Unified Family Court, Management Response and Action Plan

Project Title: Summative Evaluation of the Unified Family Court

Responsibility Centre:

Conclusions Recommendations Management
Response
Action Plan Responsible
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Planned
Implementation
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Success
There is some evidence to suggest that the Unified Family Court model helps to resolve issues more efficiently; and it enables better access to a specialized bench of judges and FJS.

Lessons Learned
Client surveys associated with justice programs and that involve federal-provincial/ territorial relations require substantial planning prior to implementing an evaluation.

The complete disconnect between case files maintained by family justice service providers and the court registry files makes it very difficult to identify how parties proceed through the family justice system.

Timely resolution of issues and case complexity are problematic indicators that are influenced by a range of intervening factors that could not be sufficiently controlled for in the analysis.
Recommendation 1: It is recommended that the Department of Justice Canada disseminate the findings of this evaluation report and explore with stakeholders how the UFC model may better serve the complex and changing needs of the families experiencing separation or divorce. We agree with the conclusions and the recommendation. The Judicial Affairs Unit will share the evaluation report with other units within the Department, as well as with the provinces and territories and explore with stakeholders how the UFC model may better serve the complex and changing needs of the families experiencing separation or divorce. Director and General Counsel, Judicial Affairs Unit Following posting of the Report on the Justice website
Recommendation 2: It is recommended that the Department of Justice Canada work with the provinces and territories to collect data in a consistent manner so that a linkage can be made between FJS and court files and the development of a client survey for the unified courts across Canada. We agree with the conclusion and recommendation. The Judicial Affairs Unit will work with the Department's Research Divisions, Family Children and Youth Section and Committees in order to improve data collection, both in terms of creating linkages between the court files and FJS and in relation to the development of a client satisfaction survey. Director and General Counsel, Judicial Affairs Unit On-going
Recommendation 3: It is also recommended that the Department of Justice revise performance indicators related to case resolution times and case complexity in order to improve measurement capability. We agree with the recommendation. The Judicial Affairs Unit will work with colleagues in the Evaluation Division to review and revise as appropriate the performance indicators in the UFC RMAF. Director and General Counsel, Judicial Affairs Unit 2011-2012
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