I'M READY TO WORK WITH YOU.
Most of us hope we never have to see the inside of a courtroom. And cases involving your family and children, and where your very liberty is at stake, can be the most stressful of all.
With over twenty years of experience practicing law in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador, I am committed to making the process as fair, understandable and stress-free as possible.
My office is conveniently located in Burnside, but I look forward to traveling all over Nova Scotia to help you.
I accept certificates issued by the Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission, and referrals from several Employment Assistance Programs.
As well, my office offers Notary services, prepares Wills and Advance Health Care Directives, and can assist with preparing court documents for family, child-welfare and adoption proceedings.
Call me at (902) 497-1973 if you would like my help. I look forward to hearing from you.
Whether it's an uncontested divorce in which you've reached agreement on everything and just need someone to get you over the finish line, or if you haven't yet agreed on anything, I will help you resolve all of the outstanding issues and finalize the matter in court.
Child Custody and Access
Nothing is more important to you than your children, and nothing is more important to the court than their well-being. I will do my best to make sure their interests - and yours - are protected.
This is the child's right, not the parents. Whether the children are primarily in your care, if they live with the other parent or if you share custody, I will try to ensure the correct amount is ordered, taking into account the parties' incomes and the children's special expenses like child care.
The Department of Community Services, or Mi'kmaw Family and Children's Services, can take action in situations where children are determined to be in need of protection. With over two decades of experience representing parents in such cases, I will help you navigate what can be a frightening and intimidating situation, and to ensure you are treated reasonably and fairly by the authorities and the courts.
I also represent children when a Guardian ad Litem - that is, an adult who appears in court on their behalf and puts forward their opinions and concerns - is appointed.
If you have been charged with a criminal offence, my role is to review the evidence and the charges with you and, if you wish to contest the matter, to defend you in court to the greatest extent allowed by the law and by my professional obligations. You should not have to prove you are innocent, but the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty.
In cases where you have admitted to the offence and plead guilty, or have been convicted at trial, I can represent you at the sentencing hearing. Under these circumstances, I will strenuously argue for a reasonable sentence that takes your personal circumstances into account.
In some cases, where a person involved in a trial believes the judge made a mistake, he or she may ask that the matter be referred to a higher court to be reviewed.
I have handled several matters at the appeal level, representing parties asking that the original decision be overturned and those arguing that it should stand. Whichever side you're on, I am ready and willing to review your case and forcefully put forward your position before the appeals court.
Unbundled Legal Services
Sometimes, you may not want a lawyer to represent you in court, but do need one to give you some guidance and advice, and help you with drafting and reviewing legal documents. I am more than willing to offer this "behind the scenes" help to people who need it.
In addition to being a lawyer, I am a Notary Public for the Province of Nova Scotia. If you need a document notarized, I can do so.
Legal Aid Certificates
People who qualify for legal aid representation, but who cannot be represented by a staff lawyer because of a conflict of interest, may be allowed to retain a lawyer in private practice whose fees would be paid by the legal aid commission.
I started out as a legal aid lawyer, and have always committed to accepting legal aid certificates when my schedule and workload allow. If one has been issued to you, please contact my office and I will see if I can help.