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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 2021

Legal brief
The age of consent for sexual activitiesThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
In Canada, the age of consent for sexual activities is 16. This means that, subject to certain exceptions, a person under the age of 16 cannot consent to sexual activities. It is important to know that the term “sexual activities” includes all activities of a sexual nature (kissing, touching a part more
Participating in an Offence: Encouraging and AidingThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
John, Felix and Annabelle are talking to each other as they leave school. Felix is thinking about stealing a bag of chips from the local convenience store.

John encourages him to do it and then leaves to go home.

Felix and Annabelle enter the convenience store. They agreed that Annabel
The Youth Protection Act and Its Placement PeriodsThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
One of the objectives of the Youth Protection Act is that a child be able to remain with his family or be able to return to his family as soon as possible, if it is in the child’s best interests. At what point does one determine that the objective of returning a child to his family is no long more
August - September
HAS or SARPA, which applies to me?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Homologation assistance service (HAS)

The Homologation Assistance Service is intented for parties residing in Quebec who wish, for whatever reason, to modify arrangements pertaining to child custody or access rights or support involving a child or spouse (or more
June - July
Nicole and Raymond own a family home and have money in their bank account. Are they financially eligible for legal aid?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Nicole and Raymond have been living together for over a year. Raymond works at the village hotel as a waiter. Nicole occasionally babysits. They have a combined annual gross income of $40,100. They have no children. They own a family home worth $110,000, which is fully paid off. They have $6,000 in more
Moving and the New Divorce ActThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
The new Divorce Act (hereinafter the “Act”), which came into force on March 1, 2021, governs moves by separated persons with parenting time or decision-making responsibilities in respect of a child of the marriage. There are two regimes that distinguish between a change in the place of residenc more
Buying a Vehicle and Third Chance Credit This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
You’ve been unlucky and you have bad credit. You’ve just declared bankruptcy and are unable to find financing. In these situations, it can be tempting to go to a car dealership offering a second or even third chance at credit, especially since their advertising indicates that no one is refused!
How Can I Intervene in the Case of a Child Who is Dear to Me When a Hearing in the Youth Division is Scheduled? This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
First of all, you should know that a child’s file in the Court of Québec – Youth Division is highly confidential. You cannot consult it or obtain information unless you are a party to the case.

Only the child, the child’s father (legally recognized), the child’s mother and the representative of the Director of Youth Protection have the status of parties to the dispute. They will have access to the documents filed for purposes of a hearing initiated when the Director of Youth Protection considers that a child’s security or development is in danger. They will also be able to attend the hearing, fileevidence in the Court record, be represented by a lawyer and examine and cross-examine the other parties and witnesses.

However, in order to intervene at the hearing, you can make an application before the hearing as an interested person. You have to act quickly and in strict compliance with the requirements of the Youth Protection Act.

In that regard, the requirements for this very specific application are set out in s. 81 para. 2 of the Youth Protection Act:

“Any person who wishes to intervene at the hearing in the interest of the child may, on an application, testify before the tribunal and make representations if the person has information likely to enlighten the tribunal, and may, for that purpose, be assisted by an advocate. The tribunal may, for exceptional reasons, in urgent cases or if the parties present at the hearing consent to it, authorize the person to make the application orally.”

Obviously, this application must be made in the interests of the child and not in the interests of the person making the application. It may be presented by a person who is significant in the child’s life, such as an aunt or uncle or a grandparent.

Being recognized as an “interested person” allows you to be heard, but does not allow you to examine or cross-examine the other parties, obtain the reports filed in the Court record, make representations (what we call pleadings) or even obtain a copy of the judgment once it is rendered.

Since 2017, s. 83 of the Youth Protection Act allows the foster family to be admitted to the hearing concerning the child entrusted to it, without the need for a prior application. 

The foster family will be able to present its observations and be represented by a lawyer. However, unless the Court grants permission, the foster family will not be able to participate otherwise in the hearing, since it does not have the status of party.

Lastly, s. 81 para. 3 of the Youth Protection Act allows any person to apply for the status of party:

“For the requirements of the hearing, the tribunal may grant a person the status of party to the hearing if the tribunal considers it advisable to do so in the interest of the child. The status of party remains valid until withdrawn by a decision or order of the tribunal.”

When the Court grants this application, the person will have the same rights as the other parties. In order to obtain this status, you must be able to convince the Court that your participation in the debate is essential. This application is granted only exceptionally.

These steps can be complex. Therefore, don’t hesitate to consult a lawyer at a legal aid office near you for assistance.

Don’t hesitate to have your eligibility for legal aid evaluated by making an appointment at a legal aid office near you.

To find the contact information for your legal aid office, please visit our website at www.csj.qc.ca.

Legal brief *
March  2021
Number  3
Text prepared by   Me Marie-Ève Bouchard
* 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.
The Right to Remain SilentThis hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
The presumption of innocence: It’s a fundamental principle of the Canadian justice system pursuant to which an accused is presumed innocent until proven otherwise, that is, until the person themselves admits their guilt or, at trial, the prosecution shows their guilt beyond a reasonab more
How is Child or Spousal Support Paid?This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Henriette and Léopaul have three children. After living together for 12 years, they split up. Following a few mediation sessions, both parents agree that Léopaul will have sole custody of the three children since Henriette has a job that requires her to travel out of town for varying periods of time more
© Commission des services juridiques Création: Diane Laurin - 2017