Vancouver Child Custody Parenting COVID 19 cases are beginning to show up frequently. A new decision from Mr. Justice Riley of the BC Supreme Court establishes a nice summary for parents wondering what to do with Vancouver Child Custody Parenting COVID 19 child parenting disputes. MacLean Law lawyers help parents take a child-focused approach. Remember, experts, say the greatest single predictor for compromised development in children is the presence of prolonged post-separation parental conflict. MacLean Law has won “Top Vancouver family lawyers” for the past 5 years in a row.
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“In C.G.R. v J.L.R, 2020 BCSC 790 at para. 20, Riley J, of the B.C. Supreme court states:
“I will deal first with the COVID-19 concerns raised by Ms. R. There have been a number of recent cases in which courts in both British Columbia and Ontario have discussed the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on parenting arrangements. See, for example, J.W. v. C.H., 2020 BCPC 52; N.J.B. v. S.F., 2020 BCPC 53, and Ribeiro v. Wright, 2020 ONSC 1829. I will not quote directly from the cases but the following principles are basically my synthesis of points made in recent case law discussing COVID-19.
- First, COVID-19 concerns should not be used as a justification for denying parenting time under an existing parenting order absent some specific concern that the health of the child or someone else in the child’s household is at risk.
- Second, absent some specific concern, the mere fact that a child has to go from one household to another during the COVID-19 era is not a basis for refusing to comply with or even applying to vary an existing parenting order.
- Third, each parent is expected to show some flexibility by making every effort to work with the other parent and to comply with recommendations of public health officials regarding things such as self-isolation, physical distancing, and proper hygiene.
- Fourth, case-specific evidence that a particular parent is not adhering to the recommendations of public health officials regarding COVID-19 may be a basis for variation of an existing parenting order.
- Fifth and finally – and this is really my synthesis of the law rather than a point explicitly made in any of the cases – there may be situations where a child or a member of one parent’s household is subject to heightened risks associated with COVID-19, and in such circumstances, the court must look for an arrangement that minimizes those risks to the greatest extent possible in a manner consistent with the best interests of the child.”