PEI

Free family law courses focus on separation, divorce and child custody

Two family law information sessions on separation, divorce and child custody will be available for Islanders in November.

'We hope that people will come away feeling less intimidated by what they should do next'

Jenny Mason, a lawyer with Family Legal Aid, says there can be misconceptions around child-related issues when it comes to separation and divorce. (Angela Walker/CBC)

Two family law information sessions on separation, divorce and child custody will be available for Islanders in November.

The Community Legal Information Association of Prince Edward Island (CLIA) is hosting the information sessions for people to learn more about resolving custody and access disputes and how to best suit the interests of children.

Jenny Mason, a lawyer with Family Legal Aid, is hosting the first course in Charlottetown, and says the annual course is designed to help give Islanders a better understanding on how to tackle family-related issues.

"We'll talk about what your options might be. Court is sometimes an option but we try and encourage people to become informed about other options for them," she told Mainstreet P.E.I.

CLIA is hosting two information sessions for Islanders in November. The first is in Charlottetown and the second is in Summerside. (Getty Images)

"We hope that people will come away feeling less intimidated by what they should do next, in regard to arrangements for their children after they separate or divorce."

Best interests of children

The information course is called Best Interests of the Children in Custody and Access. Mason said the course can often help "put things into perspective" for parents.

There's a lot of questions and misconceptions around child-related issues when it comes to separation and divorce ... —Jenny Mason

"I think that when someone is going through separation or divorce it's a really difficult time personally and … it needs to be about what is best for your children and your family," she said.

Mason's approach to the course is tailored to something a lawyer once told her, who told her to ask her clients "what story do you want to tell about your separation or divorce to your children in 10 years and 20 years."

She said its helped parents focus on what's most important regarding a separation or divorce.

"There's a lot of questions and misconceptions around child-related issues when it comes to separation and divorce and it's important that people be provided with this information."

The first information session is in Charlottetown on Nov. 9.

The second session is in Summerside on Nov. 15.

With files from Mainstreet P.E.I.