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Parenting after Separation and Divorce Program

The Separation and Divorce program helps people dealing with family breakdown.

The program does not provide lawyers or legal services. It is recommended that everyone involved in a family law matter consult with a lawyer. If you do not have a lawyer, you may choose to contact Legal Aid Saskatchewan or the Family Law Information Centre at 306-787-5837 or toll free at 1-888-218-2822.

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1. Benefits

The Parenting after Separation and Divorce program aims to:

  • provide for the best interest of the child or children in family disputes;
  • assist in increasing people's understanding of the issues by providing information about the available options for resolution, legal issues, child support, custody and parenting;
  • provide information that assists in promoting consensual conflict resolution methods that lead to long-lasting resolution of issues; and
  • reduce the number of family matters that return to the court for adjudication or variation.

The program is carried out over two three-hour sessions or one six-hour session. The following topics are covered:

  • Stages of Separation/Divorce
  • Options for Resolving Disputes
  • Children’s Reactions to Divorce/Separation
  • Children’s Developmental Stages
  • How to Make Family Changes Easier on the Children
  • Pre and Post Separation Relationships
  • New Relationships

These sessions are facilitated by social workers, mediators and or educators.

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2. Eligibility

In any family law proceeding (except for inter-jurisdictional support orders) in which custody, access or child support is an issue, the parents must take part in the Parenting after Separation and Divorce program.

Parties are not required to attend the program if:

  • they file a certificate of attendance with the court proving that they have attended the Parenting after Separation and Divorce program or equivalent program within the last two years;
  • they obtain an order from the court exempting them from attendance; or
  • all the parties to the proceeding certify in writing that a written agreement has been entered into settling all issues respecting custody, access and child support.

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3. How To Apply

The parent initiating the action must:

  • attend the Parenting after Separation and Divorce program and file a certificate of attendance with the court before taking any further step in the proceeding; and
  • serve the Respondent (other parent) with the Notice to Attend the Parenting After Separation and Divorce program with the document commencing the family law proceeding.

The Respondent must attend the Parenting after Separation and Divorce program and file a certificate of attendance before taking any further step in the proceeding.

There is no cost to the program. Pre-registration is required to ensure that separating partners do not attend the same sessions.

The program is offered in 11 centres:
Estevan
La Ronge
Meadow Lake
Moose Jaw
North Battleford
Regina
Prince Albert 
Saskatoon 
Swift Current 
Weyburn
Yorkton 
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4. Apply

You may register by calling the area nearest you:

Regina Area Saskatoon Area

Parent Education Unit
323 - 3085 Albert Street
Phone: 306-787-9905 }
Toll-free: 1-888-218-2822
Email: parented@gov.sk.ca

Parent Education Unit
7th Floor - 224-4th Ave. S.
Phone: 306-964-4401
Toll-free: 1-877-964-5501
Email: parented@gov.sk.ca

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5. Further Information

Failure to attend at the Parenting after Separation and Divorce program when required to do so may result in the court, upon application by the other parent:

  • striking out that party's pleadings or other documents;
  • refusing to allow that party to make submissions on an application or at trial; or
  • ordering attendance at a program within a specified time and adjourning the application.

The application for exemption from attendance may be made ex parte (with only one parent appearing in court). The grounds for granting an exemption must be one of the following:

  • the applicant is seeking interim custody through an ex parte application for a restraining order where there has been domestic violence;
  • a child of the party has been kidnapped or abducted; or
  • in the opinion of the court, there are extraordinary circumstances.

A court may postpone the requirement to attend the Parenting after Separation and Divorce program where one of the parties has made a change that only affects on side of a custody or access arrangement. This application may be made ex parte.

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