Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide

Getting a Divorce in Ontario

Ontario divorce proceedings constitute the hearing on issues of separation and divorce taking place in Ontario. Getting a divorce in Ontario requires understanding of the family law. The divorce act is a central law made by the parliament of Canada which is equally administered across all the territories. It states that only the superior court of each province can deal with divorce petition, as per Ontario divorce law.

Ontario has a specific set of rules that must be followed for filing divorce. You should follow the grounds and residential requirements that are applicable for filing. You can apply for divorce if you were legally married to your spouse in Ontario or Canada; either of the spouses has lived in Ontario for at least one year prior to filing the petition.

Ontario court law accepts divorces based on fault and no fault grounds. The concept of no-fault divorce is more popular in the state. To get divorced, you and your spouse should have been living separately for at least one year. The divorce will be granted after 12 months of separation are complete. Grounds of divorce are your spouse has committed adultery or treated you with intolerable cruelty. Any of the spouse has been suffering from mental health problems or has been sentenced to jail for some crime. You need to proceed on these grounds for getting a divorce in Ontario.

In Ontario, issues related to family law are discussed. These matters are heard in the Ontario court justice, the superior county of justice or family court branch of superior court of justice depending on how the issues are.

  • Ontario court of justice hears the family law issues that come under Ontario legislation. It includes child custody, support, visitation, adoption and child protection applications. It does not deal with issues related to division.
  • Superior court of justice decides on the issues involving division of property, custody and access. It does not deal with matters related to adoption of child.

How to File for Divorce in Ontario?

  • Make sure that you meet all the legal requirements for filing divorce. Either of the spouses should fulfill the grounds and residential requirements of Ontario divorce.
  • Decide whether you want to complete the proceedings on your own or with the help of a lawyer. If you choose to work on your own, online websites can be very helpful. If you decide to choose a lawyer, make sure he is well educated and experienced in this field.
  • Draft all the documents in proper format. It includes marriage certificate, copies of all court orders, separation agreements and copies of written arrangements.
  • File the documents with the court along with the petitioner file. Serve the petition to your spouse. In Ontario, once the petition is served, respondent should respond within 120 days.
  • Attend the court hearing. If divorce is uncontested, attending the court is not necessary. The final step in the preceding will require your attendance in the court to get the final decree.

Getting a divorce in Ontario takes almost 3 months as all the legal formalities need to be completed.

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