s. 1(2) intended to address? The answer is found in the temporal
restriction placed upon s. 1(2) — “the term spouse does not
include a person who, at the relevant time, lives separate and
apart” (emphasis added).
 The respondent’s position, that s. 1(2) excludes from the
term “spouse” all those who are living separate and apart because
of marital breakdown, fails to grapple with the temporal qualification embedded within that provision: “at the relevant time”.
On the respondent’s interpretation of the provision, those words
would be rendered meaningless. Remove them and the respondent’s suggested interpretation of s. 1(2) would remain unchanged.
This approach would offend the principle of statutory interpretation that presumes that each word in a provision has meaning and
plays a role in advancing the legislative purpose: Sullivan, at §8.23.
 The appellant suggests that the words “at the relevant
time” have a very specific meaning and drive the purpose for
which the provision exists. I agree.
 The purpose of s. 1(2) is not to deprive donors of in vitro
embryos of the ability to withdraw their consent because of
marital breakdown or divorce. The provision is designed to protect those people who are technically married, but living separate
and apart because of marital breakdown, from becoming a donor
couple under s. 10(1)(b) in the first place, simply by virtue of their
 This reasoning is easily understood if one takes a hypothetical situation into account. Imagine two people who are
married, but whose marriage broke down years ago. While they
have not obtained a divorce, they moved apart and have not
spoken for years. Now imagine that one of those estranged spouses
decides to pursue IVF and has an embryo created. Without the
operation of s. 1(2), donor couple status could be unwittingly
bestowed upon the estranged spouses by virtue of s. 10(1)(b),
imposing donor status on a “couple who are spouses . . . at the
time the in vitro embryo is created” (emphasis added).
 At a minimum, s. 10(1)(b) could create serious confusion
about donor status in the context of separated, but still married
couples. Section 1(2) clears up any potential confusion. The reference to “the relevant time” within s. 1(2) must be read as the
time that the embryo is created. Notably, the wording of
s. 10(1)(b) dovetails with that approach, imposing donor couple
status on couples “who are spouses . . . at the time that the in
vitro embryo is created”.
 Section 1(2) is a clear means by which to ensure that those
whose marriages have broken down do not become donor couples
simply by virtue of the fact that they have not obtained divorces.