Sadly, many people are impacted by domestic violence and abuse in the family context, which may have a lasting and devastating impact on both victims and families. Domestic violence and abuse may take place in a single incident or as part of a pattern of ongoing harmful behaviour and may take many forms, including: physical abuse; mental abuse; cultural abuse; financial abuse; and threats.

There are certain steps that victims of domestic violence and abuse can try to take to protect themselves and their loved ones. The Government of Ontario recommends:

  • Calling 911 and advising of the incident(s);
  • Making noise to encourage neighbors;
  • Teaching children to call police;
  • Leaving the house;
  • Making a safety plan;
  • Contacting support services;
  • When preparing to leave:
    • Open a bank account in your name and save money;
    • Plan emergency exits;
    • Hide extra clothes and belongings required to live away from the home; and
    • Take essential paperwork including passports and birth certificates.

Aside from self-help actions that individuals can take, the law in Ontario also provides victims with legal recourse in response to domestic violence and abuse. These include:

  • Having a court consider the misconduct when making orders (or varying existing ones) pertaining to parenting (i.e. custody and access). Many times, courts order supervised access to children as part of a response to domestic violence and abuse, keeping the best interests of the child in mind;
  • Obtaining restraining orders. Such orders may require the spouse to either stay away from the other spouse entirely or to stay away from certain areas (i.e. the victim’s workplace, the children’s school, the home in which the children and victim live, etc.). The failure to abide by a retraining order can lead to an arrest and criminal charges;
  • Obtaining exclusive possession of the matrimonial home, particularly where children are involved. A court will consider whether granting such an order is fair in the circumstances, but it places great emphasis on the best interests of the children in its analysis; and
  • Beginning a civil lawsuit. In Ontario, victims of domestic violence and abuse are entitled to sue the perpetrator spouse and to claim monetary damages, among other things, for battery, assault, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

At Kamalie Law our lawyers are well versed in assisting and providing guidance to those dealing with domestic violence and abuse. Contact Kamalie Law for a free consultation.

Frequently asked questions

A breach of contract happens when one party under the contract fails to fulfill their obligations – either partially, or fully. This means that someone (a person or a corporation) either did something that they were not supposed to do or did not do something that they were supposed to do. Their conduct has shown that they are not honouring the contract. 

While this is a broad definition, there are multiple types of breach of contract and multiple ways that a breach of contract can be resolved. While we may naturally think of one party simply failing to pay or someone failing to deliver goods or services, there are multiple different parts of a contract that can be breached, and the remedies may be different in different situations. 

There are two main remedies that litigants seek and are awarded in a breach of contract lawsuit.

An award of damages is one of the most well-known remedies. The innocent party may seek all out-of-pocket expenses and unquantified damages (i.e., loss of business, reputational losses, etc.) that it has suffered as a result of the defaulting party. However, the question of what damages may be claimed and awarded is not always met with a simple answer. Although most damages suffered can be claimed, courts will often exclude damage that it considers to be ‘remote’, or which was not a ‘reasonably foreseeable’ consequence of the breach of contract. 

Another remedy is called specific performance, which is a court declaration requiring a contracting party to fulfill its contractual obligations. This remedy is typically only granted when courts determine that damages are an inadequate remedy. It must be noted, however, that a declaration for specific performance does not actually force a party to fulfill their contractual obligations. In other words, although a court may award specific performance, the defaulting party may choose to ignore the order and to continue acting in breach of contract. In such situations, the innocent party may proceed to seek damages and may seek an order that the defaulting party is in contempt of court.

At Kamalie Law, our lawyers have extensive experience in litigating and resolving contract disputes. We have represented both the innocent party that wishes to commence a claim as well as the party who is alleged to be in breach of contract and is forced to defend a claim. In each scenario, our primary objective is to determine our client’s objectives and to formulate a strategy that will achieve that objective in the least time possible. 


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