Changes to Bill C-78, the Divorce Act, and what it means for social work


Webinar Presenters

Michael A. Saini, PhD, MSW, RSW, holds a doctoral degree in the field of social work. Since 2007, he has been tenured faculty member at the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work at the University of Toronto. He is currently an Associate Professor and holds the endowed Factor-Inwentash Chair in Law and Social Work and he is the Co-Director of the Combined J.D. and M.S.W. program with the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto.



Canada is in the midst of reforming its federal parenting laws and it is important that social workers are informed of these changes.  With Bill C-78 coming in effect in 2020, the Divorce Act will adopt child-centered parenting terminology; an evidence-informed definition and criteria for family violence in making parenting orders; and a comprehensive relocation scheme. Reforms will also include a non-exhaustive list of best interests of the child criteria, including criteria addressing voice of the child and Indigenous heritage. The reforms will also impose obligations on legal advisers and other family justice professionals to encourage out-of-court dispute resolution and child-focused resolutions. This workshop will provide an overview of the proposed changes, discuss the implications to research and practice, and address implementation issues for the field of social work.

The webinar will cover some of the following about Hoarding disorder:

  • To understand the substantive changes proposed to parenting laws in Canada
  • To explore the integration of family justice reform with best available research
  • To prepare social workers to assist families to navigate these parenting law reforms