Custody Battle Over Family Pet

It should come as no surprise then, that when couples separate, the question of who gets the dog, cat, or other family pet can be an emotional hot button.

In one reported case, Christopher Lewis Warnica took his claim for joint shared custody of a dog named Tuxedo who had been purchased from a local pound for $10.00 all the way to the Court of Appeal in Ontario.

Dog lovers may be shocked to discover the Court of Appeal felt there were more important issues for the court to consider. The Court relied on a section of The Family Law Act and dismissed the case as "... a waste of time, a nuisance ... an abuse of the court's process".

The court record does not reflect Tuxedo's take on the decision - he might well have had a bone to pick with their finding.

The bottom line is that since pets are viewed as property by the courts, (like a bag of pet food) issues of pet custody and access might better be brought to Small Claims Court.

Now, if the issue is who should pay for the bag of pet food, a family court might well allow a calculation for legitimate pet expenses such as dog food or even veterinary bills; it all depends on the facts of each case.

Lesson to be learned? It's important to choose the right law firm in family law custody cases. The Ross Firm has the experience and impressive results in family law to earn your trust.

Give us a call.

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