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The Childhood, Law & Policy Network (CLPN)

Miss Deanne Sowter


PhD Candidate and Vanier Scholar, Osgoode Hall Law School, Canada



Deanne Sowter is a doctoral candidate and Vanier Scholar at Osgoode Hall Law School. Her research focuses on family law, gender-based violence, and legal ethics, and it has been supported by SSHRC and several prestigious fellowships and scholarships including the Honourable Willard Z Estey Teaching Fellowship and the OBA Foundation Chief Justice of Ontario Fellowship in Legal Ethics and Professionalism Studies.

Deanne’s work has been published in several peer-reviewed journals including the Dalhousie Law Journal, the Canadian Bar Review, and the Child and Family Law Quarterly, and it has been cited by the Supreme Court of Canada. She taught as an Instructor at the University of Calgary and as an Adjunct Professor at Western Law. Deanne has a JD from Osgoode Hall Law School, an LLM from the University of Toronto, and is a collaboratively-trained family lawyer.



  • “The Bounds of Legality: An Exploration of the Limits on Ethical Advocacy in Family Law” (2022) 25:1-2 Leg Ethics 4-25.
  • “Ethical Discretion: The Complexities for a Lawyer Reporting a Child in Need of Protection” (2022) 100:1 Can Bar Rev 40-65.
  • “The Future Harm Exception: Coercive Control as Serious Psychological Harm and the Challenge for Lawyers’ Ethics” (2021) 44:2 Dal LJ 603-640.
  • “Full Disclosure: Family Violence and Legal Ethics” (2020) 53:1 UBC L Rev 141-178.
  • “Increasing the Emphasis on Family Law Lawyering: Correspondent’s Report from Canada” (2018) 21:2 Leg Ethics 163-166.
  • “Advocacy in Non-Adversarial Family Law: A Recommendation for Revision to the Model Code” (2018) 35 Windsor Y B Access Just 401-432.
  • “Professionalism & Ethics in Family Law: The Other 90%” (2016) 6.1 Journal of Arbitration and Mediation 167-218.


Family Law, Gender-based Violence, Dispute Resolution, Feminist Legal Theory, Legal Ethics
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