Navigating the Early Resolution Process for Family Cases in BC Provincial Court (Webinar Repeat) 

Jan. 13, 2021
Webinar Repeat Online

Veuillez notez, cet événement sera disponible en anglais seulement.

Air Date: This is the archived version of a program presented on January 13, 2021.

Susan Wishart, Associate Chief Judge, Provincial Court of British Columbia
Nancy Carter, Executive Director, Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation, Justice Services Branch, Ministry of Attorney General
Stephanie Melvin, Executive Director, Family Justice Services Division, Justice Services Branch, Ministry of Attorney General
Erin Smith, Senior Policy Analyst, Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation, Justice Services Branch, Ministry of Attorney General
Oriole Courcy, Program/Policy Analyst, Family Justice Services Division, Ministry of Attorney General

Format: Webinar Recording
CPD Hours: 1.5 Hours of Approved Continuing Professional Development in BC
Watching this on-demand recording provides you with 1.5 hours of the ethics, professional responsibility and practice management component for your Law Society of BC reporting.


The Provincial Court of BC and the Ministry of Attorney General rolled out a new approach to resolving family law disputes in BC Provincial Court in Surrey and Victoria on December 7, 2020. It puts family justice services in the path of families first to help them reach agreements where possible and to better ready them for court.

The model builds on existing family justice services to help families focus on earlier, more collaborative, resolution of their disputes. People are referred to assessment, mediation, and parenting education earlier in the process than under existing family court rules. Even if people don’t reach agreement on all issues, these services can help them narrow their dispute so it’s easier to proceed with a hearing in court.

Guest speakers from the Ministry and Provincial Court discuss,

  • Provincial Court Family Rules modernization
  • An overview of the new Early Resolution and Case Management process
  • The approach to forms
  • Where private Consensual Dispute Resolution / Alternative Dispute Resolution  fits into the early resolution requirements


About Associate Chief Judge Susan Wishart

In May of 2016 Judge Wishart was appointed Associate Chief Judge and appointed to Judicial Council commencing in July of 2016. As Associate Chief Judge, she serves on various committees including access to justice initiatives, court technology, and business intelligence. She has participated in changes to the Small Claims Rules and the Court’s planning to accommodate the implementation of the Civil Resolution Tribunal in 2017. She is also involved with the specialized courts across the province including Indigenous Courts, Downtown Community Court and Drug Treatment Court in Vancouver, and Victoria Integrated Court.

About Nancy Carter

Nancy Carter is currently the Executive Director, Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation, Justice Services Branch, Ministry of Attorney General.  Her office is tasked with the development of family policy and legislation initiatives and for leading and contributing to government’s family justice reform and transformation activities.  She has worked for the provincial government in a number of capacities for over 26 years. She previously led the legislative program for the Ministry with responsibility for approximately 100 of the Ministry’s statutes.  She has provided leadership in the development of democratic reform initiatives as well as civil and family law policy initiatives including the Family Law Act, the Wills Estates and Succession Act, the Limitation Act, the Franchises Act and other private law reforms.  She has a BA from the University of Victoria and an LLB from Osgoode Hall Law School.  Nancy was appointed Queen’s Counsel in December 2020. 

About Oriole Courcy

Oriole Courcy lives with her husband and two sons in Victoria, on the traditional and unceded territory of the Lkwungen and WSÁNEC peoples.  Oriole has spent the last 5 years working as a Senior Program and Policy Analyst with Family Justice Services Division (FJSD). In this role Oriole is responsible for a wide array of operational and policy support to staff at family justice centres and justice access centres throughout the province who deliver direct services to families. Oriole’s role also includes involvement in many family justice initiatives related to access to justice priorities. Oriole has been a public servant in British Columbia for nearly 20 years providing and supporting services to children and families in a number of different roles within the Ministry of Children and Family Development and the Ministry of Attorney General. A common thread throughout Oriole’s career has been dedication to promoting and creating access to opportunities for families to be actively engaged in decision making and dispute resolution. This has included leadership in collaborative planning and dispute resolution options in child protection, provincial implementation and coordination of Child Protection Mediation, expansion of publicly funded virtual family justice services, and most recently providing FJSD leadership to launch the Early Resolution and Case Management Model in Victoria.

About Erin Smith

Erin Smith is a Senior Policy Analyst with the Family Policy, Legislation and Transformation Division of Justice Services Branch, Ministry of Attorney General in Victoria, BC. She has been working with the Provincial Court (Family) Rules and participants in the family justice system in her many roles in the justice sector over the last 15 years including Civil Administrator and A/Manager, Registry Operations at Victoria Law Courts and as a policy analyst with Court Services Branch and now Justice Services Branch. She has been involved in the launch and training of registry staff for the Family Law Act, led the service of protection orders project for Court Services Branch, and served as a member of the Provincial Court Family Rules Working Group. Erin brings front-line service experience to her work supporting policy development and leading changes in how family law is accessed and delivered.


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