“Family Law” includes legal issues like separation, divorce, child custody and access, child support, and spousal support. This page includes information and links about family law, family/domestic violence and getting legal help.
Although we do not practice family law, we can provide information and referrals. We can also work with family lawyers on HIV-related issues. Please see Getting legal help below.
Know your rights: Guide for Parents Living with HIV
This guide is available from the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network:
- French: www.aidslaw.ca/site/know-your-rights-guide-for-parents-living-with-hiv/?lang=fr.
Family Law information
The Ontario Government website has information about family law in Ontario: www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca/english/justice-ont/family_law.asp
The Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) website includes information on family law and legal aid in Ontario: www.legalaid.on.ca/en/getting/type_family.asp
Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO) has pamphlets about family law on the CLEO website or in print: www.cleo.on.ca/english/pub/onpub/subject/family.htm
Family/Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence and Abuse
If you are afraid that someone might hurt you, your child or someone that you know, you can talk to a lawyer or a legal clinic to find out about options (see below for legal help). Please see our Other Areas of Law section for more information for victims of crime.
The Assaulted Women’s Helpline is a free 24 hour confidential telephone service and TTY crisis line for all women who have experienced abuse; provides counselling, emotional support, information and referrals: telephone 416-863-0511 or toll-free 1-866-863-0511, TTY 416-364-8762 or TTY toll-free 1-866-863-7868, www.awhl.org/.
Talk4Healing is a-24 hour culturally grounded, fully confidential helpline/on-line chat for Indigenous women available in 14 languages all across Ontario: telephone 1-855-554-HEAL (4325) https://www.talk4healing.com/.
Guide: Women living with HIV and intimate partner violence: Questions and Answers / Femmes vivant avec le VIH et violence au sein d’une relation intime : Questions et Réponses
This guide is for women, including trans women, who are living with HIV and who experience or are at risk of experiencing violence from their intimate partner. Intimate partner violence can be physical, emotional, psychological or sexual abuse from someone with whom you have or had an intimate relationship. The guide is available on our website:
- Women living with HIV and intimate partner violence: Questions & Answers (2016May) www.halco.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Women-with-HIV-and-intimate-partner-violence-2016May-EN.pdf
- Femmes vivant avec le VIH et violence au sein d’une relation intime : Questions et réponses (2016mai) www.halco.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Women-with-HIV-and-intimate-partner-violence-2016May-FR.pdf
The guide can be printed in booklet format in Adobe Reader or Acrobat. The guide is available in Spanish and Swahili on the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network website: www.aidslaw.ca/site/women-living-with-hiv-and-intimate-partner-violence-questions-and-answers/?lang=en.
The Assaulted Women’s Helpline website has information about “Web Security – Erasing Your Tracks” on-line to reduce the chance that someone else can easily find out the websites that you have visited: www.awhl.org/social-media-web-security.
Here are some other sources of information about family/domestic violence:
- Do you know a woman who is being abused? A legal rights handbook that includes information on many issues is available on the Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO) website and in print: www.cleo.on.ca/english/pub/onpub/PDF/criminal/handbook.pdf
- Elder Abuse booklet on the Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO) and in print: www.cleo.on.ca/english/pub/onpub/PDF/seniors/elderab.pdf
- Domestic violence information from Legal Aid Ontario (LAO): telephone 416-979-1446 or toll-free 1-800-668-8258, TTY 416-598-8867 or TTY toll-free 1-866-641-8867, www.legalaid.on.ca/en/getting/type_domesticviolence.asp
- Ontario Government website information about programs and services for victims of crime: www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca/english/ovss/programs.asp
- Government of Canada Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime website information about victim services, victim rights, and registering as a victim: www.victimsfirst.gc.ca/index.html
Getting legal help
If you are living with HIV in Ontario and have family law questions, please contact us for information and referrals.
If you live in Ontario:
- your local community legal clinic may provide you with information and referrals. You can find your local legal clinic using the Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) website: https://www.legalaid.on.ca/services/legal-clinics/.
- you can contact Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) for family law information and assistance: www.legalaid.on.ca/en/getting/type_family.asp
The Law Society Referral Service (LSRS) of the Law Society of Ontario is an on-line service that provides a referral to a lawyer or paralegal for an in-person or phone consultation of up to 30 minutes at no charge: https://lsrs.lso.ca/lsrs/welcome. The LSRS crisis telephone for people in custody, in crisis, in a shelter or in a remote community without internet access is 416-947-5255 or toll-free 1-855-947-5255, Monday to Friday 9 am to 5 pm. The Law Society of Ontario was formerly the Law Society of Upper Canada.