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Legal Information/ Legal Briefs

Legal Briefs

Until 2010, these legal briefs provide examples of judgments pertaining to everyday situations. Beginning in 2012, they deal with various topics of general interest, such as rental issues, family law, human rights, civil liability, insurance, dealings between spouses and social aid. They are intended to inform and to prevent undesirable situations.


Legal Briefs 2018

Legal brief
Brief overview of the legalization of cannabisThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
On October 17, 2018, Canada legalized cannabis. However, it would be wrong to think that, from now on, anything goes. On the contrary, various laws and regulations govern cannabis, and a person who steps outside of the legal framework could be charged with a criminal offence or receive a statement o more
Should I worry about a seizure if I am recipient of last resort assistance?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Jasmin has just lost a case before the Régie du logement. He now owes his landlord $3,000. The landlord has told him he will seize everything he owns, which worries Jasmin, who is a recipient of last resort assistance.

First and foremost, Jasmin should know that the right resulting from a jud
I just found out that I am not my child's fatherThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Mario and Joanie (fictional names) have been living together for several years and have a child together. The act of birth of the child, whose name is Vincent, indicates Mario and Joanie as his parents. The couple separates when Vincent is seven years old. Despite the separation, Mario continues to take care of Vincent and provides for him.

Some time after the separation, Mario bumps into someone who, through his statements, raises a doubt in Mario's mind regarding his paternity with respect to Vincent. Mario decides to dispel all doubts and, while Vincent is staying with him, Mario takes the opportunity to have a DNA test for him and Vincent. The test confirms, with a probability of 99.9%, that, unfortunately, Mario is not Vincent's father. From that point on, Mario decides to sever all ties with the child.1

Mario also decides to initiate court proceedings to contest his paternity. The judge refuses his application, based on the reasons set out in the second paragraph of article 530 of the Civil Code of Québec which states: "No one may contest the status of a person whose possession of status is consistent with his act of birth." Once these two conditions have been met, it is impossible to contest filiation.

Mario's situation satisfies these two conditions: His name appears on the child's act of birth and he has behaved like a father towards the child since the child's birth, thereby acquiring a "possession of status" consistent with Vincent's act of birth. Consequently it is impossible for Mario to contest his paternity, even if he is not Vincent's biological father. Mario will therefore continue to be Vincent's legal father, with all the effects this status entails.

The declaration of paternity made when a child is born is an important and serious act which gives rise to legal obligations. Indeed, under article 523 of the Civil Code of Québec: "Paternal filiation and maternal filiation are proved by the act of birth, regardless of the circumstances of the child’s birth." In certain very specific situations, a father can contest the paternity established in a child's act of birth. The decision will focus primarily on possession of status, which depends on three criteria: the child's family name (this is not a decisive criterion), the fact that the father has acted as the real parent and the fact that the child's circle of family and friends considers the father to be the child's parent.

You should therefore be highly aware of the impact of having your name inserted on a child's act of birth.

1 Note that a test obtained in this manner is not accepted as evidence in court.

Legal brief *
October  2018
Number  08
Text prepared by  
* The information set out in this document is not a legal interpretation.
The masculine is used to designate persons solely in order to simplify the text.
August - September
Réal lives in the Îles-de-la-Madeleine and wants know whether he is financially eligible for legal aidThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Réal has been living in the Îles-de-la-Madeleine for close to 10 years and wants to get custody of his son Michel, who is 10 years old and lives with him.

Real has a yearly gross income of $32,050. He has $5,000 in the bank. 

He wonders whether he is financially eligible for legal
What is bullying?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Bullying, also known as intimidation, is repeated behaviour that is intended to cause fear, intimidation, humiliation, distress or other forms of harm to another person’s body, feelings, self-esteem, reputation or property: Bullying can be direct or indirect and can take place by physical, verbal or more
Voluntary Disclosure ProgramThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Perhaps you didn't fulfil all your obligations under the tax laws. For example, perhaps you failed to declare some income over the past few years. The voluntary disclosure program may allow you to rectify your tax situation.1

If your application more
Voluntary depositThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
If you are having trouble paying your bills and your creditors are losing patience, voluntary deposit may be an interesting solution for you. It may allow you to avoid bankruptcy.

Voluntary deposit is dealt with in articles 664 and following of the Code of Civil Procedure of Québec.1&nbs
Am I obliged to identify myself at the request of a police officer?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
As a general rule, despite the existence of a moral and social duty on the part of every citizen to answer questions from a police officer and assist the police,1a person does not have the obligation to disclose their identity to a police officer. However, it is important to realize that more
Acknowledgements of debtThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
In January 2015, Alex lends Rose, his co-lessee, an amount of $3,000 to help her buy a used car. “I’ll pay you back very soon,” she promises. No document is signed. Time passes and Rose seems to have forgotten her debt. 

In June 2016, Rose, who no longer has a car, is about to move out i
Can I object to a notice of assessment?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
You’ve just received a notice of assessment or determination from the government indicating that you owe a significant amount of money. You are completely flabbergasted, because there is no way you owe that much. In fact, you provided all the required documents. There must be a mistake! The followin more
© Commission des services juridiques Création: Diane Laurin - 2017