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“These apps raise a set of legal questions because these are Canadian courts ordering people to use American apps,” explains Bromwich, who is the Director of the Graduate Diploma in Conflict Resolution program. “We don’t know how it’s going and whether it’s being tracked. It’s a bit of a black box in terms of what’s in them. And we don’t know how the use of these apps is affecting levels of conflict between co-parents, or impacting the best interests of children.”

Bromwich says the apps are being used because of a confluence of events: online technology, including AI, has made it possible for tech solutions to be proffered to a growing variety of legal problems, and, the majority of people in family law cases simply can’t afford lawyers, so are now unrepresented in Court. Parties are voluntarily using these apps, and, sometimes the Courts are turning to requiring parties to use apps to help them manage ongoing custody issues...

 



Will changes to the Divorce Act actually make a difference for children?


The big headline from C-78 is about a change of language – swapping out words such as “custody” and “access” in favour of “parenting orders” and “parenting time.” The language around custody “was so adversarial in the past, and really fomented a lot of conflict between parents,” Boyd said. Lawyer and instructor at Carleton University Rebecca Bromwich said it’s too soon to know exactly what a change of language will mean in courtrooms and playrooms across the country. “Will changing the legislative language immediately change everything? No, but I can hope it will be part of a cultural paradigm shift away from those high conflict divorces, which are not good for anyone,” Bromwich said...


 

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