Decision-making responsibility/parenting time/contact/support

Important notice:
Some of our services have temporarily changed due to the COVID‑19 crisis. The information provided on this page may no longer be accurate. Please visit our COVID‑19 client page to learn how this may impact you.

If you qualify, and you do not have a final court order, we can help you and your ex decide:

  • decision-making responsibility (formerly custody): who can make major decisions (for example, school, health care, religion, etc.) about how to care for and raise your child
  • residence: where your child will live
  • parenting time/contact (formerly access): how your child spends time with the person they do not live with and how you and your ex share holidays/special days
  • support: how much money the parent who does not live with the children pays to the other parent

If you qualify, you will be provided with a certificate, which is a voucher that guarantees a lawyer who accepts legal aid work will be paid a certain amount of hours to work with you. If more hours are needed, your lawyer may contact us to demonstrate that a discretionary increase in hours should be granted. If it is not granted, you may be responsible for paying for the hours that are not covered on your certificate.

Changing your final court orders for decision-making responsibility/residence/parenting time/contact/support

You can get help from a Family Law Information Centre at the courthouse if you have a final court order and you want to ask the court to change it. You must qualify for this service.

If there is a legal aid lawyer (called advice lawyers) available, you can get 20 minutes of free general advice. The advice lawyer may also give you a referral to a family law service centre. Visit advice lawyer services to check if you qualify.

If you do not qualify for legal aid services and you do not have a lawyer, visit our Making a motion to change without a lawyer page for more information.

How do I apply for legal aid?