Preparing for Family Court – Reliable Web Resources for Self-Represented Litigants

According to Justice Bonkalo’s Family Legal Services Review Report (December 2016), over 57% of Ontarians did not have legal representation in family court in 2014/15. The Final Report of the National Self-Represented Litigants Project (pdf) also estimates that 60% of all litigants appearing in family courts in North America are representing themselves.  

As the number of self-represented family law litigants grows, so do the number of websites, articles and guides aimed at helping those navigating the court process on their own. This proliferation of self-help sources can make finding good, reliable information difficult. Here are three useful guides from reputable sources:

Steps in a Family Law Case
– CLEO (Community Legal Education Ontario)

Clear guidance on the court process for family litigants in flow-chart form.

A Guide to Process for Family Cases at the Superior Court of Justice (pdf)
– Ontario Superior Court of Justice

This guide provides basic but thorough legal information on the steps and rules in a family law case at the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, including Family Court.

Coping with the Courtroom: Essential Information and Tips for SRLs (pdf)
– The National Self-Represented Litigants Project

A practical primer on what to expect when representing yourself in court, and how to be prepared both procedurally and mentally.