually present or not;

(d) require that the party meet a requirement by a specified date;

(e) require that the party pay

(i) any other person for all or part of the expenses reasonably and necessarily incurred by that other person as a result of the non-compliance,

(ii) an amount not exceeding $5 000 to or for the benefit of any other person, or a spouse or child whose interests were affected by that person's actions, or

(iii) a fine not exceeding $5 000;

(f) make any order or give any directions that the judge considers necessary and advisable in the circumstances, including an order dismissing or granting an application made.

(2) Unless a judge otherwise orders, a failure to comply with these rules must be treated as an irregularity.

Failure of party to attend court appearance

148 (1) Subject to rule 147 [non-compliance with rules], if a party fails to attend a court appearance at the time scheduled for that court appearance, the judge may, after receipt of any evidence of service of notice the judge considers appropriate, do one or more of the following:

(a) dismiss, cancel or proceed with the court appearance;

(b) draw any inference from the failure to attend that the judge considers appropriate;

(c) grant some or all of the orders sought;

(d) issue a summons in Form 31 [Summons – General].

(2) If no party attends a court appearance, the judge may dismiss the application.

Issuing and enforcing warrants for arrest for failure to attend court appearance

149 (1) If a party who is served with a summons or is present in court when the date for a court appearance is set does not attend the court appearance, the judge may issue a warrant for arrest in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] for the arrest of the party.

(2) A warrant issued under subrule (1) remains in force until

(a) the party named in the warrant attends court either voluntarily or under the warrant, or

(b) the warrant is cancelled.

(3) If arrested, the party named in a warrant issued under subrule (1) must

(a) be brought before a justice as soon as possible, and

(b) be released when the party signs a release in Form 25 [Release from Custody] that requires the party's attendance at court.

(4) The registry must provide notice to each other party of the new hearing date set out in the release form referred to in subrule (3) (b).

(5) If the party named in a warrant does not attend court on a hearing date set out in a release form referred to in subrule (3) (b), the judge may issue a warrant for arrest in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] for the arrest of the party and order that the party be brought to a judge promptly on the arrest.

Hearings about extraordinary remedies under section 231 of Family Law Act

150 (1) In this rule, "hearing about an extraordinary remedy" means a hearing in which a judge decides whether to make any of the following orders under section 231 [extraordinary remedies] of the Family Law Act:

(a) an order that a person be imprisoned for a term of no more than 30 days if the person failed to comply with an order under the Family Law Act and no other order will be sufficient to secure the person's compliance;

(b) an order requiring a police officer to apprehend a child from a guardian who has wrongfully denied another person parenting time or contact with the child and to take the child to that other person;

(c) an order requiring a police officer to apprehend a child from a person having contact with the child who has wrongfully withheld the child from the child's guardian and to take the child to the guardian.

(2) A judge may make directions as to the conduct of a hearing about an extraordinary remedy, including directions that the hearing be conducted as a trial.

(3) An order made under section 231 (2) [extraordinary remedies] of the Family Law Act for the imprisonment of a person must be in Form 38 [Order for Imprisonment].

Warrants related to orders for imprisonment under section 231 (2) of Family Law Act

151 (1) If the court is of the opinion that an order for imprisonment under section 231 (2) [extraordinary remedies] of the Family Law Act may be necessary, the court may issue a warrant in Form 32 [Warrant for Arrest] that the person be apprehended and brought before the court.

(2) If a person referred to in subrule (1) is arrested and brought before the court, the court in a summary manner may determine whether imprisonment is necessary.

(3) No determination may be made under subrule (2) without the person being given a reasonable opportunity to show why imprisonment is not necessary.

(4) The court may order the release of a person apprehended under subrule (1) on receiving an undertaking in Form 25 [Release from Custody] from that person.

Suspension of extraordinary remedy

152 The court at any time may direct that an imprisonment ordered under section 231 (2) [extraordinary remedies] of the Family Law Act be suspended for the period or on the terms or conditions the court may specify.

Release of person

153 On application by or on behalf of a person imprisoned under section 231 (2) [extraordinary remedies] of the Family Law Act, the court may release that person, whether or not the period of the committal has elapsed.

Part 12 – General Rules

Division 1 – General Procedural Rules

Application of Part

154 The rules set out in this Part apply in all registries.

Deficient forms

155 (1) A clerk may refuse to accept a form for filing if it is not in the correct form or if the form is not completed in accordance with the instructions.

(2) A party may apply for an order under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] or 63 [case management orders – family justice manager] to permit the filing of a form that is deficient.

Requesting conference or hearing

156 (1) If any of the following circumstances apply, a party may request that a court appearance be scheduled and must file and serve on each other party a request for scheduling in Form 39 [Request for Scheduling]:

(a) the matter was adjourned by the court without setting a new date;

(b) the matter was struck from the court list by the court;

(c) a party was referred to a program, professional or resource, or required to attend, participate or complete a requirement, by the court;

(d) a party was required by the court to address a deficiency under these rules;

(e) a review of the terms of the order was provided for in the order;

(f) a party is applying to change, suspend or cancel an interim order under section 216 (3) [court may make interim orders] of the Family Law Act;

(g) a party is applying for an interim order under section 216 or 217 [interim orders before changing, suspending or terminating orders] of the Family Law Act after attendance at a family management conference.

(2) A party requesting that a court appearance be scheduled must serve the form under subrule (1) on each other party at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance.

Judge may waive or modify requirements in rules

157 A judge may, at any time, waive or modify

(a) any requirement under these rules, including a requirement related to service or giving notice to a person under these rules, or

(b) a time limit set by these rules or by an order of the court, even after the time limit has expired.

Judge may give directions

158 A judge may give directions on any procedural matter that is not provided for in these rules or an enactment.

Judge may change, suspend or cancel orders made in absence of party

159 (1) A judge may change, suspend or cancel an order made in the absence of a party if the judge determines that

(a) the absent party applied in accordance with subrule (2) for the change, suspension or cancellation of the order within a reasonable time, and

(b) either of the following apply:

(i) the absent party did not receive notice of the application under which the order was made;

(ii) there is a good reason to change, suspend or cancel the order.

(2) To apply to change, suspend or cancel an order made under subrule (1), the absent party must file and serve on each other party the following at least 7 days before the date referred to in the application for the court appearance:

(a) an application for a case management order in Form 10 [Application for Case Management Order];

(b) any supporting evidence or documents.

Practice directions

160 The chief judge of the court may issue practice directions consistent with these rules and their purpose.

Child's views

161 If a case involves a child, the child's views must be considered unless it is inappropriate to do so.

Child's lawyer

162 (1) If a case involves a child and the child is represented by a lawyer in the case, the lawyer for the child must

(a) file and serve on the parties Form 40 [Notice of Lawyer for Child] when the lawyer starts representing the child, and

(b) file and serve on the parties Form 41 [Notice of Removal of Lawyer for Child] when the lawyer stops representing the child.

(2) The lawyer for a child

(a) must be notified of all hearings, conferences and trial dates relating to the case,

(b) must be served all documents that the parties are served, and

(c) may attend all hearings, conferences and trial dates relating to the case.

(3) For the purposes of these rules, a lawyer may start representing a child at any time during a case.

Party's lawyer

163 (1) For the purposes of these rules, a lawyer may start representing a party in a case by a party or the lawyer

(a) providing the lawyer's contact information and address for service of documents on an application or reply, or

(b) filing and serving on each party a notice of lawyer for party in Form 42 [Notice of Lawyer for Party].

(2) A lawyer who represents a party under subrule (1) may represent the party

(a) for all issues in a case, or

(b) for one or more limited purposes identified in the notice of lawyer for party filed under subrule (1) (b).

(3) For the purposes of these rules, a lawyer stops representing a party in a case if one of the following applies:

(a) the party or the lawyer files and serves on each party a notice of removal of lawyer in Form 43 [Notice of Removal of Lawyer for Party];

(b) the party or a new lawyer for the party files and serves on each party a notice of lawyer in Form 42 [Notice of Lawyer for Party] identifying the new lawyer;

(c) the limited purpose for which the lawyer was representing the party, as described in the notice of lawyer for party filed under subrule (1) (b), has ended.

Attendance by means of electronic communication

164 (1) The court may allow a person to attend a court appearance by means of electronic communication, including by telephone or video conference.

(2) The court may consider the following in making an order or direction under subrule (1):

(a) the distance between the person's residence and the location of the court appearance;

(b) difficulty in attending because of illness or disability;

(c) the financial cost associated with attending;

(d) the expense incurred, or savings realized, by using electronic communication;

(e) any concerns related to security, including a risk of family violence;

(f) any difficulty in conducting the court appearance that may arise from using electronic communication.

Copies permissible instead of originals

165 With the permission of the judge or the family justice manager, as applicable, a copy of a document may be used in court instead of the original.

Confidentiality of information

166 A party must not use or disclose any information of any other parties contained in a record provided or entered as evidence under these rules except to the extent necessary to resolve a case under these rules.

Division 2 – General Procedure for Orders

Effective date of orders

167 An order takes effect at the time it is made unless ordered otherwise.

Preparation of orders

168 (1) If one or more of the parties are represented by a lawyer, any one of the lawyers must prepare an order made at a court appearance in Form 44 [Order – General], unless another form is required by these rules, and provide it to any other lawyers for the other parties or, if the parties are unrepresented, to the registry

(a) within 14 days of the date the order is made, or

(b) within the period permitted by the court.

(2) Unless the court orders otherwise, an order that is prepared by a party's lawyer and is not made by consent under section 219 [persons may consent to order being made] of the Family Law Act must be approved and signed

(a) by the party's lawyer, and

(b) if any other party is represented by a lawyer, by the other party's lawyer.

(3) If the other party's lawyer does not approve and sign an order prepared in accordance with subrule (1), reasons for not signing must be provided to whoever prepared the order

(a) within 14 days of the date the order was provided to that other party, or

(b) within the period permitted by the court.

(4) A party who is not represented by a lawyer is not required to sign an order, unless

(a) ordered otherwise by the court, or

(b) required otherwise under these rules.

(5) If no party is represented by a lawyer, a clerk must prepare an order made at a court appearance

(a) within 14 days, or

(b) within the period permitted by the court.

(6) After an order is signed in accordance with subrule (2), it must be delivered to the registry to be signed by the judge or family justice manager, as applicable, and filed.

(7) After an order is filed under subrule (6), the registry must provide a filed copy of the order to each party, or each party's lawyer, who has provided an address for service.

Designate may sign

169 An order to be signed by a judge or family justice manager under these rules may be signed by a designate of the judge or family justice manager.

Correction of orders

170 Any judge may correct, at any time, a clerical mistake or omission in an order.

Division 3 – Affidavits and General Rules for Filing

Form of affidavits

171 (1) Unless a rule provides otherwise, an affidavit must be in Form 45 [Affidavit – General].

(2) An affidavit must

(a) be expressed in the first person and include the name, address and occupation of the person swearing or affirming the affidavit,

(b) state whether the person swearing or affirming the affidavit is a party or the lawyer, agent, director, officer or employee of a party,

(c) be divided into paragraphs numbered consecutively and have page numbers, and

(d) have page numbers for the exhibits if the affidavit has any exhibits.

(3) An affidavit is made when

(a) the person swearing or affirming the affidavit

(i) signs the affidavit, or

(ii) if the person is unable to sign the affidavit, places that person's mark on it, and

(b) the person before whom the affidavit is sworn or affirmed completes and signs a statement confirming that the affidavit was sworn or affirmed in the person's presence.

(4) The person before whom an affidavit is sworn or affirmed must identify each exhibit referred to in the affidavit by signing a certificate placed on or attached to the exhibit.

(5) Subject to subrule (6), an affidavit must state only what a person swearing or affirming the affidavit would be permitted to state in evidence at a trial.

(6) An affidavit may contain statements as to the information and belief of the person swearing or affirming the affidavit, if the source of the information and belief is given.

Filing unsworn documents

172 (1) In this rule, "unsworn document" means any of the following documents that have not been sworn or affirmed:

(a) a financial statement in Form 4 [Financial Statement];

(b) a guardianship affidavit in Form 5 [Guardianship Affidavit];

(c) an application about a protection order in Form 12 [Application About a Protection Order] that has an attached Schedule 1 [Affidavit for Protection Order];

(d) an affidavit in Form 45 [Affidavit – General].

(2) An unsworn document may be filed even though the person who made the document has not sworn or affirmed to its contents if

(a) the person has signed the document, and

(b) it is not practicable for the person to swear or affirm to the contents of the document before the document is filed.

(3) If an unsworn document is filed under subrule (2), the person who made the document must be available to swear or affirm that the contents of the document are true, as may be required by a judge or family justice manager, including at a subsequent court appearance.

Requirement to file additional copies if not filing electronically

173 Unless the party files electronic documents in accordance with Division 7 [Electronic Filing], a party who files a document under these rules must file

(a) one copy for the court,

(b) one copy for the filing party,

(c) one copy for each party other than the filing party, and

(d) if applicable, one copy for each lawyer for a child.

Who can search court files

174 (1) Unless the court otherwise orders, only the following persons may search a court file under these rules:

(a) a party to the court file;

(b) a lawyer, whether or not the lawyer represents a party, and including a lawyer for a child;

(c) a family justice counsellor;

(d) a person authorized by a judge;

(e) a person authorized in writing by a party to the court file or by the party's lawyer.

(2) Despite subrule (1), any person may access the following information about a case, unless the court otherwise orders:

(a) the names of the parties as identified in the case;

(b) the case file number;

(c) the registry at which the court file is located;

(d) the date the case was started.

Division 4 – Service

Address for service

175 (1) Each party who files an application or reply must provide an address for service where the party can receive notice or service of documents.

(2) An address for service may be an address other than the party's home address.

(3) Each party is responsible for checking, on a regular basis, for the receipt of notice or service of documents at that party's address for service, including any email address or fax number that was provided for service.

(4) If a party's address for service changes, the party must file a notice of change of address in Form 46 [Notice of Address Change] and serve a copy on each other party as soon as possible.

(5) If a party's address for service is outside British Columbia, the party must provide an email address for service.

Ordinary service

176 Except when a document must be provided to another person using personal service, a document may be provided

(a) by leaving the document at the person's address for service,

(b) by mailing the document by registered mail to the person's address for service,

(c) by mailing the document by ordinary mail to the person's address for service,

(d) by emailing the document to the person's email address for service, or

(e) by faxing the document to the person's fax number for service.

Personal service of certain documents

177 The following documents require personal service by an adult who is not a party leaving a copy of the document with the person to be served:

(a) an application about a family law matter;

(b) a summons or subpoena;

(c) an application about a protection order;

(d) a protection order, if the person against whom the protection order application is made was not present in court;

(e) a request for court enforcement under the Family Maintenance Enforcement Act;

(f) any document that the court has determined requires personal service;

(g) any application that is to be served on a party who has not provided an address for service.

Summons

178 Unless otherwise ordered by the court, a summons under these rules must be served at least 7 days before the date set in the summons for the court appearance.

Service completed

179 A document is deemed to have been served on a person as follows:

(a) if served by leaving a copy at an address for service

(i) at or before 4 p.m. on a day that is not a Saturday or holiday, the document is deemed to be served on the day of service, or

(ii) on a Saturday or holiday or after 4 p.m. on any other day, the document is deemed to be served on the next day that is not a Saturday or holiday;

(b) if served by sending a copy by ordinary mail to an address for service, on the 14th day after it is mailed;

(c) if served by transmitting a copy by email to the email address provided in the address for service

(i) at or before 4 p.m. on a day that is not a Saturday or holiday, the document is deemed to be served on the day of transmission, or

(ii) on a Saturday or holiday or after 4 p.m. on any other day, the document is deemed to be served on the next day that is not a Saturday or holiday;

(d) if served by transmitting a copy by fax to the fax number provided in the address for service

(i) at or before 4 p.m. on a day that is not a Saturday or holiday, the document is deemed to be served on the day of transmission, or

(ii) on a Saturday or holiday or after 4 p.m. on any other day, the document is deemed to be served on the next day that is not a Saturday or holiday;

(e) if served by personal service

(i) at or before 4 p.m. on a day that is not a Saturday or holiday, the document is deemed to be served on the day of service, or

(ii) on a Saturday or holiday or after 4 p.m. on any other day, the document is deemed to be served on the next day that is not a Saturday or holiday.

Documents served on the Director of Maintenance Enforcement

180 A document may be served on the Director of Maintenance Enforcement by mailing the document to the postal address provided by the director.

Documents served on a person who is not a party

181 A document other than a summons or subpoena may be served on a person who is not a party by leaving the document with the person or by mailing by ordinary mail the document to that person's postal address.

Alternative methods of service

182 (1) If it is not practicable to serve a document in accordance with these rules, a party may apply under rule 62 [case management orders – judge] or 63 [case management orders – family justice manager] for an order by a judge or family justice manager, as applicable, that the document

(a) must be served by a peace officer, or

(b) may be served using an alternative method of service, if the court is satisfied that the person to be served

(i) cannot be found after a diligent search,

(ii) is evading service of the document, or

(iii) is temporarily outside British Columbia.

(2) If an order is made that permits an alternative method of service for a document, a copy of the order, the application under subrule (1) and any supporting documents must be served with the document, unless the permitted method of service is notice to be given by advertisement.

(3) If the court orders notice to be given by advertisement, that advertisement must be in Form 47 [Notice by Advertisement] and the party who applied for the order must pay for the advertisement.

Proving service

183 (1) Subject to subrule (2), service of a document may be proved by filing a certificate of service in Form 7 [Certificate of Service] and attaching a copy of the document served.

(2) Service of the following documents may be proved by filing the applicable affidavit:

(a) for a summons or subpoena, an affidavit of personal service in Form 48 [Affidavit of Personal Service];

(b) for an order about a protection order, an affidavit of personal service of a protection order in Form 49 [Affidavit of Personal Service of Protection Order].

(3) Service of a document on a lawyer or articled student may be proved by filing a copy of the document signed by the lawyer or articled student or by a partner or employee of the firm of the lawyer or articled student.

Oral proof of service

184 Instead of requiring proof of service under rule 183 [proving service], the court may allow a person to prove by sworn or affirmed oral evidence that the person has served a document.

Admissibility of other evidence of service

185 Nothing in rule 184 [oral proof of service] restricts the admissibility of any other evidence of service that the court may consider appropriate in the circumstances.

Service outside British Columbia

186 An application or other document may be served on a person outside British Columbia if the order sought in the application is within the jurisdiction of the court under section 10 [real and substantial connection] of the Court Jurisdiction and Proceedings Transfer Act or Division 7 [Extraprovincial Matters Respecting Parenting Arrangements] or 8 [International Child Abduction] of Part 4 of the Family Law Act.

Service effective if acknowledged

187 Despite any requirement about service under this Part, service of a document is deemed to be effective if the party who was served gives written acknowledgement of receiving the document.

Division 5 – Changing a Filed Document

Changing filed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application

188 (1) A party may change anything in an application about a family law matter, a reply or a reply to a counter application,

(a) without a court order, before the first family management conference, or

(b) with a court order or consent of the parties, at any time.

(2) A party may apply under rule 64 [applying for case management orders] to a judge or a family justice manager for an order to change anything in an application about a family law matter, a reply or a reply to a counter application.

(3) If a party makes a change as described in subrule (1), the application about a family law matter, reply or reply to a counter application must

(a) indicate at the top of the document that the document has been changed,

(b) indicate the date on which the change to the document is made,

(c) include an indication of the changes being made to the document by

(i) underlining anything that is being added to the document, and

(ii) striking out anything that is being deleted from the document, and

(d) include a reference to the order that authorizes the change, if applicable.

Service of changed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application

189 An application about a family law matter, a reply or a reply to a counter application that is changed under rule 188 [changing filed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application] must be served on each other party within 7 days of filing the changed application about a family law matter, reply or reply to counter application.

Reply to change

190 (1) Subject to subrule (2) and rule 15 [intention to proceed in certain cases after one year], a party who has been served a changed application about a family law matter or reply under rule 189 [service of changed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application] and who chooses to file a reply or reply to counter application must file and serve the reply document within 14 days of being served the changed application about a family law matter or reply, as applicable.

(2) If an application about a family law matter or reply has been changed under rule 188 [changing filed application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application] to add a new application about child support or spousal support, a party who has been served the changed application or reply and who chooses to file a reply must file and serve the following within 30 days of service of the changed application:

(a) the reply document;

(b) the applicable additional documents described in rule 25 [additional requirements when applying for certain orders].

Division 6 – Discontinuing an Application, Reply or Reply to Counter Application

Discontinuing an application about family law matter, reply or reply to counter application

191 (1) A party may discontinue all or part of an application, a reply or a reply to a counter application by doing the following:

(a) filing a notice of discontinuance in Form 50 [Notice of Discontinuance] in accordance with subrules (2) and (3), as applicable;

(b) serving the notice of discontinuance on each other party before the earlier of the following dates:

(i) 14 days after the party filed the notice;

(ii) the date of the next scheduled court appearance.

(2) If a trial preparation conference is scheduled, a notice of discontinuance may be filed under subrule (1)

(a) before the trial preparation conference, or

(b) after the trial preparation conference, with the consent of the other parties or with permission of the court.

(3) If a trial preparation conference is not scheduled, a notice of discontinuance may be filed under subrule (1)

(a) at least 30 days before the scheduled trial date, or

(b) less than 30 days before the scheduled trial date, with the consent of the other parties or with permission of the court.

(4) A party may only discontinue an application about a family law matter, a reply or a reply to a counter application under this rule if the application or reply was made by the party.

(5) The discontinuation of an application about a family law matter, a reply or a reply to a counter application by a party under this rule does not affect any application or reply made by another party.

(6) Subject to the limitation periods set out in sections 147 (4) (b) [duty to provide support for child] and 198 (2) [time limits] of the Family Law Act, the discontinuation of an application about a family law matter by a party under this rule does not prevent the party from filing a new application about the same family law matter at a later date, unless a judge orders otherwise.

Division 7 – Electronic Filing

Electronic filing

192 (1) A person filing documents in a registry by means of electronic filing must

(a) enter into an agreement with the Court Services Branch of the Ministry of Attorney General respecting the terms and conditions under which those filings may be made, and

(b) submit documents for filing in accordance with that agreement.

(2) A person may electronically transmit a document other than a certified copy of an order to a registry for filing.

Electronic filing of affidavits or other signed documents

193 (1) An affidavit or other signed document that is being filed for evidentiary purposes, if submitted for filing electronically, must clearly identify the signatory and must be accompanied by a statement, in Form 51 [Electronic Filing Statement], of the lawyer acting for the person on whose behalf the document is submitted for filing or, if that person is unrepresented, by a statement of that person, in that electronic filing statement, indicating that

(a) the original paper version of the document appears to bear an original signature of the person identified as the signatory and the person making the electronic filing statement has no reason to believe that the signature on the document is not the signature of the identified signatory, and

(b) the version of the document that is being submitted for filing electronically appears to be a true copy of the original paper version of the document and the person making the electronic filing statement has no reason to believe that it is not a true copy of the original paper version.

(2) A person who, under subrule (1), submits a document for filing electronically under these rules must

(a) keep the original paper version of the document until the earliest of

(i) the date on which the proceeding, including any appeals, is finally disposed of,

(ii) the date on which the appeal period for the proceeding has expired, if no notice of appeal respecting the proceeding is filed within that period, and

(iii) the date on which a judge orders that the original paper version be filed, and

(b) if an order is made under paragraph (a) (iii) of this subrule, file the original paper version promptly after that order is made.

Fax filing

194 (1) A clerk may accept for filing any document, other than a certified copy of an order, that has been transmitted to the registry by fax.

(2) A clerk may refuse to accept a document for filing that is transmitted by fax for any of the following reasons:

(a) the document is not accompanied by a fax cover sheet in Form 52 [Fax Filing Cover Page – Provincial Court Family];

(b) the document relates to more than one court file;

(c) in the opinion of the clerk, the document is illegible and cannot be used by the court;

(d) the document is incomplete;

(e) the document should have been transmitted to another registry;

(f) the document does not otherwise conform to practice and procedure under these rules and any applicable enactment.

(3) A document that is transmitted by fax and received by the registry will be filed as soon as possible unless the document is refused under subrule (2).

(4) A person who, under subrule (1), submits a document for filing by fax under these rules must

(a) keep the original paper version of the document until the earliest of

(i) the date on which the proceeding, including any appeals, is finally disposed of,

(ii) the date on which the appeal period for the proceeding has expired, if no notice of appeal respecting the proceeding is filed within that period, and

(iii) the date on which a judge orders that the original paper version be filed, and

(b) if an order is made under paragraph (a) (iii) of this subrule, file the original paper version promptly after that order is made.

(5) If a clerk accepts for filing a document that has been transmitted by fax, the clerk must send a confirmation of the filing to the person who transmitted the document by doing one of the following:

(a) transmitting the confirmation by fax to the person;

(b) providing the confirmation in a manner agreed to by the clerk and the person.

(6) A confirmation under subrule (5) must include

(a) a cover sheet,

(b) the first page of the document that was filed, showing the date stamp and file number, and

(c) any other page that was altered by the court or the registry.

Part 13 – Transition

Definitions for Part 13

195 In this Part:

"effective date of these rules" means the date on which this rule comes into force;

"former rules" means the Provincial Court (Family) Rules, B.C. Reg. 417/98;

"pre-existing proceeding" means a proceeding that was started under the former rules but not concluded before the effective date of these rules.

These rules apply to pre-existing proceedings

196 (1) A pre-existing proceeding continues under and in accordance with these rules as though the proceeding had been started under these rules.

(2) For greater certainty, for the purposes of subrule (1),

(a) a step taken under the former rules in a pre-existing proceeding is deemed to have been taken under these rules,

(b) a form filed under the former rules for a purpose relating to a pre-existing proceeding must be treated as if it were the corresponding form that would be filed under these rules for that same or a similar purpose,

(c) a notice of motion that was filed under the former rules continues under these rules as if it were an application for an order or direction, and

(d) if a form was filed under the former rules but not served before the effective date of these rules, the form must be served in accordance with the applicable requirements relating to service under these rules.

Judge may make case management order to resolve difficulty or doubt

197 A judge, on application or on the judge's own initiative, may make orders or directions under Division 2 [Case Management Orders] of Part 5 [Applying for Other Orders] the judge considers appropriate if

(a) there is doubt about the application or operation of these rules to a pre-existing proceeding, or

(b) any difficulty, injustice or impossibility arises as a result of the application of rule 196 [these rules apply to pre-existing proceedings].

Registry may temporarily accept certain forms under former rules

198 For the period of 30 days after the effective date of these rules, the registry may accept for filing either of the following forms under the former rules in substitution for the related form under these rules:

(a) a reply in Form 3 [Reply];

(b) a financial statement in Form 4 [Financial Statement] that is filed with a reply.

Appendix


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