Categories: Opinion

EDITORIAL: Breaking up is hard to do

Pierre Elliot Trudeau once famously said, “The state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation.”

That was in reference to the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 1968-69, which decriminalized homosexuality, made way for abortion and contraception, regulated lotteries, gun possession and drinking and driving offences – a scenario we take for granted today.

In its latest attempt to poke its nose into our bedrooms, the province’s new Family Law Act will help protect those in common-law relationships if and when the romance dies.

While the new rules clarify the partners’ responsibility for their children, they also make division of assets a little easier, a move the government says will keep more unhappy couples out of court.

As with any change to the law, it’s the lawyers who will see the biggest benefit. People already living common-law and those thinking of shacking up with a romantic partner will now be drawing up cohabitation agreements – planning well beyond who gets the record collection when it’s over.

And while the new rules certainly close a number of loopholes in terms of spousal and child support, there will be unintended consequences, with potentially more at stake financially at the time of a break-up.

It’s only human nature to want what you have coming to you – even if it’s only because the government has said you deserve it. It’s this kind of thinking that might well lead more splitting couples to the courtroom than anticipated.

The new Act gives us all something to think about. Things like purchasing a new car, investing in real estate or RRSPs might best be done before emptying a drawer in your bureau for a new partner.

You might also want to think twice before moving in with someone who is going back to school and about to amass student debt  – because if you part ways, along with those old Neil Sedaka LPs  – you’ll get half of that too.

Editorial

Share
Published by
Editorial

Recent Posts

  • Home
  • Local News
  • News

Grave site at Ross Bay Cemetery vandalized overnight

Graffiti found on grave of Sir James Douglas

1 hour ago
  • Home2
  • News

Health officials confirm sixth COVID-19 case in B.C.

Woman remains in isolation as Fraser Health officials investigate

1 hour ago
  • Home2
  • News

Study says flu vaccine protected most people during unusual influenza season

Test-negative method was pioneered by the BC Centre for Disease Control in 2004

2 hours ago
  • Entertainment
  • Home
  • Local Entertainment

Celtic Illusion brings ‘sensational’ magic and dance to Victoria stage

Australian show makes Canadian debut

2 hours ago
  • Home
  • Local News
  • News

North Saanich man fears tougher moorage policies could cost him his home

Stewart Jackson has been living on a boat off Lillian Hoffar Park for about four years

2 hours ago
  • Community
  • Home

MLAs donate handbags with notes to inspire women in the workforce

Purse drive organized by charities Wear2Start and Dress for Success

2 hours ago