Basis for Divorce - There are
three grounds for divorce in Canada: (1) separation for a year;
(2) adultery; or (3) physical or mental cruelty.
does not assist with the latter category.
your divorce must be based on separation
(read more below) or adultery, but only where the spouse who
committed the adultery will admit the adultery in an affidavit.
Separation - The Divorce Act requires that you have been
'living separate and apart' for one year. You can file for
divorce any time after you separate, however the court will not
finalize the divorce until you have been separated for a year. 'Living separate and
apart' does not necessarily mean in separate
residences. If your relationship has ended but both spouses are
still living in the home for one reason or another (money, kids,
etc.), you may still be considered to be
living 'separate and apart' if you are no longer behaving as
though you were married. Click here to read more about this
courts in Ontario allow you to start the divorce process once
you are 'separated', however you cannot finalize the divorce
until you have been separated for a year*. However, despite the
fact that there is no legal justification for this, some courts,
including Chatham and St. Catharines, will not allow
you to file the divorce until you have been separated for a
year*. *Unless your divorce is
based on adultery or abuse.
Legal Separation? - This is a myth - there is no such thing
as 'filing for separation' in Ontario. You are legally separated
when the marriage breaks down and you are 'living separate and apart' (see above).
Separation- I an
uncontested or joint divorce, the only 'proof' of separation
required by the court is your sworn affidavit stating when you
Agreement - The courts do not require that you have
a separation agreement - however any lawyer would recommend that
you have one - particularly where you have minor children and/or
you own property that must be divided. Click
here to read more.
Adultery: You cannot
file a sole/uncontested divorce based on your own adultery, nor can you
file a joint divorce based on adultery. The non-adulterous
spouse must be the one to file for divorce. Note: some judges
will not grant a divorce based on adultery unless the other
spouse admits to the adultery in writing. If your divorce is
rejected on this basis, you will have to wait until you have
been separated for a year to have the divorce finalized.
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