Patricia P. Sealy, Q.C.
Barrister & Solicitor
Mediator, Collaborative Lawyer
Patricia is a senior lawyer who has been practicing family law for 22 years, the past 19 years at Daunais McKay & Harms, and served as Managing Partner for a number of them.
Patricia’s past work experience with families and dually diagnosed youth informs her support of clients to address parenting, support and property division issues in a manner that reflects their expressed concerns and desired outcomes.
As a trained mediator and registered collaborative law lawyer, Patricia focuses on processes that promote family wellness, are cost effective and which avoid engagement in stressful litigation. Patricia excels at applying alternative dispute resolution techniques to assist clients to achieve effective, constructive, and creative resolution of their disputes. Throughout the process leading to resolution, Patricia takes time to ensure that clients understand their chosen process. Patricia is responsive and ensures that communications with clients are timely and provide them with the support and information required to both understand their options and make fully informed choices regarding which steps they choose to take to resolve their matter.
Patricia attempts to reduce the emotional impact which clients may experience during negotiations, whether they are starting a relationship and negotiating a cohabitation agreement or pre-nuptial agreement, or post relationship breakdown. Patricia assists clients during the negotiation process to have difficult conversations and to clearly express their interests at a time when they feel uncertain about finances, their future, and if applicable, how they will co-parent. When the results of those negotiation are reduced to a contract, they have a road map, which allows them to move forward and resume their lives with greater certainty, confidence, and peace. Patricia’s goal is to minimize the toxic stress that can paralyze couples and families when they are unable to find effective solutions to address their concerns, and to provide families with resources for the future, avoiding the need for legal intervention whenever possible.
As a member of Innovation Team 21 in the Palix Foundation Initiative Patricia worked with the team to develop and bring the “Breakup Earthquake” story” to each and every Albertan.
The story highlights the impact of toxic stress on children as a result of relationship breakdown:
Getting Through The Breakup Earthquake (Video)
With her vast experience working with youth and families, Patricia has an excellent track record for mediating issues involving decision-making responsibilities and parenting time. Patricia ensures that both client and children’s needs are prioritized and recognizes the importance of the roles that each parent plays in the ongoing healthy development of a child. Patricia believes that every family is unique and requires tailored solutions to meet those needs. No one parenting plan works for every family and Patricia assists families to generate creative options that not only provides children with a strong foundation, but also supports healthy physical and mental development and promotes resiliency. Patricia recognizes the benefit of working to put a parenting plan in place early in the negotiation process, thereby minimizing potential trauma to children, while parents work through myriad challenges which may arise upon breakdown of the family unit.
Patricia has supported many clients to navigate settlements which involved the determination of high income, complex property division, and interrelated child and spousal support issues. Patricia believes in families negotiating in a manner that helps them to preserve assets and income for the benefit of the family future rather than engaging in exhausting and expensive litigation, leaving both parties unsatisfied and with more debt. Patricia supports her clients to divorce respectfully, build and maintain healthy parenting relationships, identify their priorities and negotiate in forums which are non-adversarial.
Patricia is a Member of the Law Society of Alberta, the Alberta Family and Mediation Society, the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, the Calgary Bar Association, the Association of Women Lawyers, the Canadian Bar Association Alternative Dispute Resolution and Family Law subsections, and the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers, Alberta Chapter.
Patricia has continuously volunteered in various capacities over the past 22 years, including on the boards of the Association of Collaborative Professionals, the Women in Law Leadership Awards, the Association of Women Lawyers, Student Legal Assistance, as a member of the National Family Law Negotiation Committee, the Judicial Advisory Committee for Alberta, and the University of Calgary Faculty of Law Admissions and Scholarship Committee. Patricia has been a volunteer lawyer at the Calgary Women’s Centre Family Law Legal Clinic, Calgary Legal Guidance, with the Assist Articling Student Call Out Initiative, the Law Society of Alberta Mentor Connect and as an Early Intervention and Practice Assessor, and with the Palix Foundation and the Calgary Immigrant Women’s Association. Patricia is an avid supporter of the Black Law Students’ Association at the University of Calgary.
Patricia is the recipient of the Women in Law Leadership in the Profession Private Practice Award (2017) and was awarded a Q.C. designation in 2020. Patricia is the recipient of the 2021 Lillian Ruby Clements Trailblazer Award, which will be presented at the Women’s Legal Forum on March 3, 2022.