Barrister, Solicitor, and Mediator
Sonja was called to the bar in July 2005. She has practiced family law exclusively since approximately 2006. Sonja is a lawyer at Calgary Family Law Associates, an association of lawyers who practice mostly in the area of family law. Her office in Calgary’s Beltline.
Her philosophy is simple: inform and empower people to make the best decisions they can about their own family and their own affairs. Provide resources and tools to people so they can more clearly identify and attain their goals. She has found this is particularly helpful and effective in the area of family and child welfare law.
Sonja has extensive training in mediation, interest-based negotiation, litigation, and collaborative law. She is extensively involved in continuing legal education to stay current in the area of family law and child welfare law. This broad background allows Sonja to advise her clients at each step.
Sonja believes that family law is about family, not courtrooms, and it is her preference to assist her clients to settle most matters in the least emotionally damaging way – out-of-court.
However, she recognizes that sometimes litigation is inevitable, and is entirely comfortable as a litigator. Sonja has conducted many trials in Provincial Family Court, in the Court of Queen’s Bench, many arbitration hearings, and assisted at numerous Binding Judicial Dispute Resolution meetings. She has appeared at the Alberta Court of Appeal on a number of occasions.
- Divorce Act and Family Law Act Court applications, both in Provincial Family Court, the Court of Queen’s Bench, and the Court of Appeal.
- Separation Agreements;
- Cohabitation Agreements;
- Property Agreements;
- Child Support Claims;
- Spousal Support Claims;
- Enforcement of Parenting Time applications;
- Mobility applications;
- Parenting and Custody applications;
- Guardianship applications;
- Restraining Orders and Emergency Protection Orders;
- Responding to applications made by Children’s Services (Child Welfare) – for Supervision Orders, Temporary Guardianship Orders,
- Permanent Guardianship Orders;
- Representing Foster Parents in guardianship applications or disputes with Children’s Services;
- Representing children in custody applications, and in applications by Children’s Services.
- Representing First Nations in child welfare litigation.
Memberships and Affiliations:
- Law Society of Alberta
- Canadian Bar Association
- Child Welfare and Representation of Children – Co-founder and past co-chair, member of executive
- Family Law Section – member
- Civil Litigation Section – member
- Law Firm Management and Leadership – member
- Labour and Employment law – member
- Legal Representation of Children and Youth – roster lawyer since 2008
- Legal Aid Alberta Roster Representation Committee Member
- Dispute Resolution Officer, Court of Queen’s Bench
- Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, Board of Directors, Alberta Chapter
- Legal Education Society of Alberta, Editor, Practice Manual; past instructor and chairperson “Child Welfare Boot Camp”
- Association of Women’s Lawyers
- Past Volunteer lecturer / clinics
- Simon’s House Recovery Centre
- Chinook Learning
- YMCA Sheriff King Home
- Youville Recovery Centre
- Calgary Legal Guidance
- The Advocates’ Society, member
- Alberta Civil Trial Lawyers’ Association, member
- Legal Education Society of Alberta, Family Law Practice Manual, Editor, trial Chapter and Child Welfare Chapter, 2020
- The Collaborative Divorce Alberta Association (CDAA)
- The Canadian Bar Association Child and Youth Law National Executive Committee
- AJEFA – French-speaking Legal Professionals Association of Alberta
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