Once the Office of the Children’s Lawyer (OCL) gets involved in a case, clinical investigators prepare a written report, which is presented by the Children’s Lawyer for the Court’s benefit. The question then becomes, how much weight does a Court put on such reports? Courts generally put significant weight on them as they are independent third-party accounts of the child’s best interest. However, a Court is not legally bound to follow recommendations in the report, particularly where the Court finds the OCL’s recommendations are not supported by the evidence at hand. The ultimate weight given to the OCL’s reports depends on a highly qualitative analysis of their accuracy and reliability.
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About the author
Russell Alexander is the founder of Russell Alexander Collaborative Family Lawyers and is the firm’s senior partner. At Russell Alexander, our focus is exclusively family law, offering pre-separation legal advice and assisting clients with family related issues, including: custody and access, separation agreements, child and spousal support, division of family property, paternity disputes, and enforcement of court orders. We have locations in Toronto, Markham, Whitby (Brooklin), Oshawa, Concord, Lindsay, and Peterborough.
For more information, visit our website, or you can call us at: 905-655-6335.