Osuji & Smith
Schedule An Appointment Today. 403-283-8018

Alberta Legal Blog

Alberta town using real estate laws to crack down on AirBnb hosts

There is no question that the internet has changed the face of many industries. Among others, the new online service AirBnb has been at the centre of many conversations about the future of hospitality and real estate. In Canmore, Alberta, illegal vacation rentals are being targeted by the municipality under their Land Use Bylaw.

The Alberta town has received reports and complaints related to people renting out all or part of their homes on the website. Many homeowners are actually not allowed to do so under Land Use Bylaws in the area. The municipality wishes to educate homeowners on these laws and then proceed with enforcing them as necessary.

Child care, social media affect immigration and Syrian refugees

The topic of Syrian refugees was one of the top news stories of 2015. Their arrival in Alberta and across Canada sparked conversations on immigration in Canada, particularly for those seeking asylum. Following up on refugees' progress in cities is important for Canadians who wish to better understand the impact of these policies.

In Calgary, 3,800 refugees arrived during the harsh winter months. Besides the weather, new arrivals had to contend with the high cost of living and cultural challenges. Ninety percent of the refugees are learning English. Two thirds of them have obtained an Alberta driver's license. They often struggle to find a place in the community and workforce.

Mounties commander files employment discrimination claim

Leaving any job after many years of service will never be easy, especially if the circumstances of the termination leave a bitter taste. A former Royal Canadian Mounted Police commander of the Alberta detachment recently filed a claim against the police force, alleging discrimination linked to her gender and her mental health issues. She was in the employment of the police force for 24 years.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff was based with the RCMP near Edmonton. She claims to have been diagnosed with an addiction along with post-traumatic stress disorder in 2014. After receiving treatment in Calgary, she received graduated duties as part of a new assignment. However, she says she was then prevented from participating in any operational duties and alleges a permanent order to that effect was added to her personnel file.

Fatal personal injury kills biker when car fails to yield

Motorcyclists in Alberta will always be vulnerable on the busy city roads. When motorcycle riders are involved in crashes with automobiles, chances of survival are slim, and those who survive typically suffer serious personal injury. Even those who wear protective clothing and helmets do not have the protection of safety belts, air bags or the bodies of vehicles to protect them.

One such a tragic accident occurred in the city of Leduc on a recent Friday. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police report indicates that the call about the crash came in at about 1:30 p.m. Emergency crews rushed to the scene to find a motorcyclist trapped underneath a car. The critically injured biker was transported to a hospital. However, he succumbed to his injuries later that day.

Family law issues about the matrimonial home

When the marriage of an Alberta couple comes to an end, certain matters related to property division can give rise to disputes and contention. Under family law, treatment of the matrimonial home in which the spouses lived is not the same as other assets. Regardless of whose funds went toward the down payment and mortgage, once it has served as the family home, both spouses are regarded as equal owners of it.

The type of dispute that may arise came up in a question from a divorced man who purchased a home with his wife as co-signer. An inheritance from his parents took care of the down payment, and she made no contributions to the mortgage payments. She made no demands when they filed for divorce after 14 months. However, the man is now concerned that she might claim an equal share of the property -- especially because he had since managed to pay off the mortgage.

Family law: How can Skype and FaceTime benefit divorced families?

When parents in Alberta and elsewhere end their marriages, one of the biggest concerns for the parents who will leave the matrimonial home might be losing contact with the children. However, modern technology provides an answer with the availability of Skype, FaceTime and more. To help professionals in the mental health and family law fields understand the role these Internet programs can play in the post-divorce lives of parents, a social work professor in another state is conducting a study.

A survey is used to collect data from divorced or separated parents for the study of which the conclusion is expected to be available before the winter. The professor says both challenges and benefits will become clearer once the observed data -- which has never before been gathered -- is analyzed. The results are expected to show that the greatest value would be for circumstances in which one parent relocates to an area far away from the child. Using one of these online communication tools that allow face-to-face contact can help to maintain that vital parent-child relationship despite the distance between them.

Estate planning is for old and young, rich and poor

Some residents of Alberta may share in the common misconceptions that exist with relation to the planning of an estate. The biggest mistake people make is to think that they are much too young even to consider getting started -- believing it is something to deal with around retirement age. Another fallacy is that estate planning deals only with issues that arise after a person's death while the truth is that it can be extremely valuable even during life -- regardless of a person's level of wealth.

Consider a situation in which a person in his or her 20s or 30s suffers catastrophic injuries in an accident that renders him or her incapable of making financial or medical decisions. With proper estate plans in place, that person would have appointed medical and financial powers of attorney who can make these important decisions on his or her behalf -- even if it only temporary until recovery. A similar fate can befall any person at any age.

Cyclist claims driver's negligence caused personal injury

A Calgary parent says his quick reactions recently saved his life when the alleged actions of a negligent driver caused him to crash while he was cycling in the city. He reported the incident to police and showed them footage from a camera that was fitted to the rear of his bicycle. The man suffered serious personal injury, and police are investigating the incident.

The camera images only show the upside-down bike as it was spinning in the air, and the flying rider as he tumbled onto the roadway. However, although it does not show the alleged actions of the driver, the cyclist claims a motorist pulled onto the road directly ahead of him and then suddenly slammed on the vehicle's brakes. According to the bicyclist, the incident occurred shortly after 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 8, and the driver of the car drove away without stopping.

What can a victim of employment bullying do?

According to the Canada Safety Council, one in six people nationwide, including in Alberta, have been the victim of bullies in the workplace. Bullying involves the repeated negative behaviour of one person toward another in the workplace. The harm caused by employment bullying is typically more psychological than physical. It usually takes on a verbal form and is often well-disguised and difficult to recognise.

This behaviour can involve discrimination, sexual harassment and more. It often causes mental, financial and physical harm. It may include rudeness, disrespect and hostility along with abuse of power, intimidation and threats. Bullies are often supervisors, managers, colleagues or clients, and their behaviour can cause emotional damage that may affect the victim's work performance -- causing additional stress.

Where does postnuptial agreements fit into Alberta family law?

Prenuptial agreements have become more acceptable, and some Alberta residents who never signed marriage agreements before they got married may have questions about the potential advantages of postnuptial agreements. What are postnups and why would married couples sign them? Also, are they valid under the family law of Alberta?

As with a prenuptial agreement, the law requires such an agreement signed during the marriage to be voluntary. Because they are easier to challenge in court than prenuptial agreements, it might be wise for both parties to have legal representatives to provide counsel before signing such contracts. When it comes to the reasons for creating postnuptial agreements, they are varied. Some couples do it for business or financial reasons, while others use them as lifestyle agreements.

Contact Us For A Consultation

send us an e-mail

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an lawyer-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy