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Property Division: Common Law Couples and Adult Interdependent Partners, Final Report 112


The Alberta Law Reform Institute recommends changes to the law for how common-law couples divide property if their relationship breaks down. This Report also recommends changes to the law for married couples who lived together before marriage and for adult interdependent partners who are not common law couples. Why is Law Reform Needed? 2016 Census data indicates that 320,260 Albertans consider themselves to be in common-law relationships. If common-law couples break up and cannot agree how […]

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FILE FR112.pdf

June 4, 2018

Property Division: Living Together Before Marriage, Report 31


It is not uncommon for couples to live together before getting married. In some cases, they will acquire significant property, such as a home, furniture and a vehicle. While the Matrimonial Property Act [MPA] applies a presumption of equal division to property acquired during the marriage, it exempts the property acquired before the marriage. Consequently, the original value of that property is not divided on separation or divorce; only the increase in value of that property, from […]

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FORMAT Publications
FILE RFD31.pdf

October 31, 2017

Property Division: Common Law Couples and Adult Interdependent Partners, Report 30


In recent decades, it has become increasingly common for couples to live together without being legally married. Couples who live together in a marriage-like relationship without being legally married are often said to be living in a common-law relationship. In Alberta, there are no legislated rules for property division upon the breakdown of a common-law relationship. The Matrimonial Property Act applies only to married spouses. Property division for common-law partners is based on legal ownership and the […]

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FILE RFD30.pdf

September 30, 2017

2017 Alberta Cohabitation Survey Results


In conjunction with its project on property division for common law couples and adult interdependent partners, ALRI partnered with the Population Research Lab at the University of Alberta to carry out a survey of Albertans’ attitudes and expectations towards cohabitation and property division. The survey resulted in 1,200 responses and helped guide the recommendations in Report for Discussion 30 – Property Division for Common Law Couples and Adult Interdependent Partners. Donna Fong, Rosanna Shih, and Dr. […]

AREA OF LAW Family Law Marriage & Divorce
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FORMAT Other
FILE AB_cohab_survey_results.pdf

September 8, 2017

2017 Alberta Cohabitation Survey Results


In conjunction with its project on property division for common law couples and adult interdependent partners, ALRI partnered with the Population Research Lab at the University of Alberta to carry out a survey of Albertans’ attitudes and expectations towards cohabitation and property division. The survey resulted in 1,200 responses and helped guide the recommendations in Report for Discussion 30 – Property Division for Common Law Couples and Adult Interdependent Partners. Donna Fong, Rosanna Shih, and Dr. […]

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FORMAT Other
FILE AB_cohab_survey_results.pdf

September 3, 2017

Wills and the Legal Effects of Changed Circumstances, Final Report 98


In its Final Report on Wills, the Alberta Law Reform Institute (ALRI) makes a number of recommendations for reform of the Wills Act. The main recommendations are in the following areas: “ Changes that Alter or Revoke a Will “ Revocation by Law “ Reviving a Revoked Will “ Admission of Extrinsic Evidence “ Rectification “ Failed Gifts “ Beneficiary Issues “ Ademption by Conversion “ Legal Discrimination Against Children Born Outside Marriage

AREA OF LAW Wills and Succession
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FORMAT Publications
FILE fr098.pdf

August 29, 2010

Family Law v. 18.2–Spousal Support, Report for Discussion 18.2


At the time of publication, Alberta’s law relating to spousal support after a divorce was unique in Canada, in that it incorporated the “fault doctrine.” This doctrine holds that in order to obtain support, a spouse must prove that he or she is the “innocent party” in the divorce (i.e., not responsible for the marriage breakdown), and that the other spouse is culpable (i.e., responsible for the marriage breakdown). This report suggests the elimination of […]

AREA OF LAW Family Law
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FORMAT Publications
FILE rfd18.2.pdf

October 2, 1998

The Matrimonial Home, Report for Discussion 14


This report discusses potential changes to the Dower Act and the Matrimonial Property Act. The Dower Act was created with the intent of supporting widows after the death of their husbands, by providing them with ownership, for the remainder of their lives, of the matrimonial home. This report investigates ways in which that intended support can be continued, given modern complexities. The report also considers situations in which, after a divorce or separation, a spouse can obtain occupation of the […]

AREA OF LAW Family Law Marriage & Divorce
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FORMAT Publications
FILE rfd14.pdf

March 2, 1995

Effect of Divorce on Wills, Final Report 72


In Alberta, divorce has no effect on a will made during marriage. If a person has made a will that leaves everything to their spouse, the will is not automatically revoked or otherwise affected by a subsequent divorce. If the person who made the will dies without changing their will or remarrying, everything would go to their former spouse in accordance with the pre-divorce will. In many Canadian and foreign jurisdictions the result would be […]

AREA OF LAW Wills and Succession Family Law Marriage & Divorce
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FORMAT Publications
FILE fr072.pdf

November 1, 1994

The Domestic Relations Act (DRA) – Phase 1. Family Relationships: Obsolete Actions, Final Report 65


With the changes in attitude toward marriage and family that have occurred over past decades many provisions of the Domestic Relations Act have become outmoded. This report recommends the abolition of six obsolete matrimonial actions: restitution of conjugal rights, judicial separation, damages in tort for adultery, enticement or harbouring a spouse; damages in tort for harbouring of a child, damages in contract for breach of a promise of marriage, and jactitation of marriage. This report also recommends […]

AREA OF LAW Children Family Law Marriage & Divorce
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FILE fr065.pdf

March 29, 1993