The Provincial Court of BC hears about half of all family matters in the province. Family Court helps families solve problems when children have been neglected or abused or when there are issues arising from a family breakup.
If a case deals with divorce, adoptions or the division of family property it would be heard in Supreme Court.
If a case involves the custody and guardianship of, or access to, or child support of children of separated parents, the case can be heard in either trial court.
If it involves child protection – where the state alleges children have been neglected or abused - then the case is only heard in Provincial Court.
Very few family cases go to trial. The large majority of family disputes get resolved by an agreement between the parties that is developed with the help of lawyers and encouraged by court resources such as parenting education courses, meetings with Family Justice Counsellors and mediation services.