frequently asked questions


Frequently Asked Questions
About Divorce & Marriage Separation

What are the steps my lawyer will take once I have hired him/ her?

#1 – Contacting your spouse or his/her lawyer The first step your family law lawyer will be taking in your matter will be to contact your spouse or your spouse’s lawyer in writing to advise that he/she has been retained to represent you. In this letter, your lawyer may also identify the issues in dispute, address… Read more »

Who Gets “Legal Custody” of the Family Pet After a Divorce?

Amidst the decisions that need to be made before and during a divorce, one potentially perplexing question is about who gets the family pet. It is common that both separating partners, as well as any children, have become very attached to the family pet and are not willing to part with it. The Law Unfortunately,… Read more »

What happens when both parties want to stay in the family home?

Q.  My husband and I have been married for 20 years. We have two children in high school and we both love the neighbourhood where we reside. We have decided to live separate and apart but we both want to continue living in this house. Any suggestions? A.  Congratulations to both of you for being… Read more »

Is there any Advantage to Filing for Divorce First?

In many divorce cases, it is clear to both parties what is coming. Sometimes, however, it blindsides a party and leaves the other side unprepared. If you sense that you and your partner are heading towards separation, is there a benefit to filing for divorce first? Depending on the circumstances of the relationship, you may… Read more »

How are child support payments decided during an Ontario Divorce?

Parents of a child in Ontario must provide financial support, regardless of whether or not they were married. There are a variety of ways that the level of support can be determined and calculated, which will be explored in this post. Child Support Payments in the case of a Divorce When a relationship has ended… Read more »

Cross-Canada Checkup: Property Rights on Marriage Breakdown and Death

Canadians are increasingly mobile within Canada. Former spouses relocate to a new province after a marriage breakdown to be closer to family and other support networks or to begin new employment, couples decide to retire in a province with a more moderate climate, or seniors decide to move to be closer to their children and… Read more »

Benefits of Mediation vs. Litigation

Litigation Mediation Costs The costs of litigating a divorce case vary widely, but are enormously more expensive than couples expect.   The costs of mediation are much more manageable and in control of the parties. Mediation involves only the mediator. Where experts are needed, the parties will often agree on using only one neutral expert…. Read more »

What is Arbitration?

Arbitration is an alternative dispute resolution process, where an individual or tribunal acts in a judicial capacity, by hearing evidence and rendering an Award.  In a family law setting, there is generally a single arbitrator and he/she is given jurisdiction over the subject of the dispute by contract, namely an arbitration agreement.  The arbitrator then… Read more »

What is involved in a Common Law/Cohabitation Separation in Canada?

There is a common misconception that the only difference between common law and married spouses is a “legal piece of paper”. The reality is the treatment of common law spouses is very different from that of married spouses in many significant ways. The starting point is to clarify the use of the words “common law”… Read more »

What Happens in Divorce Mediation?

Instead of litigating the issues arising from separation, separating spouses can choose to agree to mediation.  Mediation is a voluntary, confidential and private process conducted by a neutral and trained third party mediator.  It provides parties the opportunity to custom make their own solutions to both financial and parenting problems and is a great way… Read more »