glossary

Glossary

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An adoption consent is a document a parent signs that says they agree to place their child for adoption. The document must be signed in front of a lawyer.

If the child being adopted is 7 years or older, they also have to agree to their adoption. The child meets with a lawyer from the Office of the Children’s Lawyer before signing a consent.

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Advice counsel are private lawyers or Legal Aid Ontario staff lawyers located in all family courts who give basic information on family law to anyone who wants information. For example, advice counsel can explain legal terms, how to start or respond to a court application, and the court process.

If your income is low enough, advice counsel can also give you legal advice about child custody and access, child support and spousal support, dividing property, divorce, and most other family law matters.

Title: affidavit
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An affidavit is a sworn statement in writing. The person making the statement must sign it after they swear an oath or promise to tell the truth, just as if they were a witness in a courtroom.

Title: affidavit
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An affidavit is a document where a witness makes statements about facts that they say are true. The document must be sworn in front of an authorized person, such as a lawyer or commissioner of oaths.

Title: affirmation
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When a person makes an affirmation, they give a formal promise that a statement is true. An affirmation may be used in place of an oath. For example, an affirmation may be used when a person isn’t able to take an oath because of religious reasons.

Title: agent
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An agent is someone you ask to act on your behalf. It can be a lawyer, a paralegal, a family member, or a friend. You can ask an agent to go to court for you if the offence you were charged with carries a maximum penalty of 6 months in jail and/or a $5000 fine and is:

The person acting as your agent appears in the court as if they are you.

If your case is indictable (or hybrid and the crown has not elected), you need a "designation of counsel" in order to have your lawyer or their agent appear on your behalf.

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All-in price advertising means that dealers cannot add additional fees on top of an advertised price. Exceptions that dealers can charge are HST, licensing fees, or fees for options that you ask for.

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Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) refers to different ways or processes that try to get people to agree on their legal issues without going to court. Some of these processes are collaborative family law, mediation, and arbitration.

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This is a formal document used to begin a proceeding in court. An information can be used to accuse a person of a criminal offence or to ask for a hearing for a peace bond.

In a criminal proceeding, the information is usually sworn by a police officer who has reasonable and probable grounds to believe the person committed a criminal offence.

In a non-criminal proceeding, a private citizen usually swears an information to ask for a peace bond against someone they have a reasonable fear of.  Private citizens can also swear informations for criminal offences.

Title: annulment
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An annulment is a court order that your marriage was not valid from the start. You might get one if, for example, your partner was still married to someone else when they married you.

It is rare to get an annulment to legally end a marriage. Most of the time you need to get a divorce to legally end a marriage.

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