How Do I Stop Defending a Family Law Action in the Supreme Court?

From Clicklaw Wikibooks

If you are a respondent, you may want to end your defence to a court proceeding. If you have filed a Counterclaim, you may want to stop that claim as well.

This often happens where a settlement has been reached.

To stop defending a court proceeding, you must file a Notice of Withdrawal in Form F40, and deliver a copy of the filed form to everyone else named in the action. This will allow the claimant to proceed as if no Response to Family Claim had ever been filed, and possibly apply for a default judgment.

To stop a claim against a claimant and completely abandon an action, you must file a Notice of Discontinuance in Form F39, and deliver a copy of the filed form to everyone else named in the action.

The forms are available online. See the Supreme Court Forms section.

While there is no fee charged to file a Notice of Discontinuance or Notice of Withdrawal, Rule 11-4(4) says that the claimant may be entitled to claim their court costs of the action up to the date of withdrawal or discontinuance.

For more information

You can find more information about Supreme Court procedure in the chapter Resolving Family Law Problems in Court within the section Replying to a Court Proceeding in a Family Matter.


This information applies to British Columbia, Canada. Last reviewed for legal accuracy by Thomas Wallwork, May 9, 2017.


Creativecommonssmall.png JP Boyd on Family Law © John-Paul Boyd and Courthouse Libraries BC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Licence.
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