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Family Law Update: Ontario Court of Appeal Ruling on COVID-19 Vaccinations for children

Updated: Feb 25, 2023

The Ontario Court of Appeal has recently allowed an appeal by a parent who wanted their children vaccinated against COVID-19.

In the Court below, the judge hearing the motion denied a request by one of the parents to make the vaccination decision on behalf of their child. However, on appeal, the Ontario Court of Appeal held that the motion judge made several errors in reaching his decision and wrongly placed the burden on the parent that wanted the child to be vaccinated to prove that the child should receive the vaccine.

The Ontario Court of Appeal found that when one of the parties seeks medical treatment for a child using a medication approved by Health Canada, the burden of proof will be on the opposing party to explain why the child should not receive the treatment. As a result, the Ontario Court of Appeal overturned the decision of the motion judge and granted the parent wanting the child to be vaccinated the sole decision-making authority to do so.

* Please note that the above description is for general information purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice, as your specific situation may differ and require individual attention.*

For more information on your specific situation contact one of our litigation lawyers by booking a consultation online at, emailing us at, or reaching us by phone at 416-512-2529, and we would be happy to arrange a consultation in order to assist you.

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