How Divorce Works in Ontario
A Divorce in Ontario can be obtained one year after the date of separation, earlier if you are seeking divorce as a result of infidelity or mental/physical cruelty. It takes only one individual to end the marriage.
Provided you have settled all the issues arising from your marriage (children issues, support, and property division), either one or both of you together can apply for an uncontested divorce.
The court process to obtain an uncontested divorce requires the completion of a form called “Application for Divorce” which you will take to the court to have issued and to pay your court fees. A copy of the Application is then served on your spouse. Your spouse has 30 days to respond to the application if he/she contests the divorce. If it is uncontested, your spouse need do nothing and you will then be able to proceed to file your Affidavit of Service together with an Affidavit for Divorce to obtain your Divorce Judgement.
It is very important that you have a separation agreement dealing with all the issues arising from your marriage prior to obtaining a divorce judgment.
How to Choose a Lawyer
- Ask for a referral from someone who was satisfied with how their separation/divorce was handled. The more recommendations you receive for this lawyer, so much the better.
- Check out the lawyer’s website.
- Interview the lawyer at your initial consultation and ensure you are satisfied with the lawyer’s skill and their explanation of the law and how it applies to your situation, as well as how well you are able to communicate with him or her.
- Did the lawyer explain all your options for resolution?
- Ensure you are able to afford the lawyer’s fees. However, do not necessarily take the cheapest lawyer since it may also indicate the lawyer’s level of experience.