Ottawa Accredited Family Mediator, Family Lawyer and Collaborative Family Lawyer

I have a wealth of experience — helping families successfully resolve disputes as a family lawyer since 1975, a family mediator since 1982 and a collaborative family lawyer since 2002.

Important Early Advice — Choose the Right Process — The Wrong Choice Can Make Things Worse

All cases are unique, but the most important early advice for most people is to encourage them to choose a process to resolve their family disputes that is respectful, compassionate and efficient.

My long-standing commitment to this approach has led me to a practice involving family mediation and collaborative family law. I work with clients who:

  • wish to work cooperatively and respectfully
  • are prepared to put their children's best interests before their own
  • can commit to working for the best outcome for the family as a whole
  • are looking for a win-win (not a win-lose) outcome
  • wish to preserve as much of the family resources as possible

The family mediation and collaborative family law processes referred to above make that possible. As you probably have heard, adversarial processes often make things worse — increasing the financial and emotional cost for all.

Helping my clients get through a challenging time in their lives in a civilized, respectful and efficient manner without making their situation worse — this is my passion.

Click here for more about Family Mediation or Collaborative Family Law.

What Matters to You

Regardless of what process you choose, when we meet, we will talk about your particular situation and discuss What Matters To You. This includes your legal rights and obligations as well as other important goals, personal concerns, expectations, hopes, priorities, values, etc. We find that focusing on what really matters to you and the best way to achieve this agenda will reduce the stress that you and your family will experience.

If you are separating, we may discuss:

  • Children: All decisions about children including decision-making and parenting schedules (often called "custody and access") and child support must be made in the children's best interests and according to established guidelines.
  • Finances: This includes division of property and setting up fair and reasonable support provisions for spouses and children.
  • Contracts: We deal with the negotiation and drafting of a variety of family law contracts, such as Separation Agreements, Cohabitation Agreements and Marriage Contracts. Where appropriate, we also provide Independent Legal Advice for contracts drafted by other lawyers.
  • Other professionals: Your unique situation may require the assistance of other experts, such as counsellors/therapists, appraisers/valuators, financial experts, parenting mediators or coordinators, etc., and we can involve them where necessary.

In addition to issues relating to separation and divorce, I also provide services dealing with organizational conflicts and elder mediation.

Contact John G. Goodwin

If you are experiencing a family separation or divorce, elder mediation, or organizational conflicts in Ottawa or the surrounding area, contact me at 613-236-0662 or fill out my online form to set up an appointment.