VOLUME 32, NUMBER 1                                     Cited as 32 O.F.L.R.                             JULY 2018

                                        Martha McCarthy, LSM and Joanna Radbord, LSM, Editors

                                                      • The Secret Life of Tax Returns: Part 2 —
       • IN THIS ISSUE •
                                                            Personal Income Tax Returns •
                                                                  Richard E. Davies and Antonina Wasowska
The Secret Life of Tax Returns: Part 2
— Personal Income Tax Returns
   Richard E. Davies and Antonina
   Wasowska ................................... 185

Proceed with Caution: Summary
Judgment in Child Protection Cases
   Stephanie Giannandrea and
   Jonathan Robinson ..................... 192

                                                      In Part 1 of this article (published in the May 2018 issue of
                                                      the Ontario Family Law Reporter), we provided a roadmap
                                                      for navigating corporate income tax returns, discussed some
                                                      common questions relating to a spouse’s corporate holdings,
                                                      and identified where the answers can be found on a corporate
                                                      income tax return. Continuing here in Part II, we provide a
                                                      roadmap for navigating personal income tax returns, and
                                                      highlight some key information therein.
                                                      Personal income tax returns are one of the first items requested
                                                      in a matrimonial dispute as they form the basis, or starting
                                                      point, for calculating a spouse’s income for support purposes
                                                      under the Federal Child Support Guidelines (the “CSG”). Per-
                                                      sonal income tax returns for the three most recent years are re-
                                                      quired to be produced by each spouse.
                                                      While most people are somewhat familiar with personal income
                                                      tax returns, we still find that many family law practitioners do
                                                      not fully utilize the information that a spouse’s personal income
                                                      tax returns can often provide for family law purposes.

                                                                                                 Continued on Page 186

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                   Volume 32, Issue 1

What should a personal income tax                           for missed income amounts, or deductions which
return look like?                                           are disallowed; therefore, it is good practice to
Before we dive into the details, it is important to         request NOAs and NORAs for all years in which
                                                            a spouse’s income is being calculated.
understand the core elements of the full personal
income tax return.                                          Further, in situations where the authenticity of the
Similar to corporate income tax returns, a person-          taxpayer’s personal income tax returns is being
                                                            called into question, NOAs and NORAs provide
al income tax return (or “T1”) is comprised of a
                                                            third-party confirmation which can be used to
T1 jacket (first four to five pages) and supporting
                                                            verify the accuracy of the tax returns provided.
schedules. The T1 jacket includes general identi-
fying information about the taxpayer, as well as            Why should I review the T1 Jacket
summary calculations of their income sources                in detail?
and deductions, and the taxpayer’s total refund or          The first page of the T1 jacket includes basic in-
balance owing for the particular year under re-
                                                            formation such as the taxpayer’s name, social in-
view (more details below). However, unlike a
                                                            surance number, and address, as well as the year
corporate income tax return which relies on a
                                                            for which the return was prepared. The first page
company’s financial statements as the starting
                                                            also includes a “marital status” check box which
point for calculating taxable income, personal
                                                            will identify when your client and their spouse
income tax returns should include all of the tax-
                                                            first started filing as separated.
payer’s underlying income tax slips (i.e., T4, T3,
T5, etc.).                                                  For years in which your client filed as married,
                                                            their spouse’s net income should be listed just
It is common for clients to provide only the T1
                                                            below the marital status. Therefore, a quick look
jacket, a condensed T1 return, or sometimes
                                                            at the first page of the jacket for years prior to
even just a one-page T183 — “Information Re-
                                                            separation can give you a rough idea of what
turn for Electronic Filing of an Individual’s In-
                                                            your client’s spouse’s income may be, and how
come Tax and Benefit Return” in response to a
                                                            that might impact your client’s support entitle-
request for their personal income tax returns.
                                                            ment or obligation.
However, all three of these scenarios are inade-
quate and fail to provide a complete picture of             Page one of the T1 jacket also indicates the tax-
the taxpayer’s income.                                      payer’s province of residence. This is important
                                                            where the calculations of a spouse’s income for
Do I really need to request a tax-                          support purposes include income tax gross-ups,
payer’s Notices of Assessment and                           as personal income tax rates vary depending on
Reassessment?                                               the taxpayer’s province of residence.
For each year in which a taxpayer files a personal
                                                            Will a spouse’s Canadian personal
income tax return, they will receive a Notice of
                                                            income tax return include all of
Assessment (“NOA”), and sometimes a Notice of
                                                            their income?
Reassessment (“NORA”) once the return has
been reviewed and assessed by the Canada Reve-              Under the Canadian Income Tax Act (“ITA”),
nue Agency (“CRA”). We often see situations                 Canadian residents are taxed on their worldwide
where taxpayers’ returns are adjusted by the CRA            income, therefore a taxpayer’s T1 should include

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                 Volume 32, Issue 1

all of their reportable income sources, regardless       Can I find required Schedule III Ad-
of where they were earned. However, we often             justments on a taxpayer’s personal
see situations where taxpayers who earn signifi-         income tax return?
cant income in foreign jurisdictions do not report
                                                         Schedule III of the CSG outlines required ad-
such income, either by mistake or in order to re-
                                                         justments to a taxpayer’s Line 150. Certain of
duce their taxes payable in Canada.
                                                         these adjustments can be found on page 3 of the
In situations where unreported foreign income is         T1 jacket, which shows the calculation of a tax-
suspected, you may wish to consider retaining a          payer’s net income at line 236. For example, an-
forensic expert who can assist in determining            nual union, professional, and like dues are de-
whether a taxpayer is underreporting their in-           ducted at line 212, carrying charges and interest
come (e.g., through tracing, source and use of           expenses are deducted at line 221 (with support-
funds, and/or lifestyle analyses). In order to in-       ing detail provided on Schedule 4 of the personal
vestigate this however, further documents need           income tax return, as discussed below), and other
to be obtained.                                          employment expenses are deducted at line 229.
In all cases where a taxpayer has foreign in-            Where can I find other information
come, an additional request should be made for           required to adjust a client’s Line
any personal income tax returns filed in other           150 income?
                                                         As noted, a taxpayer’s personal income tax return
What is Line 150 and where do I                          should include all of the underlying schedules.
find it?                                                 While not an exhaustive list, some of the most
Section 16 of the CSG specifies that “Subject to         common schedules which include useful infor-
sections 17 to 20, a spouse’s annual income is           mation for calculating a spouse’s income for sup-
determined using the sources of income set out           port purposes are outlined below.
under the heading “Total income” in the T1               Adjustment for Actual Capital Gains/Losses
General form issued by the Canada Revenue                Line 150 income includes taxable capital gains
Agency and is adjusted in accordance with                earned by a taxpayer during the year. However,
Schedule III”.                                           the CSG require that taxable capital gains be ad-
On a taxpayer’s personal income tax return, their        justed to actual capital gains (in excess of any
“Total Income” is calculated at Line 150, and as         actual capital losses) realized by the spouse dur-
such, is often referred to in matrimonial matters        ing the year. Schedule 3 of the personal income
simply as “Line 150 income”. The calculation of          tax return — “Capital Gains (or Losses)” can be
Line 150 income, which is the starting point of          used to identify your client’s actual capital gains.
most calculations of income for support purposes,        With respect to losses, we note that the CSG only
shows the breakdown of all of the taxpayer’s re-         address actual capital losses where actual capital
ported sources of income, including references to        gains are “in excess”. Where a spouse is in a net
the underlying schedules and slips where these           loss position, the CSG are silent on whether actu-
amounts are calculated. Line 150 income can be           al capital losses over and above any actual capital
found at the bottom of page 2 of the T1 jacket.          gains should be included in the calculation of a

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                Volume 32, Issue 1

spouse’s income. This is a point of much discus-         More commonly, clients will claim the full
sion and dispute.                                        amount of interest paid on a line of credit as a
Adjustment for Actual Dividends                          deduction, even where part of the funds were
                                                         used for personal reasons instead of for the pur-
Schedule III of the CSG also indicates that taxa-
                                                         pose of earning taxable income. Therefore, we
ble dividends from Canadian companies should
                                                         recommend that any time you see significant car-
be replaced by the actual amount of dividends
                                                         rying charges and interest expenses being deduct-
received. However, unlike capital gains (or loss-
                                                         ed on a taxpayer’s Schedule 4, you investigate in
es), the actual amount of dividends received is
                                                         order to fully understand the nature of the ex-
not reported on the underlying schedules. As
                                                         pense, and whether it is a reasonable expense to
such, the underlying tax slips need to be reviewed
                                                         be deducting. If there is no link to any income
in order to determine the actual amounts re-
                                                         earning potential, the carrying charges and inter-
ceived. In some cases, a tax slip summary sched-
                                                         est expenses should not be deducted in calculat-
ule may be included with the personal income tax
                                                         ing the spouse’s income for support purposes.
return, which would also show the actual
amounts received.                                        Personal Expenses Deducted from Business
                                                         Earnings and Capital Cost Allowance Claimed
Adjustment for Carrying Charges and Inter-               on Real Property
est Expense
                                                         Where a taxpayer is self-employed, their busi-
The CSG allow for the deduction of certain carry-        ness or professional earnings will be reported on
ing charges and interest expenses in calculating a       Schedule T2125 — “Statement of Business or
spouse’s income. The amounts actually deducted           Professional Activities”. Schedule T2125 in-
by a taxpayer in a given year can be found on            cludes a breakdown of the different types of ex-
Schedule 4 — “Statement of Investment In-                penses claimed by the business during the year,
come”; however, carrying charges and interest            which should be reviewed in order to identify
expenses need to be incurred for the purpose of          possible personal expenses (e.g., meals and en-
earning taxable income in order to be deductible.        tertainment, automotive expenses, travel, home
From time to time, we have found that taxpayers          office, payments to related parties, etc.) which
will report carrying charges and interest expenses       need to be added back, and possibly grossed-up,
that do not meet the deductibility criteria.             when calculating a spouse’s income for support
For example, in a recent case in which we were           purposes.
engaged to calculate income, a client’s account-         Schedule T776 — “Statement of Real Estate
ant was writing off the same amount of interest          Rentals” calculates a taxpayer’s income from any
expense every year, as the client had instructed         personally held real estate. Included are lists of
them that the amount that had initially been bor-        the addresses of all rental properties, as well as
rowed to invest in a business had not changed.           the names of any co-owners and the ownership
However, the business in which the client invest-        percentage held by each. As such, it can provide
ed was wound down long ago, and as such, the             a useful reference for identifying assets to be in-
interest paid by the taxpayer no longer met the          cluded on a client’s statement of Net Family
criteria for deductibility.                              Property (“NFP”).

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                           Volume 32, Issue 1

Further, if a taxpayer reports income from real              must be filed by June 15th), you should always
estate, the expenses on Schedule T776 should be              request the parties’ personal income tax returns
reviewed to identify potential adjustments re-               for the year before the separation date. If there is
quired to Line 150 income in order to calculate              a balance at year-end, you will need to confirm
the spouse’s income for support purposes. Specif-            either with your client, or by reviewing state-
ically, Schedule III of the CSG indicates that the           ments from the CRA, whether it was outstanding
deduction for any allowable capital cost allow-              at the date of separation.
ances with respect to real property claimed by the           As income taxes are payable by April 30th of the
spouse should be included in the spouse’s in-                following year, separation dates between April
come. It is also good practice to review the other           and June are the most likely to have tax balances
expenses being claimed on Schedule T776 (in                  owing which may need to be included for NFP
addition to any claimed on Schedule T2125) in                purposes. Depending on the date of marriage or
order to identify any amounts that may be per-               date of separation, income tax instalments also
sonal in nature which should be added back, and              need to be considered in determining NFP.
possibly grossed-up, when calculating a spouse’s
income for support purposes.                                 Foreign Assets
                                                             Where a taxpayer has foreign property with a cost
How can a client’s personal income
                                                             base of over $100,000 at any time in a given year,
tax returns help in identifying assets
                                                             they need to file Form T1135 — “Foreign In-
and liabilities to be included on a
                                                             come Verification Statement” with their personal
statement of net family property?
                                                             income tax return. If your client has checked off
While family lawyers primarily rely on personal              “yes” to the foreign property question on page 2
income tax returns as a tool for determining a               of the jacket, you will want to ensure that they
spouse’s income for support purposes, personal               have also provided a copy of the completed Form
income tax returns can also provide a useful                 T1135 for each year in question.
check to confirm that all of the assets and liabili-
                                                             Form T1135 was revamped by the CRA in 2015
ties have been included on a client’s NFP as at
                                                             such that the information disclosed is now more
the marriage and separation dates.
                                                             detailed. Effective for 2015 and later tax years,
One often overlooked property item is a client’s             where a client has foreign property with a cost
tax balance owing or receivable, which can be                base of between $100,000 and $250,000 they can
found on the bottom of page 4 of the T1 jacket.              choose to report under the simplified reporting
Particularly, where a taxpayer is self-employed or           method (part A of the form).1 The simplified re-
earns the majority of their income from invest-              porting method indicates the type of foreign
ments (and therefore no tax amounts are withheld             property owned (e.g., funds held outside Canada,
at source), the year-end balances owing may be               indebtedness owed by non-residents, etc.), and
significant.                                                 the top three countries where the assets are held.
As tax returns for a given year are filed the fol-
lowing year (e.g., personal income tax returns are
required to be filed on April 30th, except for self-         1
                                                                 The simplified method is similar to the disclosure that
employed individuals and their spouses which                     was required prior to 2015 for all foreign property with
                                                                 a cost base of over $100,000.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                Volume 32, Issue 1

Under the detailed reporting method (part B of          As discussed earlier, Schedule 4 also lists any
the form), the taxpayer needs to individually list      carrying charges and interest expenses incurred
each asset held under the relevant categories. For      during the year to earn income. The carrying
example, for the category “Funds held outside           charges and interest expense details often list the
Canada”, the taxpayer would need to list each           bank or broker names as well as account num-
bank where funds are held, the maximum funds            bers; therefore a review of this section can also
held during the year, the funds held at year-end,       help identify assets (e.g., broker accounts) or lia-
and the total amount of income earned.                  bilities (e.g., lines of credit) which should be in-
Whether the simplified or detailed reporting            cluded on a client’s NFP Statement.
method is used, Form T1135 provides a useful            Where are Carryforward Balances
check, and can indicate that there are foreign as-      recorded?
sets missing from a client’s NFP statement. Note        Where a taxpayer has personal loss carryforward
that certain foreign property such as property
                                                        balances, they are often summarized on a car-
used to carry on an active business, and shares of
                                                        ryforward summary schedule, and are broken
a foreign affiliate, do not need to be reported on
                                                        down by the type of loss incurred (i.e., net capital
Form T1135.
                                                        losses, non-capital losses, etc.). While these
Other Assets and Liabilities                            amounts would typically not be relevant for de-
As discussed above, Schedule 3 of the personal          termining income for support purposes, we note
income tax return lists any capital gains or losses     that they may be relevant where a spouse owns
arising from asset sales in the given year. Where       an interest in a corporate entity. In such cases the
the separation date was a number of years ago,          losses may be relevant when calculating contin-
reviewing Schedule 3 for subsequent years can be        gent income taxes on eventual disposition of the
helpful to identify assets that were owned at the       property for NFP purposes.
separation date but subsequently disposed of.           Similarly, the summary schedule may also in-
Similarly, a review of Schedule 3 for the personal      clude the spouse’s remaining lifetime capital
income tax returns of a spouse in the years fol-        gains exemption available, which again may be
lowing the date of marriage can help identify           relevant when calculating contingent income tax-
which assets were owned at that time.                   es on disposition for NFP purposes. Where appli-
Schedule 4 of the personal income tax return,           cable, this amount should be confirmed with your
“Statement of Investment Income” shows a                client or their accountant.
breakdown of the sources of a client’s investment       What if my client no longer has
income, including banking institutions, and             copies of their old personal income
sometimes also account numbers. As such, a re-          tax returns?
view of the detailed income sources for the years
                                                        Where access to historical personal income tax
around the date of separation is another useful
                                                        returns is an issue, we note that the Government
completeness check to identify a spouse’s in-
                                                        of Canada has a website where individual tax-
come-generating assets for inclusion on their
                                                        payers can access historical personal tax infor-
NFP statement.
                                                        mation. Once registered, an individual can re-
                                                        trieve data relating to their personal income tax

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                 Volume 32, Issue 1

returns going back many years, including but not          shareholder disputes, as well as complex commer-
limited to, NOAs, NORAs, and income tax slips             cial litigation including investor fraud investiga-
(i.e., T4s, T3s, T5s, etc.). This government ser-         tions, breach of contract, patent infringement, and
vice can be a valuable information resource for           other intellectual property disputes.
you and your clients.                                     His casework has encompassed companies rang-
Conclusion                                                ing from regional and privately owned, to multi-
                                                          national, and he has accumulated experience in a
In Part I of this series we delved into the secret
                                                          diverse variety of industries.
life of corporate tax returns and highlighted
some key areas of importance with respect to              Antonina Wasowska, CPA, CA, CBV, CFF is
matrimonial engagements. In Part II we provid-            an Associate Principal at Cohen Hamilton Steger
ed a thorough review of the key sources within            & Co. Inc. where she specializes in business val-
personal income tax returns that can assist a             uation and the quantification of economic dam-
family law practitioner in assessing and verify-          ages. Antonina has particular expertise in busi-
ing a spouse’s income and their net family prop-          ness valuations relating to matrimonial matters,
erty position. While many matrimonial cases               shareholder disputes, corporate re-organizations,
benefit from the financial valuations and income          expropriation, and purchase and sale transactions.
determination expertise of a dedicated Chartered          Antonina’s casework also includes the calcula-
Business Valuator, we hope this two-part series           tion of income for child and spousal support pur-
gives family law practitioners a good starting            poses, and the quantification of damages result-
point for accessing the rich information availa-          ing from breach of contract, expropriation, and
ble in client returns.                                    other financial disputes.
[Richard E. Davies, CPA, CA, CBV, CFE, CFF                Antonina has worked with companies in a broad
practices exclusively in the areas of business valu-      range of industries, including real estate, hotel
ation, quantification of economic damages, and            and hospitality, food and beverage, re-
forensic accounting. He has particular experience         tail/distribution, manufacturing, professional
in business valuations and forensic accounting in-        practices, transportation, and construction.]
vestigations for the purpose of matrimonial and

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                               Volume 32, Issue 1

    • Proceed with Caution: Summary Judgment in Child Protection Cases •
                                    Stephanie Giannandrea and Jonathan Robinson

                                                                    This article explores how the Report of the
                                                                    Motherisk Commission can inform our
                                                                    understanding of summary judgment motions in
                                                                    child protection and offers some examples of how
                                                                    counsel can and should ensure that parents’
                                                                    Charter rights are protected in a system that
                                                                    allows profound government intervention to be
Introduction                                                        adjudicated in summary judgment motions.
Chid protection law is different from other forms                   Expanded Availability of Summary
of civil or family law disputes because every case                  Judgment
assesses the appropriate limits of government
                                                                    This debate is not new. Courts have become
interference in private lives. By issuing a child
                                                                    busier, processes costlier, and over time most
protection application, children’s aid societies can
                                                                    stakeholders in the civil justice system have
remove children from the care of their parents,
                                                                    promoted various ways to make dispute
sometimes permanently, and without any ongoing
                                                                    resolution move more quickly, including use of
contact between parent and child. In most cases,
                                                                    the summary judgment motion. There has been
the respondent parents in these cases are extremely
                                                                    ongoing discussion as to whether it is fair to
vulnerable, and have few resources. In some cases,
                                                                    apply this dispute resolution mechanism to child
Societies can proceed on a summary judgment
                                                                    protection cases, and in particular those involving
basis without a trial. To do that, Societies rely on
                                                                    permanent removal of children.
Rule 16 of the Family Law Rules,1 and on the
Supreme Court’s direction in Hryniak v. Maudlin.2                   In this article, we look mostly at motions in
Summary judgment started in the civil context and                   which Societies sought orders for Crown
was subsequently applied to child protection                        wardship under the former Child and Family
matters. Continuing in that tradition, Hryniak was                  Services Act — the equivalent of orders placing
a case about an action for civil fraud in a                         children in extended society care under s. 101 of
commercial context. Nobody’s s. 7 Charter3 rights                   the Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2017.4
were engaged. Now, the principles outlined in                       In its earlier incarnation, the summary judgment
Hryniak and the amended Rule 16 are used to                         power did not allow courts to assess credibility,
allow provincial governments to permanently                         weigh evidence, or make findings of facts, and
sever parent-child relationships. How, can we                       was found not to violate parents’ Charter rights.5
ensure that parents receive adequate procedural                     The powers of the court on a motion for summary
fairness in these circumstances?                                    judgment were expanded first in the civil context,
                                                                    with amendments to the Rules of Civil
      Family Law Rules, O. Reg. 114/99 [“Rules”].
      [2014] S.C.J. No. 7, 2014 SCC 7 [“Hryniak”].
3                                                                   4
      Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Part 1 of                S.O. 2017, c. 14, Sched. 1.
      the Constititution Act, 1982, being Schedule B to the             Children’s Aid Society of Hamilton v. M.W., [2003]
      Canada Act, 1982.                                                 O.J. No. 220 (S.C.J.).

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                              Volume 32, Issue 1

Procedure,6 and there was divergent                                   motions judge with the evidence required to
jurisprudence at the time as to whether the same                      fairly and justly determine the issue and is a
expanded powers should be adopted in family                           timely, affordable and proportionate
law disputes.7 Rule 16 was amended effective                          procedure, it will be held that there is no
May 2, 2015.8 It is now consistent with the                           genuine issue requiring a trial; and
expanded powers in the Rules of Civil Procedure,                 2.   If there appears to be a genuine issue
as interpreted by Hryniak, and clearly applies to                     requiring a trial, the motions judge is
family law cases including child protection.                          entitled, at her discretion, to weigh evidence,
Some cases will require a trial, and some will not.                   evaluate credibility and draw reasonable
Whether the issue at stake is a purported breach                      inferences, to determine if the need for a trial
of a commercial contract, a disputed obligation to                    can be avoided by using these new tools to
pay child support, or the state’s permanent                           come to a fair and just result.10
removal of a child from his or her family of                     The enhanced fact-finding powers granted to
origin, courts are called on to assess the need for              motion judges may be employed on a motion for
a trial using the same test. That test enables                   summary judgment unless it is in the interests of
courts to weigh evidence, evaluate credibility,                  justice for them to be exercised only at trial. To
draw inferences and order oral evidence to assist                determine whether the interests of justice permit
in determining whether there is a genuine issue                  the use of the expanded fact-finding powers, a
requiring a trial.9                                              court should ask itself: “can the full appreciation
Test for a Summary Judgment Motion                               of the evidence and issues that is required to
Summary judgment is mandatory where there is                     make dispositive findings be achieved by way of
no genuine issue requiring a trial. In Hryniak, the              summary judgment, or can this full appreciation
Court set out a two-step approach for deciding                   only be achieved by way of a trial?”.11
whether a genuine issue requiring trial exists                   On a summary judgment motion, the evidence
under a summary judgment motion, and when to                     need not be equivalent to that at trial but must be
exercise the expanded powers afforded to the                     such that the judge is confident that he or she can
courts under the Rules of Civil Procedure.                       fairly resolve the dispute.12
1.   The motions judge should take a liberal                     Judges hearing summary judgment motions must
     approach only on the evidence before her,                   compare the advantages of proceeding by way of
     without using the new fact-finding powers. If               summary judgment motion against proceeding by
     the summary judgment process provides the                   way of trial. This includes an examination of the
                                                                 relative cost and speed of each medium, the
     R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 194.                                      evidence to be presented, and the opportunity to
     See, for example, Starr v. Gordon, [2010] O.J. No.          properly examine that evidence. This inquiry
     3223, 2010 ONSC 4167 (Rule 20 amendments should
     not be applied in family law proceedings) and Steine v.
                                                                 must consider the consequences of the motion in
     Steine, [2010] O.J. No. 3331, 2010 ONSC 4289 (judg-         the context of the litigation as a whole. Further,
     es may rely on the new tools available under Rule 20).
     See O. Reg. 16/15.
9                                                                10
     Rules of Civil Procedure, rr. 16(6.1) and (6.2); the             Hryniak, ibid., at para. 66.
     equivalent in the Rules of Civil Procedure is                    Hryniak, ibid., at paras. 52-53.
     r. 20.04(2.1); Hryniak, supra, note 2, at para. 44.              Hryniak, ibid., at paras. 56-58.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                                  Volume 32, Issue 1

the court must give a “good hard look” at the full                 The Supreme Court recognizes that removal of a
evidentiary record that is before it. The court may                child from parental custody constitutes a serious
even find that “there are triable issues on matters                interference with the psychological integrity of
not raised by the parties”.13                                      the parent:
In the family law context, summary judgment                             I have little doubt that state removal of a child
                                                                        from parental custody pursuant to the state’s
must be contemplated in the context of the                              parens patriae jurisdiction constitutes a serious
primary objective of the Rules themselves, which                        interference with the psychological integrity of
is to enable the courts to deal with cases justly,                      the parent. The parental interest in raising and
                                                                        caring for a child is, as La Forest J. held in B.
which includes ensuring that the procedure is fair                      (R.) v. Children’s Aid Society of Metropolitan
to all parties, saving time and expense, dealing                        Toronto, [1995] 1 S.C.R. 315 at para. 83, “an
with the case in ways that are appropriate to its                       individual interest of fundamental importance in
                                                                        our society.” Besides the obvious distress arising
importance and complexity, and giving                                   from the loss of companionship of the child,
appropriate court resources to the case while                           direct state interference with the parent-child
taking account of the need to give resources to                         relationship, through a procedure in which the
                                                                        relationship is subject to state inspection and
other cases. Courts are obliged to promote the                          review, is a gross intrusion into a private and
primary objective wherever possible.14                                  intimate sphere. Further, the parent is often
                                                                        stigmatized as “unfit” when relieved of custody.
Fair Process and Section 7                                              As an individual’s status as a parent is often
Throughout the test on a summary judgment                               fundamental to personal identity, the stigma and
                                                                        distress resulting from a loss of parental status is
motion, the court is asked to assess whether the                        a particularly serious consequence of the state’s
dispute can be fairly determined without a trial. It                    conduct.15
includes a balancing of expediency and process,                    Given these serious consequences, Chief Justice
preferring a motion where a trial is not required                  Lamer, added that “[t]he state may only relieve a
to ensure a “fair and just” result. In the child                   parent of custody when it is necessary to protect
protection context, there can be no fair and just                  the best interests of the child, provided that there
result if a parent’s s. 7 Charter rights are                       is a fair procedure for making this
infringed.                                                         determination”.16
Moreover, the respondent parents in child                          Lessons from Motherisk Commis-
protection litigation are not the only participants                sion Report
whose s. 7 rights deserve protection. Children are                 We know that we have failed families in the past,
at the centre of these cases. They are our most                    and that we should not be complacent in
vulnerable citizens, and they deserve full                         assuming that the s. 7 rights of parents and
participation and fair procedure in any litigation                 children will be properly safeguarded in child
affecting their long-term family bonds and
personal identities.                                               15
                                                                        New Brunswick (Minister of Health and Community
                                                                        Services) v. G. (J.), [1999] S.C.J. No. 47, [1999] 3
                                                                        S.C.R. 46 at paras. 60-61 [“New Brunswick”]. See also
                                                                        Blencoe v. British Columbia (Human Rights Commis-
     Isaac Estate v. Matuszynska, [2016] O.J. No. 4886,                 sion), [2000] S.C.J. No. 43, 2000 SCC 44 at para. 86,
     2016 ONSC 3617 at para. 31.                                        and R. v. Charles, [2008] S.J. No. 351, 2008 SKQB
     Rules 2(2)-(4). See Serafini v. Serafini, [2015] O.J. No.          206 at para. 7.
     2723, 2015 ONSC 3391 at para. 11.                                  New Brunswick, ibid., at para. 70.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                                Volume 32, Issue 1

protection litigation. Most recently in Ontario, the                 strengthen Charter rights without comprising
report of the Motherisk Commission serves as a                       children’s safety.
tragic example of the consequences of this                           Lesson 2: Disparity in litigation resources
failure. The Commission identified systemic
                                                                     The Motherisk Commission commented on the
failures of the legal system to ensure that families
                                                                     significant disparity in resources between
have proper procedural protections when
                                                                     publicly funded children’s aid societies and
litigating against the Children’s Aid Society and
                                                                     parents living in poverty, funding their litigation
described the manner in which such failures
                                                                     on legal aid certificates. Limited funding is
resulted in miscarriages of justice.
                                                                     available for counsel defending summary
Counsel and judges called upon to assess the                         judgment motions or seeking to dispute expert
adequacy of the summary judgment process in                          opinions, let alone pursuing Charter challenges.
child protection cases should keep the following                     The Motherisk Commission found few cases in
lessons from the Motherisk experience in mind:                       which parents obtained their own testing to refute
Lesson 1: Charter challenges are rare                                Motherisk results.20 Parents likely could not
The Motherisk Commission found that “the                             afford additional testing, nor formal interpretation
                                                                     of hair test results. Similar financial restraints
Charter is rarely invoked in child protection
                                                                     make it prohibitive for lawyers to cross-examine
cases”.17 Counsel are reluctant to bring Charter
                                                                     experts out of court. This resource disparity is
challenges because of the pressure to avoid any
                                                                     extremely significant on a summary judgment
added delay in permanency planning for children,
                                                                     motion, where it is not sufficient for parents to
and “fear that the court may view them as
                                                                     “baldly deny” the allegations against them.
focussing on the rights of the parents as opposed
                                                                     Moreover, representing vulnerable clientele often
to the safety of the children”.18 Counsel are often
                                                                     requires lawyers to spend time on non-legal
funded by Legal Aid, without resources to pursue
                                                                     support, or requires more time reviewing
Charter challenges. In contrast with the criminal
                                                                     documents and ensuring that clients understand
context, where evidence obtained in breach of
                                                                     the process and the case to be met.21
Charter rights can be excluded, or proceedings
can be stayed, appropriate remedies in child                         Lesson 3: Vulnerable population
protection cases are less clear, given the                           The Motherisk Commission describes families
importance of ensuring that children are safe.19                     affected by hair strand testing as poor, and often
Requiring a trial of a case instead of a motion,                     affected by physical or mental health issues.22
however, is a clear way to safeguard if not                          Child protection disproportionately affects
                                                                     women, who are very often the primary
                                                                     caregivers of children. The “vast majority” of
     The Honourable Judith C. Beaman, Harmful Impacts: The           individuals tested were mothers,23 which is to be
     Reliance on Hair Testing in Child Protection, Report of the     expected given that child protection litigation is
     Motherisk Commission (Toronto, 26 February 2018),
     online:  at 38.
                                                                     often centered on the relationship between a
     Ibid., at 38.
19                                                                   20
     For some of the ways the Charter intersects with child               Beaman, supra, note 17, at 61.
     protection proceedings, see D.A. Rollie Thompson,                    Ibid., at 114.
     “The Cheshire Cat, or Just his Smile? Evidence Law in                Ibid., at 55.
     Child Protection” (2003) 21 Can. Fam. L.Q. 319.                      Ibid., at 45.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                               Volume 32, Issue 1

mother and her child. The Motherisk Commission                      As counsel, we can take steps to ensure that the
Report also discusses the unique experiences of                     litigation system corrects this imbalance rather
racialized and indigenous families in the child                     than entrenching it.
protection system. A disproportionately large                       Lesson 4: Credibility biases and improper
number (14.9 per cent) of the cases reviewed by                     weighing of the evidence
the Motherisk Commission involved indigenous
                                                                    The Motherisk experience should make us very
families.24 The Child, Youth and Family Services
                                                                    reluctant to encourage courts to assess credibility
Act, 2017, now requires that the system address
                                                                    in child protection matters without the benefit of
systemic racism and honour the unique
                                                                    cross-examination. Credibility issues were central
experience of First Nations, Inuit, and Metis
                                                                    to the procedural failures caused by overreliance
families in the child welfare system.25
                                                                    on Motherisk hair strand testing. When pitted
The Commission found that bodily samples                            against Society workers or scientific “experts”
were routinely taken from vulnerable                                parents’ evidence was not believed. We should be
individuals without informed consent. In fact,                      especially cautions about assessing credibility
they did not find “a single reference in which a                    under a legislative framework that requires us to
CAS worker either advised parents that they                         address systemic racism, given the risk that
did not have to provide a hair sample or told                       negative biases against racialized people may
them that they had the right to seek legal advice                   influence such assessments.
before being tested”.26
                                                                    As stated by the Commission, “parents and others
There is an enormous imbalance of power                             who disputed their test results were simply not
between children’s aid societies and parents.27                     believed… With the influence of the assurances
The Society is a well-funded state agency that is                   of Laboratory staff and the stature of the
empowered to enter our homes and remove our                         Laboratory through its location in a world-
children from our care. In my own practice, I                       renowned hospital, the court and CASs gave little
have found that even parents who are relatively                     credence to caregivers’ assertions that test results
wealthy or educated believe that they must follow                   were incorrect”.29 Parents who did not accept the
the direction of a children’s aid worker without                    test results were seen by Societies and courts as
question, even when there is no application                         “lacking in credibility” or lacking “the judgment
before the court. This imbalance of power is only                   and personal insight necessary for good
made worse by the added vulnerabilities of the                      parenting”.30
parents who are often involved in this system.28
                                                                    These hair strand tests were also given
                                                                    disproportionate weight by Societies and the
     Ibid., at 55.
     Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2017, S.O.
                                                                    courts, which should cause us to be very careful
     2017, c. 14, Schedule 1, preamble.                             in applying the expanded power to weigh
     Beaman, supra, note 17, at 61.                                 evidence on a summary judgment motion. The
     Ibid., at 121.
     In their recent submissions to the Family Law Rules
     Committee, the Ontario Association of Child Protec-
     tion Lawyers thoughtfully described the practical ways              Amendments to the Family Law Rules that apply in
     that such vulnerabilities affect parents’ ability to mean-          child protection proceedings, April 3, 2018].
     ingfully participate in litigation. [Submissions of On-             Beaman, supra, note 17, at 62.
     tario Association of Child Protection Lawyers re                    Ibid.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                            Volume 32, Issue 1

Motherisk Commission Report gave the                             for properly testing credibility, and we should be
following example:                                               extremely cautious of assessing credibility
      For example, in one case, the society’s materials          without cross-examination of Society workers in
      described a parent as having excellent parenting           a system that has been observed to unfairly
      skills and reported that she consistently attended
                                                                 discredit parents in favour of institutional
      for access. Notwithstanding this encouraging
      evidence, when a positive Motherisk test                   litigants and flawed “science”.
      appeared to show low levels of cocaine and
      marijuana, the court made the child a Crown                The Motherisk Commission made specific
      ward, without access, after a summary judgment             recommendations about summary judgment
      hearing.31                                                 motions because of the problems they observed.
Reconciling Summary Judgment                                     Specifically, the Commission “saw a troubling
and Fair Process                                                 tendency for the court to make orders on these
                                                                 motions based on evidence that would not be
How do we reconcile permanently removing a
                                                                 admissible at trial”.32 The report further notes that
person’s child from her care without giving her a
                                                                 although the amendments to the Family Law
right to cross-examination? The expansion of
                                                                 Rules make it possible to hear oral evidence and
summary judgment in the civil context has
                                                                 conduct cross-examination within the summary
permeated child protection litigation, resulting in
                                                                 judgment process, such cross-examination is not
a system in which the same parent may have a
                                                                 available as of right.33
right to trial when charged with theft, but does
not have that right when defending her                           Courts are applying the summary judgment test
relationship with her children.                                  with full knowledge of the miscarriages of justice
                                                                 that have been revealed by the Motherisk
A trial not only offers the best tools at our
                                                                 Commission and by the 2008 Report of the
disposal for properly testing evidence and
                                                                 Inquiry into Pediatric Forensic Pathology in
revealing an accurate understanding of a child’s
                                                                 Ontario, led by Commissioner Stephen Goudge,34
experience, it also allows parents to be heard. A
                                                                 which came before it. Some, such as the Ontario
trial, unlike a motion, gives parents a literal voice
                                                                 Association of Child Protection Lawyers, have
in the process. This is especially significant
                                                                 understandably advocated for a right to a trial in
where a parent lacks English language skills,
                                                                 cases where the Society seeks to place a child in
literacy skills, or cognitive or other capacity to
                                                                 extended society care.35 The Motherisk
navigate a process based solely on written words.
                                                                 Commission did not go that far, but did make the
A document-heavy process also favours the
                                                                 following recommendations to the Family Rules
Society as the more powerful and better funded
institutional litigant. Societies can and do
produce voluminous affidavit evidence in support
of summary judgment motions, which are                           32
                                                                      Ibid., at 112.
difficult for many parents to read and understand,                    Ibid.
                                                                      See The Honourable Stephen T. Goudge, Inquiry into
let alone properly review and refute with the                         Pediatric Forensic Pathology in Ontario: Report (To-
funding available through Legal Aid. Cross-                           ronto: Ministry of the Attorney General, 2008).
examination, while imperfect, is also our method                      Submissions of Ontario Association of Child Protec-
                                                                      tion Lawyers re Amendments to the Family Law Rules
                                                                      that apply in child protection proceedings, April 3,
     Ibid., at 63.                                                    2018.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                       Volume 32, Issue 1

Committee regarding amendments to the Family               Proceed with caution
Law Rules:36                                               Courts have fairly wide discretion as to whether
     a) permit only evidence that would be                 or not to use the expanded powers available
        admissible at trial, and in particular, to         under the new summary judgment framework. If
        prohibit hearsay evidence that does not            it is clear that there is no genuine issue for trial
        meet the common law tests for                      without resorting to the expanded powers, then
        admissibility;                                     the court must make a final order. However, even
     b) require all expert evidence tendered at a          at the first stage of that analysis, proportionality
        summary judgment motion to comply                  forms part of the test. Where the stakes are as
        with the Rule regarding experts and                high as those in many child protection cases,
        expert reports (as amended by these                proportionality arguments will often favour more
        Recommendations);                                  thorough litigation processes. At the second
     c) require the court to conduct a voir dire           stage, courts have discretion as to whether to
        before admitting any expert evidence; and          weigh evidence, evaluate credibility, or draw
     d) permit deviation from these requirements           inferences, and there is existing jurisprudence
        only where the parent expressly                    that is helpful in arguing that such discretion
        acknowledges to the court that the                 should be declined in favour of a trial for cases
        findings of the expert are correct, and the        involving permanent removal without access.
        court is satisfied that the parent                 Courts are aware that although summary
        adequately understands the expert opinion          judgments are permitted under Rule 16 (except in
        and the consequences of such an                    divorce claims), courts should use such motions
        acknowledgement.                                   with caution. Justice Rosenberg of the Court of
We can expect that summary judgment is                     the Appeal stated the matter eloquently
probably here to stay in child protection. All of              ... I am mindful of the huge caseload facing the
us, including Society counsel, should be mindful               trial courts of this province in respect of child
                                                               protection matters. Thus, nothing said here
of how we might ensure that summary judgment                   should be taken as an attempt to limit the courts’
is a truly fair and balanced process, and one that             attempts to expedite these difficult cases in
protects the Charter rights of the families                    appropriate circumstances. However, I adopt the
                                                               comments of Himel J. in F.B. v. S.G., supra. In
involved.                                                      that case, Justice Himel outlined the history of
                                                               the use of summary judgment in child protection
Tools for Fair(er) Process in Sum-                             motions culminating in the enactment of Rule 16
mary Judgment                                                  of the Family Court Rules. I agree with her that
                                                               this jurisdiction must be exercised with caution.
In the following section we have provided exam-                As Himel J. wrote at para. 23, “Considering the
ples of common procedural issues on summary                    jurisprudence both before and since the
judgment motions that highlight tools at our dis-              enactment of Rule 16, it is clear that it remains
                                                               appropriate that summary judgment jurisdiction
posal to advocate for more procedural fairness for             be exercised cautiously since that is consistent
families litigating against children’s aid societies           with the principles of justice and the best
and thereby correct, to some extent, the imbal-                interests of children.” Further, Himel J. wrote at
                                                               para. 40: “Effective parental participation at the
ance of power that favours Societies.                          child protection hearing is essential to determine
                                                               the best interests of the child in circumstances
     Beaman, supra, note 17, at 113.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                                 Volume 32, Issue 1

     where the parent seeks to maintain custody of                       Protection contexts was no longer an
     the child”.37                                                       extraordinary remedy limited to only the
                                                                         “clearest of cases.” … The amendments to Rule
One of the things the Court of Appeal wanted to                          16 and the Hryniak decision reinforce this point.
see was some certainty that parents would be able                        The traditional trial is no longer the default
                                                                         procedure in Family Law and Child Protection
to participate meaningfully in the process. Here,
                                                                         proceedings. The summary judgment route has
the appeal centered on procedural complaints                             been transformed from a means of weeding out
about the judge and the legal counsel they                               clearly unmeritorious claims and defences to a
                                                                         significant and legitimate alternative model of
received, both regarding a written agreement
between the parents and the Society. The motion
                                                                         Notwithstanding the foregoing comments, the
judge had framed the issue in terms of whether                           importance of the issues to be decided in a case
the agreement that the parents would be bound by                         is one of the major factors to be considered in
the recommendations of a parenting assessment                            carrying out the proportionality analysis and
                                                                         deciding on the adjudication process and
was enforceable. The Court of Appeal held that                           procedures that are appropriate to the case in
the main issue was whether the application for                           question. … [W]hen the relief requested has a
Crown wardship without access raised any triable                         highly intrusive impact on the parent-child
                                                                         relationship, it is appropriate for the court
issues. The trial judge deprived the parents “of                         dealing with a summary judgment motion to
their right to effective to effective                                    proceed with caution (B. (F.) v. G. (S.), [2001]
participation”.38 Unrepresented clients require an                       O.J. No. 1586 (Ont. S.C.J.); Children’s Aid
                                                                         Society of Halton (Region) v. A. (K.L.);
even greater degree of caution.39 Courts,                                Children’s Aid Society of Toronto v. P. (C.)).41
meanwhile, have a duty to self-represented
                                                                    Test admissibility and conclusions of expert
litigants to make sure they have every
opportunity to advance their case and get their
evidence into the record.40                                         The Motherisk Commission heard from judges
                                                                    that processes relying on affidavit evidence,
Counsel should consider whether parents have                        including summary judgment motions, “creates
the ability to meaningfully participate in the                      the potential to admit untested evidence too
process in an individualized and contextual way,                    easily”.42 There are rules of evidence governing
given that we know parents involved in the child                    the admissibility of expert evidence, and at trial
protection system often face systemic barriers to                   such admissibility is tested in a voir dire.43 The
such participation.                                                 Commission recommends that the Family Law
More recently, in Children’s Aid Society of                         Rules require a voir dire before admitting an
Hamilton v. J.M. and C.W., the court commented                      expert report. Counsel should avoid allowing any
on the use of summary judgment motions in child                     expert evidence to be submitted on consent by
protection proceedings:                                             Societies and should take steps to ensure that
     The case-law decided prior to Hryniak held that                such evidence would be admissible at trial.
     summary judgment in the Family Law and Child
                                                                         Children’s Aid Society of Hamilton v. J.M. and C.W.,
     Children’s Aid Society of Halton Region v. K.L.A.,                  [2017] O.J. No. 5126, 2017 ONSC 5869 at paras. 69-
     [2006] O.J. No. 3958 at para. 25, 2006 CanLII 33538.                70.
38                                                                  42
     Ibid., at para. 26.                                                 Beaman, supra, note 17, at 102.
39                                                                  43
     Children’s Aid Society of Toronto v. P.M., [2002] O.J.              See D.A. Rollie Thompson, “The Ten Evidence ‘Rules’
     No. 2321 (C.J.).                                                    That Every Family Law Lawyer Needs to Know”
     Ibid., at para. 8.                                                  (2016) 35 Can. Fam. L.Q. 285 at 287-92.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                 Volume 32, Issue 1

For example, in Durham Children’s Aid Society v.          and emotional harm. Justice Shelston held,
L.(J.),44 the court found that the parents                however, that disposition remained a genuine
minimized or avoided accepting any blame for              issue for trial. There was evidence that the mother
their shortcomings or failures, and the mother            was making efforts to remedy the shortcomings
downplayed her mental health problems. There              the Society had identified and was attending
was also evidence that the parents did not follow         counselling and parenting courses. She was
through on (or perhaps understand) the help they          willing to consent to a supervision order.
were offered regarding feeding. The court granted         Significantly, she had also raised issues with
summary judgment on the issue of a continuing             respect to the parenting capacity assessment,
need for protection. As to disposition, however,          arguing it was improper for the assessor to draw
the court found that there was a genuine issue for        “conclusions where the psychometric tests result
trial, particularly in light of “the importance and       indicates unscorable responses and
finality of a Crown Wardship order”.45 As Justice         underreporting on the validity of the protocol”
Timms noted, there was a “very real connection            and a lack of corroboration between “his direct
between the determination of disputed facts and           observations” and the personality conclusions
the outcome of the trial”, particularly with respect      included in the report.48 Finally, the fact that the
to the Parenting Capacity Assessment report,              trial was scheduled to occur within a month’s
which was at odds with a letter from the mother’s         time allowed the court to dispense with the
psychiatrist. The opinions of the expert in that          concern that the child had been in care past the
report were “fundamental to the Society’s                 allowable time limits.
position” and therefore merit careful examination         Introduce oral evidence or require focused
by the court.46                                           hearings
In Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa of Ottawa v.          Where a court may not be prepared to dismiss a
S. (S.),47 a parenting capacity assessment was also       motion for summary judgment in its entirety in
at issue. Largely as a result of the abusive              favour of ordering a trial, counsel should
relationship the mother had with the father, the          emphasize the court’s discretion to allow oral
28-month-old child was found to be at risk of             evidence and cross-examination within the
physical and emotional harm. At the time of the           summary judgment motion, and the availability
trial, the child was placed with the paternal uncle,      of focused or streamlined hearings on more
who had adopted the father’s three older children         limited issues under Rule 1 of the Family Law
after they were made Crown wards. Summary                 Rules. Courts have used these tools in order to
judgment was granted regarding the on-going               strengthen procedural fairness in deciding child
need of protection. Besides other general                 protection cases. Even where a finding in need of
concerns about the mother’s parenting abilities,          protection may be a foregone conclusion, for
the pattern of breakup and reconciliation and the         example, a trial may be required on the issues of
mother’s admission that she and the father were           disposition, or access.
trying to reconcile put the child at risk of physical
     [2017] O.J. No. 330, 2016 ONSC 7947.
     Ibid., at para. 50.
     Ibid., at para. 47.
47                                                        48
     [2016] O.J. No. 1353, 2016 ONSC 1747.                     Ibid., at paras. 60-61.

Ontario Family Law Reporter                                                                             Volume 32, Issue 1

In Children’s Aid Society of Toronto v. G. (A.),49                 was certain to succeed and felt that she needed to
summary judgment was granted for Crown                             learn how the mother had been doing in the two
wardship of three children, but further evidence                   months between the motion and the release of her
was required on the issue of access. Justice                       reasons. The updated situation of the mother, in
Zisman noted that, according to the doctrine in                    short, was a material fact that would affect the
Hryniak, when there are concerns about                             disposition.53 In keeping with the principles of
credibility or evidence stands in need of                          proportionality, timeliness, and affordability,
clarification, oral evidence may need to be called                 Justice Jones determined that a mini trial (as
on the motion itself. Subrules 16(6.1) and (6.2) of                circumscribed by Hryniak) would allow the court
the Rules grant these expanded fact-finding                        to hear from the mother and other witnesses and
powers. In line with the stress on proportionality                 determine whether a full trial would be
found in Hryniak, Justice Zisman noted that these                  necessary.54
expanded powers may result in the conclusion                       In Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa v. C.I.,55
that a trial is still required; thus, relying on                   Justice Mackinnon determined the issue of
subrules 2 and 1(7.2), Justice Zisman determined                   Crown wardship for two children (aged 13 and 20
that a focused trial with tight limits on evidence                 months) in a process ordered on consent by
and the time for cross-examination, was the                        Justice Shelston two months earlier. There was a
“most appropriate process to fairly, justly and                    timetable for affidavits; the Society was required
expediently determine if the mother should be                      to deliver its case by affidavit evidence; the
granted access to the children.50                                  mother also delivered affidavit evidence but had
In Children’s Aid Society of Toronto v. L.S.,51 the                to provide oral testimony as well; and the expert
court ordered a mini trial where there was a                       who authored the Family Court Clinic
motion for Crown wardship without access for a                     Assessment was required to provide oral
two-year-old child. The mother had seemingly                       testimony and be subject to cross-examination.56
made great strides from her earlier lifestyle,                     Justice Mackinnon determined that there was no
which had been unstable and involved a long                        genuine issue for trial regarding a protection
history of drug addition. Since February 2015,                     finding or a disposition of Crown wardship: the
she had begun treatment, terminated an abusive                     older child was at risk of emotional harm and the
relationship, and found stable housing. Her                        younger child was at risk of physical harm. The
access visits with her child had gone well and                     mother, who had a diagnosis of “PTSD with
demonstrated “more than adequate parenting” to                     some element of psychotic features” from each of
her child.52 Justice Jones found herself unable to                 her previous psychiatrists,57 lacked insight into
conclude that there was no genuine issue                           her problems, exhibited a pattern of not adhering
requiring a trial or that the Society’s application                to a treatment plan, and was unco-operative with
                                                                   the Society. On the matter of access, the mother
     [2015] O.J. No. 3142, 2015 ONCJ 331, rev’d in part,
     [2015] O.J. No. 5633, 2015 ONSC 6638.
     Ibid., at para. 146. On appeal (2015 ONSC 6638), Jus-
     tice Horkins upheld the description of the two-step test           Ibid., at paras. 71-74.
     for access, but reversed on the disposition, holding that          Ibid., at para. 75.
     there should be no order for access.                               [2016] O.J. No. 4120, 2016 ONSC 4792.
51                                                                 56
     [2015] O.J. No. 5017, 2015 ONCJ 527.                               Ibid., at para. 2.
52                                                                 57
     Ibid., at para. 66.                                                Ibid., at para. 10.

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