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Navigating Child Custody and Support in British Columbia

Right of First Refusal in British Columbia

Parents in British Columbia who share parenting responsibilities can benefit from a parental agreement or court-ordered agreement that outlines each parent’s rights and responsibilities. One of the provisions commonly included in these agreements is the Right of First Refusal.

What is the

Right of First Refusal in British Columbia? The Right of First Refusal is a clause that allows one parent the opportunity to care for their child if the other parent is unable to do so during their parenting time.

This clause ensures that the child spends the maximum amount of time with their parents while also ensuring that each parent gets the chance to care for their child. How does it work?

The Right of First Refusal works by giving the custodial parent the chance to offer parenting time to the other parent before seeking alternative childcare arrangements. If the other parent is willing and able to take the child, they assume responsibility and take care of the child during the specified time.

If the other parent is unable to care for the child, the original parent retains custody.

Enforceable and in the Best Interest of the Child

The Right of First Refusal is an enforceable provision that must be taken seriously by both parents. The provision is aimed at promoting the best interest of the child and maximizing parenting time, so violating it can have serious legal consequences.

If a dispute resolution process is initiated, the court will consider several factors to ensure that the enforcement of the Right of First Refusal is in the best interest of the child. These factors include the child’s attachment to each parent, the likelihood of harm to the child, and the history of non-compliance.

Denial of Parenting Time in British Columbia

When parents separate, one of the most critical issues that arises is determining how parenting time will be shared. Unfortunately, parents don’t always agree on parenting time, which can lead to one parent denying the other.

This can be frustrating, confusing, and even heart-wrenching for both the parent and child. Can I call the police if my ex will not let me see my child in British Columbia?

The short answer is no. Unless there is a court order in place stating that you are entitled to parenting time, the police cannot help.

You may go to court and file a petition to enforce your parenting time. What happens if the other parent is unreachable?

If the other parent is unreachable, you must demonstrate that you have made a reasonable effort to contact them. For example, you may send them a certified letter, an email, or a text message.

If you still cannot reach the other parent, you may contact a third party who is likely to know the other parent’s whereabouts, such as a family member or a mutual friend. What happens if you do not obey a parenting agreement or order in British Columbia?

If one parent consistently fails to comply with the parenting agreement or order, the other parent can file a petition to enforce it. A show cause hearing will be set, and the non-complying parent will be given the opportunity to explain why they have not complied with the agreement or order.

If the court finds that the parent has willfully disobeyed the agreement or order, they may be found in contempt of court and face sanctions such as fines, jail time, or a change in custody.


In conclusion, parents sharing parenting time in British Columbia need to keep the Right of First Refusal in mind to maximize parenting time while ensuring the best interest of the child. In the case of denial of parenting time, parents should take appropriate legal action, including filing a petition to enforce parenting agreements and orders.

While navigating parenting time can be challenging, it’s essential to keep the best interest of the child in mind above all else. Age and the Child’s Opinion in British Columbia

Child custody cases can be complicated, emotional, and challenging.

When parents separate or divorce, custody agreements must be made, taking into consideration the child’s best interests. However, as children grow older, they may have a different opinion on which parent they want to live with, leading to potential problems and conflicts between parents.

In British Columbia, certain laws govern situations where a child refuses to see a parent. At what age can a child refuse to see a parent in British Columbia?

There is no legal age in British Columbia at which a child can refuse to see a parent. However, a child’s opinion may be considered by the court if it is deemed to be mature and reasonable.

The court will also take into account the child’s age, level of emotional maturity, and ability to understand the impact of their decision. The child’s opinion can be evaluated through a Voice of the Child Report, where a professional assesses the child’s views and presents them to the court.

The court can then take the child’s opinion into consideration when making a decision about custody and visitation. If the child is too young to express an opinion, a guardian ad litem may be appointed by the court to represent the child’s best interests.

It’s essential to note that the child’s opinion is not the only factor that determines custody and visitation rights, and the court may still decide against the child’s wishes if it determines that it is not in the child’s best interests. If your child support agreement is causing problems at home…

Child support is an essential financial obligation in custody cases and ensures that both parents provide for their child’s needs. However, child support agreements can sometimes cause problems between parents, such as disagreements regarding payment, changes in circumstances, and other issues.

If you’re experiencing problems with your child support agreement at home, you may seek legal assistance to address your concerns. You can file a petition to modify the agreement if you or your ex-partner’s circumstances have changed significantly since the agreement was made.

Examples of significant changes could include job loss, illness, or relocation. Mediation and negotiations can also be helpful in resolving disputes regarding child support agreements.

It may be possible to avoid going to court by working with a mediator or lawyer to reach a mutual agreement that works for everyone.


Overall, when it comes to custody agreements and child support, it’s important to keep the child’s best interests at heart. In British Columbia, a child’s opinion can be taken into account when determining custody arrangements, but it’s not the only factor.

In cases where problems arise concerning child support agreements, it’s essential to seek legal assistance to address any concerns and work towards a mutually beneficial solution. This article covers important topics related to child custody and support in British Columbia.

The Right of First Refusal ensures maximum parenting time between parents, while the child’s opinion can be considered, regardless of age, in custody arrangements. Child support agreements can cause conflict, but legal assistance and mediation can help resolve any issues.

Through it all, the best interest of the child should remain at the forefront of all decisions. Remembering this can help parents navigate these complex and emotional situations with care and compassion.

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