Judicial Interviews of Children in Canada’s Family Courts: Growing Acceptance but Still Controversial

Judicial Interviews of Children in Canada’s Family Courts: Growing Acceptance but Still Controversial

Judicial Interviews of Children in Canada’s Family Courts: Growing Acceptance but Still Controversial

Judicial Interviews of Children in Canada’s Family Courts: Growing Acceptance but Still Controversials

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Référence bibliographique [20115]

Bala, Nicholas, Birnbaum, Rachel et Cyr, Francine. 2016. «Judicial Interviews of Children in Canada’s Family Courts: Growing Acceptance but Still Controversial». Dans International Perspectives and Empirical Findings on Child Participation: From Social Exclusion to Child-Inclusive Policies , sous la dir. de Benedetta Faedi Duramy et Gal, Ṭali, p. 135-157. New York: Oxford University Press.

Fiche synthèse

1. Objectifs


Intentions :
«This chapter reviews the various methods used to allow children to participate in legal disputes between separated parents, and then focuses on the law and empirical research on experiences in Canada regarding children meeting with judges.» (p. 135) «The focus of this chapter is whether and how judges should meet children in high-conflict cases that are resolved in family courts.» (p. 136)

2. Méthode


Échantillon/Matériau :
Données documentaires diverses

Type de traitement des données :
Réflexion critique

3. Résumé


«While it is now accepted that the views of a child should be considered by the judge in a family case, there is considerable variation and controversy about how this is to be done. A number of different methods can be used […]: hearsay evidence, related by a witness […]; video-recording […]; written statement […]; testimony by the child in court; and a meeting with the child in the judge’s chambers.» (p. 140-141) «In civilian Quebec, consistent with the approach to judicial interviews with children […], Article 34 of the Civil Code establishes that children in family cases have the right to an ‘opportunity to be heard’ by the court […]. Except for Quebec, with its presumptive statutory provision, until recently Canadian judges were very reluctant to exercise their jurisdiction to meet children. […] Canadian judges have also expressed concern that an interview might traumatize a child.» (p. 142-143) «The change in attitude and practices is […] a result of ongoing dialogue and education about this issue among Canadian judges and lawyers. A number of education programs in different parts of the country have addressed this issue. […] The ongoing discussion and education within Canada also reflects the influence of Canadian judges engaging in discussion with judges in jurisdiction where the practice is more common. In particular, the experiences of judges from Quebec have been shared with judges in the rest of Canada at judicial meetings, which has influenced the practice of judges outside of that province.» (p. 153)