Family Law Services


When going through a separation or divorce, choosing the right process to manage the resolution of the various issues involved is extremely important. Each process is unique and can have a significant effect on the outcome, the level of conflict involved, and the length and cost of the process.

At Bortolussi Family Law, our family lawyers are trained in a variety of alternative dispute resolution processes, including negotiation techniques, mediation, arbitration, and collaborative law, as well as litigation. Our insight into each method enables us to recommend the best possible process for each client’s situation. While we often suggest taking a more collaborative approach when possible, we are also highly skilled litigators when going to court is necessary.

Family law often involves written contracts and agreements, which can be implemented at any point of a relationship, from beginning to end. Prenuptial agreements such marriage contracts, and cohabitation agreements allow couples to proactively plan and prepare for potentially contentious issues should the relationship break down. Compromising, acting equitably and agreeing on important issues such as property division and support, is significantly easier to do when a couple is happily in love. While anticipating the possibility of a relationship breakdown may seem unpleasant, it’s essentially the same as taking out an insurance policy to protect against a future possibility. Should the relationship come to an end later, having an agreement in place can save a lot of time, conflict, and expense.

Our family and divorce lawyers also assist clients with more unique forms of domestic agreements, such as paternity agreements, and fertility law contracts. If you plan to engage the services of a third party when growing your family, a well-designed contract is essential to avoiding future legal conflicts. Our lawyers will work with you to ensure the contract reflects your specific situation, and that your interests are effectively secured.


There are numerous ways to resolve family law disputes, and the right choice for each client will largely depend on their individual circumstances. At Bortolussi Family Law, we take the time to hear each client’s specific goals and understand the family dynamics before recommending the best path forward. No matter which option is chosen, our team has the experience to effectively advocate for our client.

Our firm boasts two trained family arbitrators, an accredited family mediator (OAFM), and two lawyers trained in Collaborative Family Law Practice. Our lawyers are skilled litigators with considerable experience arguing cases before a judge.

At Bortolussi Family Law, we represent clients in all manners of dispute resolution, including:

Family Law Litigation 

As family law lawyers in practice for several decades, our firm has considerable litigation experience. Litigation can sometimes have the effect of enhancing existing discord between the parties and it can also be more costly, and time-consuming, than other options. Importantly, all financial and other information about you and your family is open to the public to read. Proceedings in the courtroom itself are also open to the public.

However, in some cases, litigation is the most effective option. For example, for clients facing a situation which presents insurmountable obstacles to negotiation and amicable resolution such as domestic violence, child abduction, and dissipation of assets to name a few, litigation may be the only way forward to getting a determination on the outstanding issues between the parties. When this is the case, we put our exceptional litigation skills to work for our clients.

Alternative Family Dispute Resolution Methods 

Couples who are separating are also free to settle and reorganize their own affairs as they please through various alternatives to court. Alternative methods of dispute resolution give the parties more control over the process and can be more efficient and less costly. Unlike litigation, where a judge has the power to make and impose decisions on you, most alternative methods allow you to make your own choices, with the guidance of family law professionals.

Mediation, Collaborative Family Law, and family arbitration are processes that allow parties to resolve their issues respectfully and with the assistance of legal representation and other professionals, when necessary, in a private setting. These processes allow you to maintain control and decision-making. We proudly have lawyers trained in each of the alternative dispute resolution processes. Our founder, Lorraine A. Bortolussi, developed the Family Law course curriculum in 2018 for the Certificate in Family Mediation program, York University, and was its inaugural instructor.


Family law contracts must be carefully drafted and precisely worded to effectively protect the interests of the parties. If you are looking to create a contract at any point in your relationship, our lawyers will review your circumstances, concerns, and goals in detail with you. From there, we draft a comprehensive agreement for you that is in accordance with all of the safeguards the law requires for an enforceable agreement. The basis of these domestic contracts is the financial disclosure of each party. The financial disclosure allows the lawyer for each of the parties to give a proper legal opinion about the terms of the agreement so that you can understand the nature and consequences of signing that binding domestic contract. Without the financial disclosure, a domestic contract can be set aside if challenged in the future.

If your partner has had an agreement drafted already, we provide independent legal advice, which means we carefully review the agreement and the financial disclosure exchanged to ensure you have a full appreciation of the contents before you sign and the consequences to you in the future of signing.

Our family lawyers draft and review all types of domestic agreements, including:

  • Marriage Contracts – commonly referred to as prenuptial agreements or prenups, marriage contracts allow a legally married couple to predetermine many family issues should the relationship break down in the future.
  • Cohabitation Agreements – like marriage contracts, allow a common law couple to establish clear guidelines for most family matters in the event of a future separation. A cohabitation agreement becomes a marriage contract should the couple marry after signing.
  • Separation Agreements – created by a couple at the end of the relationship and sets out the terms with respect to the many issues that arise on separation including all financial, parenting and support issues.
  • Paternity Agreements – allow non-spouses to enter into an agreement specific to support and parenting arrangements with respect to their child.
  • Fertility Law Agreements – can be used to establish parental rights, or to set boundaries, in various fertility situations, such as surrogacy or sperm donation.


At Bortolussi Family Law, our divorce lawyers are dedicated to ensuring every client makes the best choice when it comes to their dispute resolution process. We listen to your goals and provide thoughtful advice for your most ideal path forward. We are adept at managing every type of family dispute process and will represent your interests to the very best of our ability, no matter which option you choose.

We will also protect your interests in a variety of domestic and family contracts, whether you are facing a new phase of life, or ending a relationship. We further provide detailed contract review of agreements created elsewhere, to make sure you have a full appreciation of what you are signing.

No matter how complex your matter, our team can manage it effectively to obtain an optimal result. To discuss your circumstances and learn about the options available to you, please reach out to us online or by phone at 416-987-3300.

“Bortolussi Family Law have helped me through one of the most difficult times in my life with comfort and poise. Their qualities are admirable and calming and helped me remain grounded and focused. 5/5” Daniela

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