What is a settlement conference in my family case and what happens at one?
2. Serve your documents
There is also a guide on how to serve documents.
Rule 3: Time tells you how to count time or days. Counting time or days is important because court staff won’t accept your documents if you have not followed the rules.
For example, if you have more than 7 days to serve or your documents or to confirm your court date, then Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays when court offices are closed are counted.
But if you have less than 7 days to serve or file your documents or to confirm your court date, then Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays when court offices are closed are not counted.
Whoever serves the documents on your partner must fill out Form 6B: Affidavit of Service. In it, they say when, where, and how they served your partner. The form proves that your partner got a copy of your documents and knows that they have to respond to them.
File your documents
You can now file most family law forms and supporting documents online. This includes your Form 17C: Settlement Conference Brief and Form 6B: Affidavit of Service. For more information on how to file online, read the question How do I file court forms for my family law case online?
But before you file your documents, you must remove all financial account numbers and personal identifying information. You do this by blacking out information like:
- social insurance numbers
- bank account numbers
- credit card numbers
- account numbers for mortgages, lines of credit, and other loans
You must keep the original documents that shows this information. A judge might ask to see it.
After you submit your documents online, you get an email to confirm that your documents have been submitted, but not yet filed with the court. Don’t delete the email. You should also print a copy or take a screenshot for your records.
Within 5 business days you find out if your documents have been accepted or rejected. If your documents are:
- accepted, you get an email confirming your documents have been filed
- rejected, you get an email saying your documents haven’t been filed, the reasons why they were rejected, and that any fees you paid will be refunded
If your documents are rejected, you can either:
- correct or fix all the things that led to your documents being rejected and then resubmit your corrected documents online if the deadline to submit them is more than 5 business days away, or
- file your documents in-person or, if allowed by the court, by email
If you’re not allowed to, or don’t want to file your documents online, then you have to file them in person at the courthouse. You do this at the court counter, with the help of the .
There is a guide on how to file documents.
Form 6B: Affidavit of Service is added to your continuing record. The continuing record is your court file that has all the important documents in your case. When you add a document to the continuing record, you also have to update the table of contents by listing each document you’re filing.
Your settlement conference brief is added to your court file, not to the continuing record. It goes in your court file so the judge can read it before your conference. It is given back to you after your settlement conference is over. This is because discussions at a settlement conference are private and can’t be shared with another judge.