What Every Father Should Know about Child Custody in Canada
Father and child

What Every Father Should Know about Child Custody in Canada

Fathers in Canada have just as much right to child custody as mothers do. In fact, the Canadian government has put into place several initiatives to help ensure that fathers are given equal consideration in custody cases.

The first and most important thing to understand is that the term used in Canadian family law is “parenting order.” A parenting order is a court order that sets out the rights and responsibilities of each parent with respect to their child.

There are two main types of parenting orders in Canada:

1) Sole custody: This type of order gives one parent the right to make all of the major decisions about their child’s life, such as decisions about their education, health care, and religious upbringing. The other parent still has access to their child but does not have a say in how they are raised.

2) Joint custody: This order gives both parents the right to make significant decisions about their child’s life. Both parents must consult with each other and come to an agreement on decisions such as those about their education, health care, and religious upbringing.

It is important to note that, in Canada, there is a presumption in favour of joint custody. That means that unless there are extenuating circumstances, the court will assume that joint custody is in the child’s best interests.

Extenuating circumstances that may lead the court to award sole custody to one parent include:

  • One parent has a history of violence or abuse
  • One parent has a substance abuse problem
  • One parent is unable to care for the child due to mental health issues

If you are a father seeking custody of your child, you must speak to a lawyer about your options. The law is complex, and your case’s outcome will depend on your situation’s specific facts.

The Impact of Father’s Rights on Child Custody

Fathers’ rights have been a contentious issue in family law for many years. The impact of fathers’ rights on child custody is complex, and there is no one-size-fits-all answer. 

Fathers’ rights vary depending on the jurisdiction and are constantly evolving. In some cases, fathers may have minimal rights regarding child custody, while in others, they may have significant privileges.

The impact of fathers’ rights on child custody can be positive and negative. On the one hand, fathers’ rights can ensure that fathers are more involved in their children’s lives. That can be beneficial for both the fathers and the children. On the other hand, fathers’ rights can also lead to conflict, harming children’s well-being.

The issue of fathers’ rights is complex, and there is no easy answer. Fathers’ rights need to be considered on a case-by-case basis, considering each family’s individual circumstances. Still, both parents must be represented well in court and have an equal chance of getting custody rights.


It is important to note that fathers do have rights when it comes to child custody in Canada. While the courts may give preference to the mother in some cases, many factors will be considered when deciding custody. Fathers should, therefore, not hesitate to assert their rights and seek legal advice if they feel they are not being given the consideration they deserve.

Need a child custody lawyer in Abbotsford to fight for your rights as a father? Pathfinder Law is a professional firm that provides various legal services to clients in Abbotsford and other parts of British Columbia. The firm’s services include family law, civil litigation, construction law and builders liens, employment law, wills and estates, and business law services. Contact us to learn how we can help you.

Disclaimer – The information contained herein is of a general nature. It is not intended to be legal advice and it is not intended to address the exact circumstances of any particular individual or entity. You should not rely on or act upon such information without receiving appropriate professional advice and without a thorough examination of your particular situation.