Ontario Civil


Family Law

Costs

In family law proceedings generally

Woman awarded costs after success on support issue and divided success on property

Parties were in common-law relationship and had two children. Parties initially lived in property man owned and then purchased rural property with woman contributing $20,000 to purchase price and man contributing $10,000. Man sold property he owned and contributed $113,888 of proceeds to pay for renovations. Man transferred his interest in property to woman in order to facilitate future severance of property. After parties separated, woman was ordered to transfer title of residential lot to man. Motion judge granted man’s motion for division of equity in property according to parties’ respective contributions and partially granting woman’s motion for equal division of property and child support. Parties made submissions on costs. Man was to pay costs of $32,000 including $2,000 for disbursements, plus HST, and $2,500 for pre-judgment interest. Woman made two offers to settle, and man made one offer, that were compliant with Family Law Rules. Woman was wholly successful on issue of parties’ qualifying incomes for child support, but there was divided success on property issues. Amount awarded to woman on property issues was substantially greater than what man proposed. Full recovery costs sanction applied to woman’s offer regarding child support issues. Taking into account woman’s success on child support issue and her greater success on property issues than man, fair and reasonable award for time spent by her lawyer was $30,000. It would be fair and reasonable to award woman pre-judgment interest of $2,500 relating to property and support issues.

Barnett v. Lindsay (2017), 2017 CarswellOnt 7820, 2017 ONSC 3075, D.A. Jarvis J. (Ont. S.C.J.); additional reasons (2016), 2016 CarswellOnt 12258, 2016 ONSC 3087, D.A. Jarvis J. (Ont. S.C.J.).

 


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