Mr. Chairman, I should like to say a few words this afternoon on this particular petition. I should like to again point out to the committee that people in the province of Quebec are faced with certain problems that do not normally arise in the province from which I come. I think these problems are worth some consideration by the committee. In looking over the evidence of this particular petition I find attached a number of documents. There is the marriage certificate and several other documents, including a settlement by the Superior Court of the province of Quebec as to the maintenance of the children. I think there is strong evidence here that this is one of the things the committee should look into. However, I should like to refer the committee to the fact that attached to this petition is an additional document that sometimes is attached to petitions, though not very often. In this particular case it is a document that was tabled originally in the Superior Court of the province of Quebec, and it is a contract between the plaintiff and the defendant.
The marriage certificate is here. The marriage was registered in the church of St. Andrew and St. Paul, in Montreal, on June 8, 1939. There is also attached a document which is a contract in a legal sense. I think this warrants some consideration. We are all well aware of the fact-and this is something that we have deplored on many occasions-that in the province of Quebec women have little right to property. In the first place, this contract contains a stipulation as to the ownership by the lady of
property of her own, so that the property she brings into the marriage will remain her own. Therefore if something happens, this property will be under her administration and will be separate from the property of her husband. The second section of the contract, however, reads this way:
The sum of $25,000 to be paid to the future wife by the future husband, his heirs and legal representatives within three months after the dissolution of the said marriage, with the right to him to make payments on account during the said marriage, either by investments in the name of the said future wife, by mortgage or hypothec upon or the purchase of immovable property, or in any other way.
It goes on to say:
Should the said future husband during the said marriage become insolvent, the said future wife shall thereupon have the right to claim and demand payment of the said sum of $25,000 or any part thereof remaining unpaid-