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Kathryn L. Smithen is licensed to practise law as a Barrister and Solicitor in the Province of Ontario. She operates a boutique law firm offering a broad range of legal services specific to family law.

Kathy, to her friends and family, is divorced and a single mother of a university-aged student who is in a Masters program. Kathy returned to university as a mature student at the age of 33 after separating from her husband. She graduated from the School of Journalism at Ryerson University where she earned a Bachelor of Journalism degree (Broadcast Major) in June of 2002. She completed her legal training at Osgoode Hall Law School, graduating at the age of 46 in June of 2008 with a Bachelor of Laws degree. In late 2009, she converted that degree to a Juris Doctor. She is a recent call to the Bar of Ontario but has a great deal of experience in family law as both a student and a litigant in contentious matters in the Superior Court of Justice.

Kathy’s training provides her clients with an advocate who has strong writing and research skills. She is personable, supportive and as comfortable speaking on a one-on-one basis with clients as she is with making submissions on their behalf at any level of court in Ontario. Her oral and written submissions are thorough, powerful and well-thought out.

During her law school studies, Kathy worked as a volunteer student under the supervision of Advice Counsel with Pro Bono Students Canada in the Family Law Project located in both the Ontario Court of Justice and the Superior Court of Justice in Brampton and Toronto. In this work, Kathy assisted self-represented litigants preparing court documents including affidavits, motions, variations of child support and detailed financial statements. She also prepared ex-parte motions where there were emergencies involving children. Kathy worked in the summer of 2007 for Legal Aid Ontario developing a detailed pamphlet of resources for self-represented litigants in the family courts in Brampton.

For eight years (some of which were during law school), Kathy represented herself in her own family law matters, including 26 interim motions, a four-week Superior Court trial and 3 leave to appeal motions in the Divisional Court. More recently, she has been involved in enforcement proceedings as a support recipient who has withdrawn from the Family Responsibility Office. Kathy brings this practical experience to the table as a family law professional.

Kathy is a member in good standing with the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Ontario Bar Association, the Family Lawyer's Association, the Advocates’ Society, the Toronto Lawyers’ Association and the Women’s Law Association of Ontario.

Photography done by Irina Fortey.

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