About Lisa Sharp
A parent of four children and a step-mom to three children, I became a lawyer in 2005, after 15 years working with children and youth. I offer a welcoming environment at my office to all families and have worked with families led by lesbian, gay, straight and transgendered parents.
Some parents have to develop complex strategies to be able to have a family. Whether you are a single person who wants to have a child using donated ova and/or sperm, or a couple that needs some assistance through technology, it is important to have a donor agreement or gestational carrier agreement in place in order to avoid problems in the future with respect to legal parentage.
Sponsorship of Spouse or Children
Some Canadians meet their spouses through travel, work overseas or through online dating. They may wish to bring their new spouses and children to Canada so they can all be together as a family. I can help to make this happen.
There are some situations where couples have not been permitted to marry or adopt children in their home countries. Once these families have moved to Ontario, it is possible to arrange for the adoption of children by step-parents in same-sex couples. I can assist with this process.
I believe that parents can work together in raising their children even after separation, so long as there is a relationship of mutual respect. My focus is on making sure your children’s needs are being met. This may be achieved by recommending counseling for parents and children, in order to help them get through the trauma of separation.
Another way to ensure success is to have grandparents or other family members involved as advocates for your children, so long as they can remain calm and stay out of any conflict between the parents.
Mediation can help to ensure that everyone has a voice at the table, when sorting out issues such as custody, access and support. Believe it or not, most issues can be worked out with a good attitude and open mind.
Sadly, about 10% of family cases end up in court, usually because one or both persons are not able to act reasonably. Even in court, I will always try to work out a fair agreement, with the help of court personnel to reach this objective. I have successfully represented parents who want to move to another jurisdiction, and I have also prevented parents from moving to other
jurisdictions when it was not in the best interest of the children.