You can now file your divorce online!

apply for divorce online
Yes, you read that title correctly. You can now file your divorce application online in Ontario. The Ontario government has now made it much easier for parties to expedite the process of filing a divorce. This change is very much welcomed by lawyers, court staff and the general public. Prior to this, it was a cumbersome process to have to physically visit the courthouse to file your documents. Now, our firm is able to prepare and file documents on your behalf online. This usually means you save time and money relating to process servers (these are companies that we hire to physically attend court to file your documents).

Online application for divorce are now available for both simple divorce applications and joint divorce applications. However, the entire filing procedure for an online divorce is only available for a joint divorce. In a joint divorce both spouses apply for the divorce together and request their divorce order online (after having filed the required documents). In a simple divorce only one of the spouses will apply for the divorce (however, the remaining procedure of service and obtaining the divorce order cannot be done online).

Here are some of the conditions for applying for a divorce online:

1. One of the spouses must have lived in Ontario for at least 12 months prior to the filing of the divorce application;
2. You have to have been separated for at least 12 months;
3. You are not applying for a fee waiver of your court fees; and
4. If you are filing a joint application, your marriage must have been in Canada or you were issued an electronic marriage certificate from a foreign jurisdiction.

The cost to file a joint application is $632. The cost to file a simple divorce application is $212.

The court forms used to apply for a divorce online remain the same as before. For both simple and joint divorce applications you are required to file a Form 8A.

Assuming all of your documentation has been properly processed, it typically takes three to four months from filing to have your divorce issued. Once the divorce is granted an email of the divorce order will be sent to you by the court. If you require a divorce certificate, you will need to wait 31 days after the divorce is granted before being able to apply for the divorce certificate.

Please note that if you are seeking child support, spousal support or an equalization payment, and your spouse does not consent to this in a joint divorce, you will not be able to use the online filing system. In such cases, your family matter would be classified as ‘complex’ and you will need to go through the traditional process of litigation. Prior to doing so, please get in touch with a lawyer for legal advice.

For more information about obtaining a divorce or family law matters, please contact our Toronto divorce lawyer here.

NOTICE AND DISCLAIMER: The material posted on this website is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. If you need legal advice, please consult with a family lawyer

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Helpful Resources:

Divorce and Separation
Family Justice Services
Child Custody and Access
Spousal Support
Child Support
Division or Equalization of Family Property
Treatment of a Matrimonial Home
Enforcement of Support Payments
Child Protection
Child Adoption