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Divorce Lawyers In Ontario

Divorce and Separation are very stressful. Learn how our divorce lawyers in Ontario can help you through this difficult time. 

Looking for Guidance?

At Sutton Law, divorce lawyers can give you tailored and accurate legal advice pertaining to your specific case. 

Divorce in Ontario

          Divorce and Separation is a very trying time for everyone involved. It is important to hire a professional divorce lawyer near you who can provide you with logical and important legal advice, as well as be patient as you go through this difficult time in your life. 

           Divorce in Ontario is regulated by  The Divorce Act, R.S.C.1985, c.3  which dictates all the rules and procedures that both the divorcing couples and divorce lawyers throughout Ontario must obey. 

           Although many couples choose to divorce right away, under ordinary circumstances it is only necessary if you wish to re-marry.  If that is the case, you will require a formal divorce judgement.

            There are 2 kinds of divorce: Contested and Uncontested. Please see below to read the definition for each one. 

            There is only one reason to have a divorce in Ontario: The breakdown of a marriage. There are 3 ways in which you can prove it: One-year separation, divorce due to adultery or divorce due to cruelty. Please read below for more information regarding each one. 

Contested Divorce in Ontario

         In order for the divorce to be finalized, spouses have to agree on certain subjects. They include children, marital assets, property, spousal support, etc. If they cannot agree, the divorce qualifies as a contested divorce. Note: These divorces can be resolved with or without a trial with the court. In cases like these, it is wise to hire a divorce lawyer who knows what they are doing and has your best interest at heart. They may suggest options like mediation and arbitration. If the divorcing couple still cannot decide and agree on the subject their divorce will be taken to court, and possibly continue to trial should it so require. 

Uncontested Divorce in Ontario

           It is common for divorces to be uncontested in Ontario and throughout Canada. Thus, divorcing spouses can resolve their differences without resorting to court. This proves to be a more simple and peaceful way to divorce.

One year Separation

            The most common type of divorce is one-year separation divorce.  It is exactly what it sounds like: you have to prove to the court that you and your spouse have been apart and separated for over 12 months. There is a list of requirements, or rather actors, that the court will look over in order to determine that you were, in fact, apart. 

             If you live in the same house, you can still qualify for this kind of divorce, especially if living under the same roof is due to financial means of either one of the spouses. The court will then make sure to consider other factors, including but not limited to physical separation, communication, presence or absence of joint activities, and filing income taxes.

Divorce & Adultery

        Adultery is defined by Oxford Languages Dictionary as voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and a person who is not his or her spouse. You cannot use your infidelity as grounds for divorcing your spouse. All this to say, if you can prove that your spouse has indeed cheated on you, the court has the right to waive the one-year waiting period and grant the divorce on the spot.

Divorce & Cruelty


           If your spouse has been cruel to you during your marriage, you may be able to get a divorce right away. The Ontario Court of Appeals' ruling from 1970  stated that if a spouse, by his or her behaviour, causes malicious or unnecessary pain to the physical, emotional or mental state of the spouse, they may be considered guilty of cruelty. They will conduct a subjective test, to see whether or not the health of the affected spouse had been negatively affected. Ironically enough, it seems that deteriorating the spouse's health is a requirement for a cruelty-based divorce to go through.

            The court also made sure to heavily underline the fact that the behaviour has to be of dangerous and heavy nature, and not just an argument or repeated silly behaviour. The behaviour has to have made it impossible, or even dangerous to cohabitate with your spouse. Your whole marriage will be considered, especially if the cruel behaviour is constant snarky remarks, complaints, accusations, etc.

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Division of Property, Assets and Matrimonial Home: Explained

Division of property usually occurs when a marital relationship ends. In Ontario, such a relationship is considered equal, and as such, both partners are entitled to an equal split in terms of properties and assets.  Assets usually include things like your car, your home, pension plan, insurance and others. 

Here’s how it works 

  1. Anything that you have owned before getting married, any increase of the value will be split in two. 

For example, you owned a toaster. Let's say you bought it for 50$, and during your marriage, its value increased by another 50$. When splitting the assets upon the termination of a marital relationship, that 50$ would be split in half to each spouse, so 25$ to each one. 

This same rule applies to the family home. The full amount of home value must be split, even if you have received it as a gift, inherited or owned this home previously to get married.

This money, the owed payment to the spouse, is called an equalization payment, also recognized as equalization of the net family value under the Family Law act. 

      2. You can agree on how to separate everything in a separation agreement

So, going to court is a long procedure, which usually costs a lot of money. So, it is important to correctly and accurately draft a separation agreement upon terminating a marital relationship with your spouse and make sure to include details about separating assets and properties,  so that both spouses can agree and be satisfied with what they receive as a result of the separation. 

This agreement must be drafted accurately and precisely because nobody wants unsatisfied people arguing over who gets a shower curtain and who gets the soap. Both spouses must have their lawyer look over the agreement, to make sure that everyone is happy and the separation is as unproblematic as possible

Sutton Law has had extensive experience with drafting separation agreements and knows its way around. Please consult our Separation page to learn more about separation agreements and what Sutton Law can do for you. 

Woman Typing
  • When should I consult a family lawyer?
    You should consider consulting a family lawyer if you are contemplating divorce, need to negotiate spousal or child support, are involved in a custody or visitation dispute, are considering adoption, or need legal representation in any family law matter.
  • What does a family lawyer do?
    A family lawyer in Canada specializes in issues involving family relationships, such as divorce, child custody, and adoption, among others. They provide legal advice, represent clients in court, and draft important legal documents related to family law matters.
  • What is the difference between a contested and uncontested divorce?
    An uncontested divorce is where both parties agree on all terms of the divorce, including asset division, child custody, and support. A contested divorce occurs when there are disagreements on one or more of these issues, requiring negotiation or court intervention to resolve.
  • What is an FRO in Ontario?
    In Ontario, a "FRO" is a common term you will see in any family law book or any Ontario family law office, and it stands for Family Responsibility Office. It is an agency responsible for enforcing support payments. As a result, when spousal support or child support orders are filed with the FRO, the FRO becomes responsible for collecting and disbursing the support. The FRO does not deal with issues related to custody, access, or equalization payments. The FRO's role is to collect, distribute, and enforce support orders for children and spouses. If you have an issue regarding spousal or child support, require filling out forms or have a matter regarding the Family Responsibility Office, call us now at 647-492-4929, or book a free 30-minute appointment to discuss how our family lawyers at the Sutton Law office near you can help you with your case.
  • What is an FLA in Ontario?
    An FLA is another common term among family lawyers in Ontario. The legislation passed by the Ontario Legislature in 1990 is known as the Family Law Act. As it stands, it governs the rights of spouses and children in regards to property, support, inheritance, prenuptial agreements, separation agreements, and other family law matters. If you have any problems regarding settling in the division of property, custody of children, need to draft a separation agreement or any other family law matter, call us now at 647-492-4929 or book a free 30-minute appointment to discuss how our family lawyers at the Sutton Law office near you can help you with your case.
  • What are the Family Law Rules in Ontario?
    Family Law Rules is a codex of rules that the family law lawyers and any kind of family law offices across Ontario follow. It states which form you have to fill out and where to send them, as well as the procedures in the Ontario Family Court. If you have any questions regarding which forms you require to fill out or need advice on your matter, please call us now or book a free 30-minute consultation with our office in order to determine how the family lawyers at the Sutton Law office near you can best help you with your matter.
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