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If the gossip mill is to be believed, Joe and Tina Simpson may be nearing a settlement in their recent divorce proceedings. Parents to celebrities Jessica and Ashlee Simpson, Tina, 53 and Joe, 55 filed for divorce in September 2012 amidst rumours of Joe's infidelity. The couple had been married for 34 years.

Since news of the split broke, the parties have been reportedly feuding over the family's considerable wealth. In January 2013, Radar Online reported that Tina had attempted to settle the divorce by offering Joe $100 million of her $300 million fortune. According to the report, Joe refused this settlement and was holding out for more, particularly a bigger share of the profits from the extremely profitable Jessica Simpson Collection.

According to Radar, Tina has made another attempt to settle the divorce amicably, offering Joe an equal split of the family businesses, including the lucrative Jessica Simpson Collection.

In Ontario, an Offer to Settle may be made at any point during the negotiation or litigation process, and are in fact required during certain stages of court proceedings.

According to Rule 18 of the Family Law Rules,

"'offer' means an offer to settle one or more claims in a case, motion appeal or enforcement, and includes a counter-offer".

The Rule further stipulates that an offer must be signed by the party making it, and their lawyer, if any.

These attempts at settlement boast a number of advantages to parties involved in family law disputes, such as:

  1. Clarifying each party's position on the issues;
  2. Narrowing the issues that may require litigation;
  3. Encouraging negotiation as a means of resolution;
  4. Achieving a costs award - subject to the court's discretion, if your result in court is equally as or more favourable than your Offer to Settle, you may be awarded your legal costs.

If you are involved in a family law dispute and require assistance in negotiating a resolution, call us today at (905) 581-7222 to schedule a consultation.