How do I win my BC Supreme Court Family Trial? This key question in answered by Shanna Gill, our hardworking paralegal at our Surrey BC office.
A question you must ask yourself if you are in a legal family battle is “How do I win my BC Supreme Court Family Trial?” This is a crucial question to ask yourself as it pertains to the rest of your life. Your win in a family litigation proceeding is a determination of what the rest of your life may look like so of course this is not something you will take lightly and nor should you. Here at MacLean Law, we pride ourselves with a highly successful team of legal professionals. The legal team you have by your side will have a huge impact on the results you get at your Supreme Court family trial. Our trial lawyers and family law support team understand the complexity of family law matters. We have several offices across British Columbia as well as in Calgary and Toronto.
Vancouver – How Do I Win My BC Supreme Court Family Trial? 1 877 602 9900.
Tip # 1 Don’t Get Struck: There are several rules to follow in order for your trial to proceed as planned and failure to comply with all of the rules means your trial will be “struck off the list.” What does this mean? Simply put, your trial can get cancelled if you do not follow each and every rule and deadline as outlined in the Court Rules (which we will elaborate on shortly).
Let us explain and break this down for you in a simplified way:
Tip #2 Let’s say your matter has passed the “interim” stages and is ready to be scheduled for trial. What’s next? It’s time to book a trial. How so?
- Click here: https://www.bccourts.ca/supreme_court/
- Once you’ve reached the Supreme Court website, on the left side of the page, click “scheduling.” On that page, you will choose the location of YOUR court registry (which you can also find on any of your pleadings, such as the Notice of Family Claim).
- Let’s just say for example, your court registry is Vancouver. Then you will scroll down the page to where it says “Trails – Family.”
- Then you will click on whichever link applies to your trial. For example, if your trial is 5 days long, you will select “4-5 Day Family Trials.”
- Once you click the above, a PDF will open up with all of the Court’s available dates for your 5-day trial.
- Easy! Now you choose the date you and the other party have agreed to (whether that is through a lawyer or amongst yourselves) and you will call the court registry (located on the website) and book your desired trial date.
- Now that you have booked your trial, let’s get down to the details. Please refer to the Supreme Court Family Rules or click this link https://www.canlii.org/ which sets out the rules as mentioned above. Remember, these are crucial to carefully follow through as you don’t want your trial to be “struck off the list.”
- Once the trial is booked, you will have a maximum of 30 days to pay the booking fee for your trial. This ensures your trial dates are secured in place for YOUR matter.
- Next, you will prepare a Notice of Trial, please click here for the form: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/. Once this form is complete, you will file it with the court and then serve a filed copy on the other party.
- Now you have to do 2 things. First, you have to prepare a Trial Brief. Second, you have to attend a Trial Management Conference. Let’s further break this down together.
- A Trial Brief has to be prepared 7 days BEFORE the date set for the Trial Management Conference. If you don’t do this 7 days before, your Trial Brief will be rejected and now you have a problem. What’s the problem? Again, a high chance that your Trial Management Conference and your trial may get “struck off the list.” We definitely don’t want this to happen to you so please follow the deadlines accordingly.
Surrey – How Do I Win My BC Supreme Court Family Trial? 1 877 602 9900.
Tip # 3: Don’t forget to serve the filed Trial Brief on the other party. These are to be exchanged between both parties. This means you will see their position on the outstanding issues and vice versa.
A Trial Management Conference is where you, your ex or your lawyers and a Judge of the Supreme Court have a “meeting” to determine whether your matter is ready to proceed to trial and if the Judge needs to make any “procedural’ orders, they will do so at this time. Oh, and let’s not forget, how do we book the Trial Management Conference? Please click this link https://www.bccourts.ca/supreme_court/scheduling/ and scroll down the page and select “Trial Management Conference Dates.” These are all of the available dates the Court is able to provide you which are updated regularly.
Tip # 4: A Trial Management Conference has to happen 28 days before the date of your Trial. Failure to comply with this deadline, again, means what? You guessed it! Your trial has a high chance of being “struck off the list.” There are ways to deal with “forgetting” deadlines, however, be mindful that the Courts do not like their time wasted and we shouldn’t be doing that either as it’s important to use the Courts time efficiently and effectively. The same way you have been waiting for these Court dates, others are also right behind you waiting in line. We will post another blog on the “hiccups” and ways around it.
Alright so now that the above steps are out of the way, you will have to prepare an updated Financial Statement. If your Financial Statement does not have any “significant changes” such as your income, assets and debts are looking about right and your previous Financial Statement was sworn and filed not a very long time ago, then you may be able to take a rain cheque on this one! If there are “significant changes” then you will have to prepare the Financial Statement found here https://www2.gov.bc.ca/, swear it with a lawyer or a notary, file it with the court and serve the same on the opposing party AT LEAST 28 days before the date of your trial.
Tip #5: To avoid being fined by the Court at a later time, please file this in accordance with the deadline. It’s an important step especially in matters where child support and spousal support are at stake. Whether it’s you RECEIVING or PROVIDING any kind of support, the Financial Statement shows the Court a clear picture of each parties “financial position” in order to determine quantum of such support.
Tip #6: This statement is also important in family property disputes as it provides the Court with a complete outline of who has what assets and debts in order to determine equal or unequal division of such assets and debts.
Now that your reaching closer to your trial date, within a month away, you have to file with the court and serve a copy of the filed TRIAL RECORD on the other party which is found here https://www2.gov.bc.ca/. The Trial Record has an index and what does that mean? This means you will have to prepare binders. Please refer to the Supreme Court Family Rules for more details on the record and/or call our office at 604-602-9000 so that we can represent and assist you.
Tip #7: This has to be done AT LEAST 14 days BEFORE and not more than 28 days BEFORE the date of your trial. Also, the onus is on the person who booked and filed the Notice of Trial (see above). So, if you’re reading this and YOU filed the Notice of Trial, please click the link above, complete and file this with the Court ASAP if you’re in the time frames noted above. Next is your Trial Certificate, a simple form found here https://www2.gov.bc.ca/. Please complete this and file it with the Court AT LEAST 14 days BEFORE and not more than 28 days BEFORE the date of your trial.
Tip #8: It’s a good idea to file the Trial Record and Trial Certificate at the same time so you don’t forget these at a later point!
Tip #9: Document and Authorities Books. Now get ready to prepare your Book of Documents. These are all your binders consisting of all YOUR evidence to support YOUR position at trial. The Book of Documents contains everything listed on a form called a List of Documents. The List of Documents is exchanged between both parties much earlier than the trial steps. We will also discuss all about the List of Documents in another blog. Prepare your Book of Authorities, which can be put into binders or bound. This consists of all of the legislation and case law you intend to rely on for your trial to support your case.
Tip #10 You will also prepare an “Opening Statement” for the first day of your trial and a “Closing Statement” for the last day of your trial. This is a short summary of your case and you may want to highlight what you are seeking and why it is fair you should get what you asked for in your family claim, together with list of witnesses and maybe some short case law that support your position.
Please be mindful that these are only the major deadlines to NOT FORGET for your trial. However, there are various other materials which you can and/or will need to submit to the Court such as, Will-Say Statements, Subpoena’s, Notice to Produce, etc. Here at MacLean Law, we will ensure that anything required for your trial is submitted and provided to the Court in accordance with the Court Rules.
Trial preparation and winning a BC Family Trial is tricky, requires an expert’s knowledge and experience, needs a strategy, a full understanding of the Law, thorough knowledge of the unique facts of the case at hand, how to examine witnesses in trial and so forth. We highly recommend you hire a lawyer and speak to one of our top tier lawyers at MacLean Law to guide and assist you through the entire process.
MacLean Law’s Multi-Award Winning Family Lawyers Can Help 1 877 602 9900.
The first thing you should do when you ask: How do I win my BC Supreme Court Family Trial? is to hire a top family lawyer who has successfully handled cases like yours before. We hope these tips have answered your question of: How do I win my BC Supreme Court Family Trial?
The aforesaid information does not constitute legal advice and we recommend calling our office at 604-602-9000 and arrange a consultation with our award winning family lawyers so that you can obtain legal advice which shall be specific to your unique situation. Let us help you WIN your Supreme Court family trial.