Linda C. Neilson

Professor Emerita



Tilley Hall 20

1 506 453 4849

Linda C Neilson, Professor Emerita, is a lawyer and a socio-legal academic. Her fields include domestic violence, court systems, conflict resolution, family law and sociology of law.

Linda holds two degrees from the University of New Brunswick: BA (Hons) and LL.B. (now called JD). She practiced law in New Brunswick (1979-1986, 1988-1992). In 1986 she took a leave of absence from law practice to conduct graduate studies at the London School of Economics (L.S.E), Faculty of Law in England. Following academic assessment, she was transferred from the MPhil into the University’s PhD Program and was awarded a PhD in Law together with a certificate of cross disciplinary graduate studies in Family Law, Conflict Resolution and Sociology by the University of London (L.S.E.) in 1992. She accepted an academic appointment at the University of New Brunswick in the Sociology Department in 1993 where she coordinated the development and implementation of the University’s multi-disciplinary Law In Society Program.

Linda supervised numerous graduate students in the University’s multidisciplinary graduate programs as well as in Sociology. She received national awards for her family mediation research, Faculty Merit awards from the University, and was appointed University Research Scholar in 2011-2013. She retired in 2016.

Throughout her career, Linda’s research has been devoted to legal system analysis and reform. Governments, judicial and academic institutions have invited her to present her work internationally (Australia, Hungary, Italy, England, United States). Her PhD research and subsequent collaboration with P. English resulted in a national certification process for Family Law Mediators (Family Mediation Canada).

Recent major works include, on behalf of the National Judicial Institute, three editions of a peer- reviewed bench book for Canadian judges on domestic violence and family law, and a comprehensive e-book for lawyers, mediators, and service providers on the same topic published by the Canadian Legal Information Institute (CanLII). She serves regularly on government committees as a policy consultant and is associated with the Muriel McQueen Fergusson Centre for Family Violence Research. She currently leads a research project to design a new coordinated family violence court model for the Province of New Brunswick.

Selected publications

Neilson, Linda C. (2018) Parental Alienation Empirical Analysis: Child Best Interests or Parental Rights? (Fredericton: Muriel McQueen Fergusson Centre for Family Violence; Vancouver: FREDA Centre for Research on Violence Against Women and Children)

Neilson, Linda C. (2017) Responding to Domestic Violence in Family Law, Civil Protection and Child Protection Cases (Ottawa: Canadian Legal Information Institute, CanLII).

Neilson, Linda C. (2015) Enhancing Civil Protection In Domestic Violence Cases: Cross Canada Checkup (Fredericton: Muriel McQueen Fergusson Centre for Family Violence Research, UNB).

Neilson, Linda C. (2015) Domestic Violence. Electronic Bench Book (3rd edition). Ottawa: National Judicial Institute.

Neilson, Linda C. (2014) At Cliff's Edge: Judicial Dispute Resolution in Domestic Violence Cases. Family Court Review 52(3): 529-63.

Neilson, Linda C. (2014) Enhancing Safety: When Domestic Violence Cases are in Multiple Legal Systems (Criminal, family, child protection) A Family Law, Domestic Violence Perspective (Ottawa: Department of Justice); Renforcement de la sécurité: Affaires de violence conjugale faisant intervenir plusieurs systèmes juridiques (en matière de droit pénal, de droit de la famille et de protection de la jeunesse) Perspective du droit de la famille sur la violence conjugale (Ottawa: Ministère de la Justice)

Neilson, Linda C (2012) Enhancing Safety: When Domestic Violence Cases are in multiple legal systems (Criminal, family, child protection). A Family Law, Domestic Violence Perspective. London, Ontario. Centre for Research & Education on Violence against Women and Children, Western University.

Neilson, Linda C. (2009) Domestic Violence and Family Law in Canada: A Handbook for Judgeswith Introductory comments by Justice John F. McGarry, Superior Court, Ontario. Ottawa: National Judicial Institute, EBB. In electronic format this book is identified as Domestic Violence Family Law.

Neilson, Linda C. (2010) Partner Abuse Claims. In N. Larsen and B. Burtch (Eds.) Law in Society Canadian Readings (Toronto: Nelson Education)

Neilson, Linda C. and Peggy English (2007) The role of Interest-based facilitation in designing accreditation standards: the Canadian experienceConflict Resolution Quarterly Vol. 18 (3), 221-248.

Neilson, Linda C. (2004) Assessing Mutual Partner-Abuse Claims in Child Custody and Access Cases. Family Court Review Vol. 42 (3) 411-438.

Neilson, Linda C. (2004) Children and Family Violence in the New Brunswick Law: How Responsibilities Get Lost In Rights. In Mary Lou Stirling, Catherine Ann Cameron, Nancy Nason-Clark and Bauke Miedema (Eds.) Understanding Abuse: Partnering for Change. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Neilson, L. and English, P. (2004) Certifying Mediators. In J. Folberg, A. Milne and P. Salem (Eds.) Mediating Family and Divorce Disputes, New York: Guilford Publications.

Neilson, Linda C. (2003) Putting Revisions to the Divorce Act Through a Family Violence Filter: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. Canadian Journal of Family Law Vol. 20 (1) 11-56.

Neilson, Linda C. (2002) A Comparative Analysis of Law in Theory and Law in Action in Partner Abuse Cases: What Do the Data Tell Us?. In Studies in Law, Politics and Society 26: 141-87.

Neilson, Linda C. (2001) Spousal Abuse, Children and the Legal System Final Report for Canadian Bar Association Law for the Futures Fund. Fredericton: Muriel McQueen Fergusson Centre for Family Violence Research