We’re committed to working with you to find a flexible arrangement to meet your needs.

Macphail Harding has considerable history helping families through the difficulties of separation and divorce.  We pride ourselves on providing compassionate and empathetic care to our clients during what can be an arduous time.  And we appreciate that not every couple has an acrimonious separation.  More now than ever before there are multiple options for settling family matters, including collaborative law, mediation, arbitration, as well as the traditional court involvement.

Family law matters can be long, involved, and expensive. If you are low income, but do not qualify for legal aid, please speak to us about options to reduce your legal costs. We’re committed to working with you to find a flexible arrangement to meet your needs, including limited scope retainers.

We can provide a variety of options for our provision of services to help you bring your family matter to closure.

Some areas in which we provide assistance include:

  • Divorce and/or separation
  • Family law agreements (prenuptial, cohabitation, separation, etc.)
  • Guardianship
  • Custody, access, parenting
  • Child Support
  • Spousal Support
  • Property Division
  • Restraining and Protection Orders
  • Travel Documents
  • Adoption

Child and Youth Representation

Macphail Harding offers the specialized service of representing children and youth in family law matters.

Some parents wonder why children need a lawyer when parents are the ones who are responsible for making decisions in the best interests of their children. Our position is that it is a right of the children to participate in and be heard with respect to all decisions made about them. In 1991 Canada ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).

Article 12 of the UNCRC states:

States Parties shall assure to the child who is capable of forming his or her own views the right to express those views freely in all matters affecting the child, the views of the child being given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child.

For this purpose, the child shall in particular be provided the opportunity to be heard in any judicial and administrative proceedings affecting the child, either directly, or through a representative or an appropriate body, in a manner consistent with the procedural rules of national law.

The Courts in Calgary often use the saying “a voice not a choice” when describing the approach to a child’s expressed wishes in a family law matter. This refers to the recognized right to be heard, but also acknowledges that the parents (and if necessary, the Courts) make the decisions.

Macphail Harding’s approach to representing children and youth is to assist the family in reducing conflict and reaching an informed and amicable resolution. We often serve as a source of information gathering by speaking with third parties, such as school staff and teachers, medical professionals, and friends of family members heavily involved with the children.

The ”best interests of the children” is the paramount factor in making any decisions regarding children and youth, and it is our belief that children and youth have the right to have their own lawyer advocating for them to make sure all the adults making these decisions know and understand how that child or youth feels and what is most important to them.

Limited Scope Retainers

Accessing affordable legal services is becoming increasingly difficult for most individuals and families.

Accessing affordable legal services is becoming increasingly difficult for most individuals and families. Macphail Harding is dedicated to ensuring every person can access the justice system and the legal rights they deserve. As such, we offer limited scope retainers for some matters.

With limited scope retainers, we essentially break out our legal services into individual steps from which our clients choose which steps they will perform themselves and which steps they wish to have a lawyer perform.

Some services we can provide outside of full representation include:

  • Drafting of court documents without going to court;
  • Providing legal advice without going to court;
  • Limited representation without going to court, such as at settlement meetings; or
  • Limited representation in going to court, such as shorter appearances or pre-trial conferences.

Limited scope retainers are often more affordable and offer the client more control over their file while having access to the advice and experience of a lawyer.

Not all legal matters are suited for limited scope retainers, so please contact one of our lawyers for more information about your specific matter.