Family Law – Protection Concerns / Family Violence and Judicial Case Conference (JCC)


When attending a Judicial Case Conference (“JCC”), the parties and their lawyers (if any) will attend Supreme Court to try and work out any matters which the parties can agree on or consent to.  The Court will make procedural orders, even if not agreed upon by the parties (for example, a deadline by which Lists of Documents need to be exchanged, or a deadline for disclosure of certain documents).  A JCC is necessary before a party can bring an interim application (though there are exceptions in emergency or urgent cases).

JCCs can be daunting for some parties to family litigation since this may be the first time a party will be in the same room or vicinity as a former spouse.  The matter may be complicated when there are protection orders or where there are concerns with respect to family violence by one of the parties to the proceedings.

The Supreme Court does not have access to Provincial Court files as a matter of course, which may contain a protection order.  Therefore, if you have concerns with respect to safety at a JCC (due to a history of family violence or because of a significant power imbalance), it is imperative that you notify your lawyer of your safety concerns as soon as possible before the JCC or, if you are representing yourself at the JCC, notify the Registry staff of your concerns as soon as possible.

If necessary, the sheriffs will ensure that a sheriff is present during the proceedings.  The Judge or Master will also be made aware of your concerns and can prevent you from having to sit facing the other party at the JCC.  This will help protect you and the presiding Judge or Master against any violence by the other party to the proceedings.

If you would like to book an appointment with any of our family law lawyers, namely Kathleen Sugiyama, Christopher Murphy or Nathan Seaward, please contact Heath Law LLP at 250-753-2202.