Inventory of Government-Based Family Justice Services

Custody and Access Assessments (Saskatchewan)

Province/Territory
Saskatchewan

Type of service
Family Court Services

Services offered
Staff social workers or contract assessors prepare custody and access assessments upon court order. These reports provide independent, written information to the court and the parties on the issues of custody and access. There are two types of custody and access assessments: a specific assessment and a full assessment. A “specific” assessment addresses a specific issue, such as what parenting arrangements are in the best interests of the child. A “full” assessment is more comprehensive, and surveys a broad range of information about the family. In both situations, the assessor will interview the child and the parents and / or observe the child while in each parent’s care. Reports include the assessor’s recommendations to the court on parenting arrangements.

Pilot or ongoing service
Ongoing service

Department responsible
Ministry of Justice

How to access this service
When custody and access assessments are ordered, it is usually at a pre-trial conference. The parties or their counsel can also apply to the court for an assessment to be ordered.

Location(s)
All Queen's Bench judicial centres, which include Battleford, Estevan, Melfort, Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Regina, Saskatoon, Swift Current, and Yorkton.
[ Service(s) offered ]

Language(s)
English. Other languages as required.

Publications/information
A pamphlet describing Custody and Access Assessments, and providing contact information, is available in all Queens Bench court houses in the province. See also: http://www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/births-deaths-marriages-and-divorces/separation-or-divorce/custody-and-access-to-children

Costs
If the court orders the assessment, there is usually no charge unless the judge orders one or both of the parties to pay all or part of the costs.

Governing legislation/legislative authority
The authority for a court to order a custody and access assessment is found in s. 97 of The Queen's Bench Act, 1998(PDF). See: http://www.publications.gov.sk.ca/details.cfm?p=807

Authority for ordering an assessment without the consent of the parties is also found in Rule 191 (16) of the Queen's Bench Rules of Saskatchewan. See: http://www.publications.gov.sk.ca/details.cfm?p=2153

Contact person(s)
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