When parents are no longer living together important decisions about how to continue to care for their children must be made. The basic questions that need to be decided are where the children will live, when they will spend time with each parent and how decisions about the children will be made. Parents who are no longer living together may reach an agreement on these matters or they can ask the court to decide.

There are laws that set out what the court will and will not consider when deciding custody and access. In Saskatchewan both The Children’s Law Act and the Divorce Act deal with custody and access. The Divorce Act only applies to married couples. However, while the laws may differ, the same principles apply to child-related issues regardless of whether the parents of a child are married or not. Understanding these principles can help parents reach their own agreement. Understanding these principles will also help parents who need to go to court decide what to ask for and how to best explain their reasons to the court.

For information about making an agreement or going to court for a court order see Resolving Disputes.