In a matrimonial dispute, what is the obligation of parties to ensure that their affidavits do not contain hearsay, emotional reactions, or inflammatory statements?

British Columbia, Canada


The following excerpt is from M.A.V. v. E.K.M., 2016 BCSC 594 (CanLII):

In a number of decisions, this court has commented on the responsibility of parties to a matrimonial dispute to ensure that their affidavits do not contain hearsay, emotional reactions, embellishments, or inflammatory statements. For example, Justice Spencer said in Creber v. Franklin, [1993] B.C.J. No. 890: …affidavits should state the facts only, without stooping to add the deponent’s descriptive opinion of those facts. It should be left to argument to persuade the trier of fact what view he or she should take of them. For counsel to permit affidavits to be larded with adjectives expressing an opinion about the conduct of the other side contributes nothing to the fact finding process. On the contrary, it does a disservice. It exacerbates existing ill feeling. It pads the file with unnecessary material and it wastes the court’s time. (para. 19)

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