J K Hannaford Barristers


J K Hannaford Barristers is a boutique practice, focusing exclusively on family law litigation.


The firm was established in 2006 by Julie Hannaford, a seasoned litigator, who has been recognized as one of the leading family law lawyers in Canada. Since its inception, J K Hannaford Barristers has steadily grown its team of advocates, all of whom are dedicated to the practice of family law.


The firm provides advice and representation on all aspects of family law, including domestic contracts, property, support, custody and access and child protection. We are regularly retained to work on complex and high conflict family law matters.


We are proud to have a number of notable cases to our name, and we continue the hard work on behalf of all our clients.


J K Hannaford Barristers is defined not only by the hard work we do for our clients, but by a belief in honesty and candour – with our clients, with the courts and tribunals and with each other. We believe in providing our clients with clear and understandable explanations of the law, and in being candid about realistic outcomes. We believe in exploring less contentious ways to solve difficult problems that arise in the family law context, but when it is necessary we take up our clients’ cases in the courts.


Outside of our focus on the practice of law, the members at J K Hannaford Barristers lend their support to charitable causes, including the Barbra Schlifer Clinic, the Red Door Shelter and the Lawyers Feed the Hungry Program.

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Julie K. Hannaford


Julie Hannaford went to law school after graduate studies in English literature at the University of Toronto. Julie was a partner at a leading law firm, practising in the area of litigation until she formed J K Hannaford Barristers in 2006. Julie has published widely in family law, has conducted trials and appeals and has taught trial advocacy in the United States and Canada.


She holds memberships in the American Bar Association (Section of Litigation), the Canadian and Ontario Bar Association and the Advocates Society. She is a fellow of the International Academy of Family Lawyers (IAFL), and has served on a number of boards.

Charu Ruparelia


Charu is a partner at J K Hannaford Barristers. Dedicated to the pursuit of excellence and principled resolution in family law, Charu applies her experience to arrive at multifaceted approaches and solutions to complex problems.


Charu maintains a diverse practice, devoted to family law and dispute resolution. This includes advising and representing clients on support claims, division of property, custody and access claims and domestic contracts. Charu engages the intersection between business and valuation issues and works closely with chartered business valuators, accountants and financial planners.


Charu pivoted quickly into the practice of family law at J K Hannaford Barristers after her call to the Ontario Bar in 2011. She has had the privilege of being trained and mentored by the firm’s principal, Julie Hannaford. Charu has experience advocating for clients through negotiation, mediation, arbitration and at Court.

Lauren Degabriele


Family law is Lauren’s passion, and she prides herself on her tireless commitment to advocating for her client’s interests, while also supporting them through one of the most challenging periods of their lives.


Lauren represents clients in all aspects of divorce and separation, including property division, custody and access disputes, support claims, marriage contracts and cohabitation agreements. Lauren enjoys working on all types of family law matters, from complex financial issues, to high-conflict child-related disputes.


Lauren is skilled at advancing claims through the court process, and resolving matters through various methods of alternative dispute resolution, such as negotiation, mediation, and arbitration.


Lauren graduated from the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law in 2017, and she was called to the Ontario bar in 2018. Lauren completed her Masters at McGill University in 2013, and her bachelor’s degree from the University of Ottawa in 2012.

Angela Pagano


Hailing from an arts background, Angela spent many years performing in musicals on stages across Canada before shifting her focus to law. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Honours Psychology from York University, and graduated with her Juris Doctor from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law in 2018.


During her legal studies, Angela was a caseworker with Downtown Legal Services and an active participant in the Faculty of Law’s Competitive Mooting Program. She was a member of the Best Overall Team at the 2017 Walsh Family Law Moot, and received the award for Best Overall Advocate at the 2018 Sopinka Cup.


After completing her articles with J K Hannaford Barristers, Angela is thrilled to be returning to the firm as a new associate. She is set to be called to the Ontario Bar in June 2019.

Ibtisam Jemal


Ibtisam attended Osgoode Hall Law School after graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Toronto.


During law school, Ibtisam had the opportunity to participate at CLASP (Community Legal Aid Services Programme) as a caseworker before returning to the clinic in her second year to serve as a Division Leader in the Family Law division. At the clinic, Ibtisam was exposed to issues relating to child support, custody, access and spousal support. It was through this clinical experience that Ibtisam gained a passion for advocating on behalf of clients and reaching creative solutions to complicated issues. Ibtisam’s time at CLASP allowed her to explore and develop her interest in family law.


Ibtisam articled at J K Hannaford Barristers and will be returning to the firm as an associate. Ibtisam is expected to be called to the Bar in June 2019.

Carol Hutchison

Senior Law Clerk

Throughout my extensive years in family law, I have worked with many fine advocates. I began my career with Julie at Borden Ladner Gervais in the family law department, rapidly gaining experience preparing for and assisting at numerous court attendances and notable trials. I knew I had found my “calling” when I had a client with the last name of Love, divorced on Valentine’s Day!


Julie left BLG to start her own firm in 2006, and I subsequently joined the family law department at a midsize firm. In 2014, I circled back and joined Julie at her firm as senior law clerk. In 2015 I was granted the designation of Certified Expert in Family Law by The Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario, the first designation of its kind. In addition to the position of senior law clerk at J K Hannaford Barristers, I have also taken on the role of Manager Administration. This new position continues to challenge me, but provides a great sense of accomplishment. When not in the office, you can find me in my garden or on local hiking trails, and in the winter months, the snowshoe trails in the Collingwood area.

Jennifer Badio

Articling Student

Gabrielle McLaughlin

Summer Student

Grace Premachandran

Articling Student

Sheila M. Holmes


We congratulate Sheila Holmes and wish her well on her retirement from a successful career in family law. Sheila was an integral part of our firm and we value our continued relationship with her after her retirement. Any inquiries, please contact Carol Hutchison at chutchison@jkhannaford.com


J K Hannaford Barristers has an art collection arising from acquisitions made at charitable events that feature the works of emerging and established Canadian artists. Among the charitable events from which the collection has been created are, Art with Heart (an auction supporting Casey House), SNAP (an event supporting the AIDS community of Toronto), and Art Gems (a fundraiser for the Creative Works Studio).


The firm is also involved in several charitable endeavours including, Lawyers Feed the Hungry and our annual Gingerbread Holiday party supporting the Red Door Family Shelter.

Red Door Family Shelter Benefit — 2018 Annual Gingerbread Holiday Party









Please note that any email correspondence is informational only. You will not be considered a client until we have agreed to act for you in accordance with our usual policies for accepting clients. The content of this website is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. No action with regards to your particular matter should be taken until you have first sought full legal or professional advice from a lawyer fully retained to act on your behalf.


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