After a family law agreement has been signed, you or the other person may want to enforce it because the agreement isn’t being followed. Or, you may want to change it because circumstances have changed for you, them, or your child. If you and the other person can’t agree about changing the agreement, you can make a court application. The court can set aside (cancel) all of the agreement, or it can set aside the part of the agreement that has to change and replace it with a court order.
Before you can apply to enforce or set aside (cancel) part or all of your agreement, it needs to be filed with the court. Either you or the other person can file a written agreement about parenting arrangements, contact with a child, child support, and/or spousal support.
Filing an agreement is simple:
- Make a copy of your signed agreement.
- Fill out a Request to File an Agreement (Form 26)
Tick the box that applies to whatever part of the agreement you want to enforce or set aside. You can tick more than one box. Talk to duty counsel if you're not sure. Tick:
- section 15 if you've agreed to get a parenting coordinator to help you
- section 44 (3) if your agreement includes parenting arrangements
- section 58 (3) if your agreement includes contact with a child
- section 148 (2) if your agreement includes child support
- section 163 (3) if your agreement includes spousal support
- Take the copy of the agreement and the form to the Family Court registry at the courthouse.
You must file your agreement at the registry that is:
- where an existing case between you is filed, or
- closest to where your child lives most of the time, if the case involves a child, or
- closest to where you live, if the case doesn't involve a child.
- The registry clerk will check your agreement and stamp it with the court seal. If a court action has already been started, they will put the agreement into your court file. If no court action has been started, the registry will stamp a court file number on your agreement when you file it. This has the effect of starting a family law case.
You can now take steps to enforce or set aside part or all of your agreement, or just leave the agreement in the court file and wait until later. See How do you change an agreement? for more information about this.
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