How To Do Your Own Divorce With Five Simple Steps
If you’re thinking about divorce in Canada, you must be informed of the necessary steps needed. Also, you have to make sure you meet the criteria followed according to Canadian Family Law. The main concern is whether you meet the residency requirement. If you and your spouse don’t live in Canada, you may not have a chance to divorce. Again, there is no way you can undo your marriage in a country where both of you live because your Canadian marriage is not recognized there.
Your partner may not be willing to divorce; this doesn’t mean you cannot legally end your marriage. You can do your own divorce and make sure to stay in charge of every legal proceeding. You only need to know how to apply for divorce in Ontario.
Do It Yourself Divorce Process
For those who agree to end their marriage, the process becomes easy. The reason is that they only need to draft a separation agreement with details on how to go about children’s support, visitation, and spousal support, among other vital issues. If there are no children, assets, or debts to be shared, the process becomes faster and less expensive. To be divorced, you must show a divorce order, and getting one is only possible if you apply to the relevant court. The grounds for your divorce will be based on your marriage breakdown, which is depicted below:
· You have been living apart for one year or more.
· There has been physical and mental cruelty from your spouse.
· Your spouse committed adultery.
With the above in place, you can start up your own divorce application. But, it’s always a good idea to apply for divorce in Ontario with the help of a family lawyer. An experienced family lawyer has the basic concepts needed to get started with your divorce. Besides, he/she can inform you about your right and responsibilities during the process of divorce.
Five Steps For Getting Started With Your Own Divorce
Doing your own divorce becomes easy with the below steps:
1. Keep in mind the type of divorce: There are only two ways in which you can file for your divorce:
ü Divorce only
ü Divorce with child support, visitation, and custody division of assets or spousal support, among others
In both cases, if you and your partner seem to agree and have come up with a separation agreement, you are assured that you will have an uncontested divorce. But if there appears to be an issue about the divorce itself, divisions of your assets, and how to deal with children, you will have to file a contested divorce. In such a case, the judge will be forced to deal with your family issues.
2. Complete relevant forms to start your case: It’s good to note that there are different divorce forms for couples with children and those without. But generally, you will be needed to complete the below forms:
ü General application Form 8: This is used when you and your spouse can’t agree and have vital issues to be resolved, and still, you have other claims such as child support.
ü Application for divorce Form8A: The form is filled when the only claim is divorce. The form could either be for a simple or a joint application.
3. Submit your forms and supporting documents: Along with your forms, you may need your original marriage certificate, among other documents submitted to the court. But this will depend on the circumstance of your case. Make sure to keep a copy of the forms in case you may file and lose track. If you consider filing for divorce in Ontario online, you will get the instructions for completing the forms from the state’s court website. If you cannot locate the forms online, you can get help from a country clerk. After completion of your documents, the court will have to issue them. Meaning, they will have:
ü A signature and date of the original application with a court seal
ü Court file number which must be written at the top right corner on your forms
ü Registration of Divorce proceedings forms to be filled to ensure no other divorce has been made either by you or your spouse.
After all, is done, the court sends you a clearance certificate. Remember that you have to pay for court fees when filing your application and after the court reviews your divorce. If you cannot afford court fees, you may qualify for a fee waiver.
4. Serve your spouse: You have to serve your spouse with a copy of the application issued by the court within six months. Serving has to be done through a special service. You can ask a family friend or anyone to serve your spouse. The server must file an affidavit to prove that you served your spouse. If your spouse is outside Ontario, you can use the Hague Service Convention.
5. Get your divorce order: Your spouse must have responded to your application for you to get a divorce order. If this never happens, you may have to file an affidavit and give your spouse’s details. If the judge deems it fit, you may file for an uncontested divorce. If you filed for divorce only, the process could take 4-6 months. But in cases where there are other issues involved, this may take more time.
If you have any questions concerning how to file for your divorce, you can talk to a family lawyer.