Mazzeo Law, a marital lawyer in Vaughan is offering free advice to soon-to-wed couples: Read up on family laws before you tie the knot.
The family lawyer is part of a top Ontario law firm specializing in family and real estate laws, as well as wills and estates. The firm’s website provides free access to valuable information on various aspects of family law, particularly in Ontario.
According to the attorney, who is also an estate planning lawyer in Vaughan, brushing up on family law basics is a simple but great way to invest in the future of the relationship. “It is possible to be optimistic and pragmatic at the same time,” he said. “Understanding the basics of family law is an important first step in securing your future, and protecting yourself and your assets.”
He suggests including a consultation with an expert and trusted family lawyer as part of the pre-wedding to-do tasks. “It’s always great to know what your options are. Seeing a family lawyer should not be a dreaded activity. It should be seen as an opportunity to protect the future of the relationship,” he added.
Canada’s family laws are governed by federal and provincial legislation. It covers married persons, cohabiting couples and children. The laws also apply to both same-sex and opposite-sex couples.
A family lawyer can help ensure that the rights of the parties involved in the relationship are protected, regardless of whatever happens in the future. A prenuptial agreement is one way to do this. This type of agreement protects rights to the children, the pets, the property and the financial assets, in the case of separation or divorce.
Another option is to execute a domestic contract. For common-law spouses, this contract is called a cohabitation agreement. This type of agreement can help couples deal with property division and spousal support, if need be. However, issues relating to children cannot be covered by a domestic contract. While a lawyer is not required to make a domestic contract, it is strongly advised to consult with a family lawyer before signing one.
For cohabiting couples, a domestic contract is crucial for managing joint financial expenses such as rental, loans and savings. A recent report noted how young couples tend to overlook these important issues when living together, only to be ‘surprised’ when the relationship suddenly ends and the legalities of splitting assets and properties now have to be dealt with.
In Ontario, a couple is considered in a common-law relationship if they have been living together for at least three years or if less, if they have a child together. Unless a domestic contract was signed, common-law spouses have fewer legal rights compared to married couples in the event of separation. In situations like this where there is huge investment, both financially and emotionally, it is always prudent to consult with a lawyer for advice on how to ensure that one partner’s future is not dependent on the status of the relationship.
The same marital lawyer advised couples to research together. He furthered, “Over the years, we’ve seen how knowledge of family laws has helped couples start their marriage on the same page by agreeing on shared plans and goals. Communication is key. A secure future is a solid foundation for a long-lasting relationship.”
Visit the firm’s website to book a consultation with a marital lawyer in Vaughan or to find out more about family laws in Ontario.
Contact us at any time:
Mazzeo Law Barristers & Solicitors
Phone: (905) 851-5909
Fax: (905) 851-3514