Principles of Matrimonial Property Sharing: Alberta's New Act

  • Margaret A. Shone


Judicial practice in the division of property upon marriage breakdown led to remedial legislation in the form of Alberta's new Matrimonial Property Act. Interpretation of the new Act, which is limited in scope by its marriage breakdown focus and the provisions for contracting out, will become settled as the case law multiplies. The author discusses some of the issues which will have to be considered by any court in applying the legisla tion: its similarities with Acts in other Commonwealth countries; the meaning of the pro perty within the Act; the effect of the presumption of equal sharing; and possible inter pretations of the guiding factors set out in s. 8. The responsibility of ensuring that the Act is interpreted in remedial spirit is emphasized in conclusion.