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Separation Lawyer near you

It is not required to apply for a divorce if you want to end your relationship with your spouse. You can always choose to simply separate. At Sutton Law, we understand that separation is just as difficult as a divorce. It is important to keep a level head and understand every aspect. Our separation lawyers always make sure that you understand all the terms and conditions of the agreements drafted, so you don't feel like you got cheated out. 

Looking for Guidance?

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

Separation Agreement in Ontario

           All separation means is that you decide to end the relationship without involving the court or divorce lawyers. You can choose to divide your property, and taxes and discuss spousal support and child custody in an oral agreement. You can seek out the services of a divorce lawyer if you so wish, who will help you draft out a document stating the condition of properties and other assets. 

           A Separation Agreement is a contract between spouses who decided to live separately and apart that governs how they will continue to live after the end of their spousal relationship. It is highly advisable that you discuss and settle with your ex all aspects of your life and have a clear understanding of who will do what.

            You can set on your own what would you do with your matrimonial home, personal property, childcare obligations, parenting time and support payments. When dealing with such complex agreements proper legal advice is necessary, as many aspects might go out of control, and you will not be satisfied with what you have bargained for. Numerous restrictions might disable you to bargain child support for other benefits you might want. The exchange of child support payments for full custody of children is one of the most often mistakes people do and they struggle when the Courts decline to enforce this clause.

             Parenting time, formerly known as child custody and access, is also an important part of the Separation Agreement. A proper separation agreement will not only set who is responsible for the kids in general but should also provide for weekends and holidays arrangement, as well as have some backup plan in case one parent is not able to fulfill its contractual obligations. Whether a parent will have limited access to the child and what those limits can look like is a complicated matter and professional assistance is required.

           There are many misconceptions as to the child support payments that exist. Such mistakes might be costly and especially sad when discovered after giving up some entitlements. The Child Support Guidelines are strict and provide limited opportunities to be modified, even if both spouses agree. Although not seen at the outset, tax consequences might be harsh.

            Our lawyers will help you to determine the proper wording sand structure for your separation agreement, as well as discuss any other subjects that are necessary to have a conflict-less separation.

Free Separation Agreement Form

           There are many resources online that offer a free separation agreement form. Each one says theirs suits you better. However, that is not the case. 

            A separation agreement should always suit your needs. Each separation is different and each couple agrees and disagrees with different things. Because of that, many of the forms that you see online regarding separation agreements that say " Download for free" more often than not are not exactly what you would be looking for. 

              When people download the draft of a separation agreement online, especially if it is a free pdf you may have found somewhere, odds are it is extremely vague and will not help you should things ever go wrong. It also may not necessarily suit you and your spouse's needs in terms of the separation agreement. 

           This is precisely why it is strongly recommended that you see a separation lawyer to help you draft a separation agreement. A separation lawyer makes an agreement that is unique to you and your spouse discusses everything in detail and gets it in writing.

              It is important to get a separate agreement tailored to you and your spouse specifically, as every couple agrees and disagrees on different subjects. It is crucial that you discuss child custody, taxes, child and spousal support as well as child access with your spouse, and get everything in writing with a good separation lawyer. Even if you agree on the terms of those subjects right now, a separation agreement will keep you and your spouse safe should one of you ever change their mind.  

            In short, a separation agreement that you found online and downloaded as a free pdf or something else is not necessarily the best way to get a separation agreement with your spouse. Make sure you seek legal separation counsel before filling out forms like these. 

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Have Any Questions? Looking for Guidance?

Loyally helping clients in GTA and Ottawa areas, including Markham, Brampton, Missisauga, Georgina, Toronto, Oshawa

Reviewing Legal Agreement
  • 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.
  • Is it possible to divorce without the consent of my spouse?
    In short, maybe. It's complicated, and it would only be granted on certain conditions. To get a divorce without the consent of your spouse, you must follow the route of Divorce due to adultery or due to cruelty. Each of these is extremely hard to prove due to circumstantial evidence, but if you manage to prove it, the court has the authority to grant you the divorce immediately. Important note: You cannot apply for these if you are the one that cheated or are considered to be cruel. Divorce can still be obtained if you file for divorce without knowing your spouse's whereabouts. However, you must first make every effort to locate your partner. You can apply to the court for an order for substituted service if you are unable to locate your spouse. A substituted service order describes how you must notify your spouse of the divorce filing. The judge must know that you have done everything in your power to find your partner before he or she will grant you a divorce. Upon making all efforts to locate your partner, the divorce will be granted. If you have any questions regarding any of the divorce procedures, notifying your partner or any other issues related to divorce paperwork and filing, call us at 647-492-4929 or book a free 30-minute consultation to see what our divorce lawyers at Sutton Law office near you can do to help you during this difficult time.
  • I or my spouse no longer live in Ontario. Can we still divorce?
    Depends. Providing your spouse satisfies the ordinarily resident requirements and still lives in Ontario, the court can still grant a divorce. You may also apply for a divorce in your new place of residence. However, this is only possible if you have lived in your new place of residence for over a year and satisfy the ordinarily resident requirement.
  • What paperwork do I need for a Divorce in Ontario?
    The most important thing you need to get a divorce in Ontario is your marriage certificate. It is crucial to have the original copy or one issued by a governmental agency responsible for issuing certificates. If your original certificate is lost or you only have a photocopy, you must do your best to get a replacement. Even if your efforts fail, you can still obtain a divorce. If your current marriage took place outside of Canada (there are ways around this if it is impossible to obtain such proof now if your previous marriage took place outside of Canada).
  • Is a separation agreement mandatory?
    A separation agreement is strongly recommended, as it is crucial that you are able to protect yourself, your rights and your assets during a separation. All of the things you agree upon should be in writing, and it is highly preferable that you hire a separation lawyer to do that, as it will be more accurate and clear, thus reducing the risk of conflicts. It is important that you and your spouse agree on the subjects that you need to discuss upon separating, such as property, taxes, children and other assets. Court proceedings are long, expensive and tiring. However, if you want to protect yourself or you and your partner disagree on certain topics, you may want to consider the possibility of hiring a separation lawyer that can help you draft the separation agreement just in case things go haywire.
  • Do I need a separation agreement before applying for divorce?
    Upon divorce, the court will require proof that you and your spouse are living separately and apart. They will request proof of that, and although your taxes filed separately may be all right for the proceeding, it s important that you separate all of your assets and figure out a schedule for parenting time with children. Thus, the court won't need to spend a lot of time on your case, and we can reduce the chance of needing to go to court to discuss certain things. Thus, it is strongly recommended that you have a separation agreement before applying for divorce, as this shows that you, as a couple, have been living separately and apart, have figured out and separated all your assets and have an appropriately scheduled Parenting time with children if you have any.
  • What to include in my separation agreement?
    Technically, a good separation agreement consists of terms and conditions regarding your children, assets and finances. It is important to have those conditions clearly drafted and written down, to reduce the risk of future conflicts and be truly living independently of one another. It is highly recommended that a separation agreement be drafted by a separation lawyer. Call us Now at 647-492-4929 or book a free 30-minute appointment to see how our law office can help you with your matter.
  • Do I need to hire a separation lawyer to get a separation agreement?
    It is strongly recommended that you hire a separation lawyer when drafting a separation agreement. It is important to make sure to include all the elements with all the details included. A properly drafted separation agreement will not only help decrease the chances of conflict between you and your spouse but also prove to the court that you both are living truly separately and apart. Getting a lawyer's expertise has never been a bad idea. Call us now at 647-492-4929 or book a free 30-minute appointment to learn how our separation lawyers can help you!
  • How do I get custody of my children?
    Courts have the power to change custody and access orders when a change in circumstances has led to a change in the schedule. In some cases, primary custody can be given up by consent, for example, if the custodial parent becomes ill, loses his/her job or the child is more likely to spend time with the non-custodial parent.
  • How to calculate Child Support in Ontario?
    Amazing Question. To calculate the amount of child support that should be paid, both the Divorce and the Family Law Act use O. Reg. Rule 391/97 set out in the provincial Child Support Guidelines, considering also the federal Child Support Guidelines in SOR 97-175. For the amount of child support to be calculated, the paying parent's total income will be considered, as well as the number of children. The recipient's income will only be required in some situations, but that is not always the case. If you need help in calculating child support, Sutton Law can help. We cover the Toronto and GTA area, as well as the Ottawa region. Feel free to contact us at 647-492-4929 or book a free 30-minute consultation with our office to learn how we can help you with your matter.
  • Do I have to pay child support while I'm unemployed?
    If you, as the paying parent, lose your job, you will probably still receive Employment Insurance payment from the government. In Canada, if you lose your job, you will still be required to pay child support, although that amount would be lowered due to your lower income, in order to still be able to provide for your child(ren).
  • When does Child Support end?
    It is the parent's responsibility to pay child support until the child turns 18 or becomes independent. If the child no longer relies on the parents, is not applying to school or university, or has moved out of the home and has a job to support himself or herself, then he or she is no longer a child of the marriage. In determining the amount of child support if the child is pursuing post-secondary education, the court will evaluate the earning potential of the paying parent and the child's financial and emotional dependency.
  • If we share custody of our children, do I need to pay support?
    Shared custody or shared parenting time refers to the parenting time the child spends with both parents during a given year. Under Section 9, the court determines how much support should be paid. For each spouse, the amounts are listed in the applicable tables. Parenting time or shared custody arrangements increase costs. Support is requested for each spouse's child or children, taking into account their conditions, means, needs, and other circumstances. Both the income and the number of children of the paying parent will be taken into account by the court. They will then review the Tables in the Schedule. It is important to keep in mind that the guidelines are law, not just advisory, so they will always be considered. The courts will allow deviating from the table amounts if there is a good reason to do so.
  • What happens if you don't pay child support?
    The Family Responsibility Office, further referred to as FRO, was created under the Family Responsibility and Support Arrears Enforcement Act and is responsible for enforcing child support payments. This would be the office that will hold you accountable if you are late or won't pay the agreed-upon child support amount. Firstly, we'd like to make sure you understand that your child has a right to be supported by both of their parents, and it is your duty as a parent to provide the necessary funds for the child to be comfortable, and your duty as an ex-partner to help the other parent provide for the child you both created. Now, *clears throat*... Any support order made by an Ontario court as well as any support stipulation in a domestic contract that is submitted to the courts will be enforced by FRO. Once a support obligation has been established with FRO, that organization serves as a middleman for all payments. Support payors send support payments directly to FRO (often, FRO garnishes the payor's salary), and FRO subsequently sends those funds to the receiving parent. Unless parties specifically and in writing agree to leave FRO, this is the situation. If the payor spouse is not paying payments, the receiver spouse will not get child support. But the FRO has the power to demand payments if they are not being made. To seek payment, FRO may take one or more of the following actions: Suspension of the payer's license; Garnish a payor's salary or any government monies received, such as old age security payments, employment insurance, Canada Pension Plan benefits, and refunds of income taxes; Take away from the payor's bank accounts or half of a joint account that they own; Report the payer to a credit bureau (making it challenging to receive future loan approval); Suspend the passport of the payer; Any federal license, such as a pilot's license, must be suspended; Put a personal property lien on the payor's property, which later may cause authorizing seizure and sale of said property; The payor should be reported to any professional or vocational organizations to which they are a member; The failing payor may be hauled back before the court and found in contempt of the support order if the FRO is unable to compel payment via any of these methods. If found guilty of contempt, a fine or jail time may be imposed. If the FRO is unable to compel payment in any of these ways, the defaulting payor may be brought back before the court and found in contempt of the support order. Contempt is punishable by a fine or jail term, depending on the circumstances. When FRO is unable to find any income to garnish, one common enforcement strategy is to suspend the payor's driver's license. Due to such suspension, the payor may later encounter significant difficulties in obtaining a job and generating the necessary revenue to pay the support arrears. The FRO must provide the license holder with 30 days' notice before suspending it. Please get in touch with FRO if you are a support recipient and you haven't received your payment by the due date. They can let you know if the money was indeed made but only arrived late or if the payor is behind on their payments. If the payor is behind on payments, you must fill out a Statement of Arrears, specify the amount outstanding, and send it to FRO. Any support that the payor owes you from a time before the support order was recorded with FRO can also be included in the Statement of Arrears.
  • How is division of property and/or assets different for common law partners?
    Family law, which regulates the division of property and assets after the end of a marital relationship, regulates just that, marital relationships. Thus, common law partners are entitled to only what they brought into the relationship. ​As a means of preventing unjust enrichment, if you believe that you significantly contributed to the value of an asset owned by your partner (like a home you shared with your partner, a pension, or a savings account, for example), you can file a constructive trust claim. Beneficiaries of constructive trusts are entitled to the property in a specific asset, such as a marital home. If you have any questions regarding certain regulations of the Common Law, please visit the common law section of our website, or book a free 30-minute consultation to discuss what we can do for you. You can also simply call us at 647-492-4929.
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