Angie Sadler

Angie Sadler

Angie is a lawyer, accredited family mediator and parenting coordinator. Her professional experience and extensive legal, mediation and arbitration training have allowed her to create a practice which emphasizes mutually acceptable resolutions that are thoughtful and support healthy relationships.

Angie recognizes and appreciates the emotional and financial burden a separation can have on her clients and children. Her focus is on providing clients with the tools to negotiate arrangements that cater to the unique needs of each family and advance the best interests of children.

Angie is a member of the Law Society of Ontario (LSO), the Ontario Association of Family Mediation (OAFM) and the ADR Institute of Canada (ADRIC).

Sana Khokhar

Sana Khokhar

Sana is a compassionate family lawyer. Her practice encompasses all areas of family law including divorce, custody and access, child and spousal support, division of property, complicated financial issues, separation agreements, and domestic contracts including religious marriage contracts. Although Sana encourages her clients to resolve issues through the negotiation and settlement process, she has litigation experience and regularly appears before the Superior Court of Justice and the Ontario Court of Justice.

Sana has a special interest in domestic violence prevention, and she is a board member for Brave Beginnings, a not for profit organization that seeks to reintegrate women subject to domestic violence back into society.

Sana is a member of the Family Lawyer’s Association of Ontario, and the Peel-Halton Collaborative Family Law Group.

Sana is fluent in Urdu, Hindi, and Punjabi.

Family Law Information

Family Law Information

This page includes general information on various family law topics:

If you have any questions, contact us today.


There are three types of custody: joint custody, sole custody and shared custody. Generally, the non-custodial parent is entitled to have access to the child or children.

Child Support and Extraordinary Expenses

The non-custodial parent is required to pay periodic monthly child support in accordance with the Federal Child Support Guidelines tables. The Guidelines table indicate how much the non-custodial parent is required to pay the custodial parent for child support, based on the non-custodial parent’s gross annual income and the number of children.

In addition to the basic amount of child support, both parents are required to contribute to the child’s or children’s extraordinary expenses in proportion to their incomes. Extraordinary expenses are outlined in section 7 of the Guidelines. They include childcare (required in order for the custodial parent to be employed) and children’s educational expenses.

Spousal Support

Guidelines for spousal support are still being developed. In the meantime, spousal support is determined on a case-by-case basis. Lawyers and judges refer to reported cases that have similar facts, and they consider the parties’ financial statements to determine a fair amount of spousal support.

Property Division and Net Family Property Equalization

Each of the parties must prepare a sworn financial statement (discussed below) that lists all assets and liabilities, as of the date of marriage, the date of separation and the date of the financial statement. The lawyer for each party will calculate each party’s net family property, meaning net worth, on the separation date.

The separation date, which is also referred to as the valuation date, is important for two reasons:
1. You must be separated for a period of at least one year to be eligible for a divorce judgment.
2. The separation date is the date upon which your net family property is calculated.

The net family property takes into account the assets and liabilities you had on your date of marriage, and any excluded property such as property received by way of gift or inheritance.

Net family property equalization means that the party with the greater net family property pays the party with the lesser net family property half of the difference between the two parties’ net family properties.

Property division is the physical division of household furnishings, motor vehicles, real estate, etc., between the parties.

If there are joint assets that are to be kept by one party, that party is generally required to buy the other party’s half of the joint asset at fair market value. Generally, any such buy-outs occur after the net family property equalization is calculated, and the buy-out amount is added or subtracted from the net family property equalization amount.

Separation Agreements

A separation agreement is a global settlement of all issues. It is negotiated between the parties through their respective solicitors.

Financial Statements

It is important that both parties accurately prepare and exchange financial statements at the early stages of the negotiation of the separation agreement. Your solicitor requires the full financial disclosure of both you and your spouse to properly advise you of your rights and obligations in all respects of the global settlement. You should not sign a separation agreement without the exchange of sworn financial statements from both parties.

Litigation Process

Litigation (going to court) may be necessary to resolve issues between the parties, when the parties are unable to amicably reach a global settlement, or when one party is unreasonable or uncooperative.

The litigation process starts with an application. The respondent has 30 days to file and serve an answer. The respondent may make claims against the applicant, and the applicant will have 10 days to file a reply.

Except in the case of an emergency, such as if one party is denying the other party access to their children, the first court appearance is the case conference. At the case conference, both parties and their solicitors present their positions to a judge, who is not the same judge who will hear any part of the application. The objective of the case conference is to encourage the parties to settle all of the issues or at least narrow down the issues. The documentation and submissions in and for the case conference are without prejudice and will not affect any other aspect of the litigation if a settlement is not reached.

During the course of an action, there are likely several issues that must be resolved on an interim basis prior to the trial, such as support and custody. These issues are dealt with by way of a motion. One party initiates a motion by serving and filing a notice of motion and supporting affidavit material. The responding party will also file an affidavit. Motions can be done on fairly short notice, even within a few days.

Once all court documents are filed, the parties may conduct questioning of the opposite party. The parties’ lawyers will arrange for a mutually agreeable location, date and time for this. Each party will be questioned under oath by the lawyer of the opposite party.

Once the questioning of each party is complete and all undertakings to provide further information and/or documents are complied with, the action can proceed to the pre-trial stage.

Usually, the applicant’s lawyer will serve and file a formal notice that the matter is ready for trial, called a notice of readiness for trial. A pre-trial conference is then scheduled. The parties and their lawyers appear before a judge, who will not be the trial judge. The pre-trial conference is a final effort to encourage the parties to settle the issues, or at least narrow down the issues as much as possible.

If the action is not settled at the pre-trial conference, the parties proceed to trial. Witnesses may be called to present evidence. Various documents which have been made exhibits in the action are presented. Each party can question witnesses called by the other party. Transcripts from the questioning may also be referred to. Once all the evidence has been presented and the lawyers have made closing arguments, the judge will make his or her judgment.

Generally, the winning party may be awarded costs. The losing party will pay some or all of the winning party’s legal fees and disbursements.

Uncontested Divorce

uncontested divorce picture

An uncontested divorce proceeding is one in which your only claim is for a divorce order. This often happens with marriages that are short, and marriages where there are no children or property disputes.  One of the biggest differences between contested and uncontested divorces is the time it takes to become finalized. Uncontested divorces will usually go through relatively quickly.  Also, an uncontested divorce does not require a trial, discovery, or other time consuming legal procedures. That means that legal fees will be much less expensive* in an uncontested divorce than a contested divorce.

For couples who have children, it is normally recommended that the parties first negotiate a separation agreement outlining settlement terms with respect to all issues, such as custody, access, child support, section 7 special or extraordinary expenses, spousal support, net family property equalization and property division. When that is done, one party or both parties jointly may file an application for divorce (simple) on an uncontested basis. Alternatively, a divorce order may be obtained within a contested divorce application, in which a claim for divorce is one of many issues.

*An uncontested divorce is a flat-fee service. Please call/email us today to receive our “Frequently Asked Questions on Uncontested Divorce” article and to learn more about our uncontested divorce service.

Litigation/Contested Divorce

Contested Divorce

When a couple divorces, there are usually a host of decisions that need to be made. These may relate to issues including asset and debt division, spousal support/alimony, child support, custody and visitation, and other matters. If there are one or more significant matters that the couple cannot agree on themselves, it is a contested divorce. A divorce may start out as contested, but then become uncontested as the parties work out disagreements.

Divorce Litigation

Divorce litigation is method of divorce dispute resolution. This process involves submitting issues to family court in order to resolve them. Families will often choose litigation if they cannot reach an agreement through other divorce options.

We recognize that litigation is a last resort. Family law is unique and different from other litigation areas because, more often than not, you are required to continue communicating with your spouse after litigation is concluded. We try to minimize post-separation problems in order to maintain as civil and positive a relationship with your ex-partner or spouse and children as possible. We have extensive experience in making applications and motions, including applications and motions to vary and challenge existing agreements or court orders. We have been on both sides of litigation disputes and are experienced in guiding and defending clients in court proceedings.

Mediation & Arbitration

When partners separate or divorce, they must negotiate how to divide their assets and responsibilities (such as custody of children). Whenever possible, we recommend that our clients try to do this through mediation and arbitration.

Mediation and arbitration are forms of alternative dispute resolution, which is much less adversarial than the court process. It promotes amicable co-parenting and communication after the parties’ separation and divorce. We attend mediation with our clients and represent them at arbitration.

At Nachla Law, we encourage our clients to engage the services of a mediator/arbitrator to assist them in reaching a global settlement or at least narrowing their outstanding issues. Dorisa Nachla has represented clients at mediation and arbitration proceedings since her call to the bar in 1998.

We also provide independent legal advice on memorandums of understanding and prepare separation agreements for clients who have attended mediation on their own without a lawyer.

Collaborative Law

collaborative law picture

“We can’t solve our problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them”
Albert Einstein

In 2011 we became certified in collaborative law.  Collaborative law or collaborative divorce is a way to help the parties come to an agreement about matters related to the divorce. In a collaborative divorce both parties are represented by their own counsel, and the goal is to come to an agreement that both parties can live with rather than vying with each other to “win” or go to court.

We strongly encourage our clients to attempt to settle matters amicably and expediently, when possible. We find that when the parties to a separation or divorce reach a settlement on their own terms, the domestic contracts they create are much more comprehensive and longer-lasting than court orders imposed upon them by a judge in a zero-sum setting. If the parties can settle most of the issues, the need to arbitrate or litigate is limited to only a few remaining issues. This reduces the conflict and cost significantly.

Sometimes, there are circumstances when amicable resolutions aren’t possible. We have extensive experience in advocating for our clients when necessary.

Check out the two-minute video below to learn more about the Collaborative Process.

“A Peaceful Divorce – The Power & Promise of Collaborative Family Law” Video

Written and produced by Rick Green and Ava Green in collaboration with with the Peel Halton Collaborative Family Law Practice Group

“A Peaceful Divorce” is designed for couples who are facing divorce and for lawyers who are considering expanding beyond traditional existing models. The video provides an overview and some profound insights into what makes the collaborative family law (CFL) process so a transformative experience.

“A Peaceful Divorce” emphasizes the holistic approach of collaborative law by clearly laying out the roles of the lawyers, other team members and, of course, the couple themselves. A number of financial professionals, family professionals and life coaches reveal how the CFL team approach saves time and money, and keeps the process moving by empowering everyone involved. The video offers a concise look at the logistics of the process, including the agreements that are made going in. It illustrates how CFL offers an opportunity to transform the process of divorce and tailor it to suit each family’s unique situation.

Domestic Contracts

Cohabitation Agreements, Marriage Contracts and Separation Agreements

We have extensive experience in preparing, negotiating and providing independent legal advice on separation agreements, marriage contracts (also called prenuptial agreements) and other domestic contracts.

Domestic contracts, especially separation agreements, should contain all terms relating to your global settlement, including custody, access, child support, section 7 special or extraordinary expenses, spousal support, net family property equalization and property division.

Separation Agreements

Family law is different than other areas of law or litigation, in that you and your partner or spouse may be required to co-exist and communicate after the proceedings are concluded. This may be because you have children together, and you are required to communicate about parenting issues, discuss major decisions regarding the children, and cooperate on financial support of the children.

If possible, you should attempt to settle your issues amicably and expediently in a domestic contract, rather than have the final determination of the issues imposed upon you by a judge in court. In our experience, domestic contracts are much more comprehensive than court orders. Also, when the parties themselves determine the terms of their agreement on issues such as parenting plans and property division, they tend to be happier with the results, and the agreement terms are much more sustainable in the long run. Ultimately, the goal is to remain a family, although that family is restructured and living in separate homes.

As your lawyers, we’ll help you achieve that goal through an out-of-court settlement. That said, we are adept at assessing matters quickly, and we understand that in some situations, an out-of-court settlement is not possible. We are equally experienced in advocating for our clients in the court process, and we are prepared to do so when necessary.

Cohabitation Agreements and Marriage Contracts

Cohabitation agreements and marriage contracts (prenuptial agreements) are becoming more common, particularly when one of the parties has been divorced before and/or has children from a previous relationship. These agreements, made before or during marriage, allow you to set out in a contract how you will divide your property in the event of a relationship breakdown, or if one of you passes away. You can make these arrangements amicably and fairly, and rely upon them in the event of a marriage breakdown or death.

Most of the time, when partners or spouses separate and they do not have a cohabitation agreement or marriage contract, a global settlement of all issues is negotiated and set down in a separation agreement.

Free Consultation

Free Consultation

We offer a FREE 15-minute initial phone consultation, during which we’ll answer your questions and help you determine if we are the right fit for your needs.

We also offer a 30-minute initial consultation and/or a one-hour initial consultation. If you wish to retain our services, we will credit your first invoice an amount equivalent to the initial consultation fee, effectively making your initial consultation FREE.

Please call our office at 905-290-1965 or email if you have any questions and to schedule an initial consultation with one of our lawyers.  We look forward to serving you.

Maria Benderskaya

Maria Benderskaya

Licensed Paralegal/Notary Public

Maria (Marsha) Benderskaya graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Commerce in Russia. Maria graduated with Honours from the Paralegal Communications Program at Everest College in 2009 and obtained her Paralegal License with the Law Society of Ontario in 2010. Maria joined Nachla Law Office in 2012, and she obtained her Notary Public designation from the Law Society of Ontario in 2020. Maria works in the areas of Real Estate, Wills and Estates, and is available at the main office location at 242 Kerr Street in Oakville. Maria is fluent in Russian, which is an asset to the firm and its clients.