Divorce2018-10-10T22:46:54+00:00

Divorce & Separation

Make An Appointment

Divorce Lawyers in Toronto & Mississauga

The first sign of a soured marriage is talk of divorce.  Like marriage, divorce can be an unpredictable roller coaster with many ups and downs.  You may see divorce as symbolizing the end of a loving relationship and the breakdown of the family unit.  Alternatively, you may see it as a fresh beginning with the potential of improved terms between you and your former spouse.  The challenge in extricating yourself from the marriage is to know your expectations and limits, and, more importantly, to know when to compromise and when to stand your ground.

Mahdi Leite Family Law is here to advise and guide you through every step in the most cost-effective and timely manner.

To book a free consultation in Toronto or Mississauga, please call (416) 284-2354 or email us at reception@mlfamilylaw.ca

Grounds for Divorce
Separation
Applying for Divorce

Grounds for Divorce

There are three legal grounds for divorce:

  • Spouses having been separated for twelve months. This is the most common legal reason for divorce.  The definition of “legal separation” is explained below.
  • One spouse to have committed adultery. This is rarely used as the legal ground for divorce since it requires considerable, indisputable proof.
  • Again, this is rarely used since it requires a high standard of proof.

Regardless of which ground is used for divorce, a person can begin the divorce proceeding as soon as s/he is separated from the spouse.   However, the final “divorce” (legal ending of the marriage) cannot be granted by the court until the twelve month separation period has ended (unless in exceptional circumstances involving adultery or cruelty).

There is nothing barring spouses from applying to court sooner and obtaining the court’s assistance in more urgent matters such as child custody, access and support.

Mahdi Leite Family Law is here to advise and guide you through every step in the most cost-effective and timely manner.

To book a free consultation in Toronto or Mississauga, please call (416) 284-2354 or email us at reception@mlfamilylaw.ca

Separation and “Legal Separation”

A common misconception is that there is a distinction between a “legal separation” and an ordinary “separation”.   Any time parties are living separate and apart, they are considered to be separated and the separation is “legal”.

The test for living “separate and apart” is less than exact.  The following factors will be taken into account in determining whether or not a couple is truly living separate and apart under the same roof:

  • no longer sharing the same bedroom
  • the absence of sexual relations
  • whether or not the couple do one another’s chores or eat together
  • whether or not the couple interacts with the outside world together and presents itself as a couple, etc.

Keep in mind that people can live separate and apart under the same roof – often for temporary financial reasons.  In such an instance, they can still be considered to be separated for family law purposes.

Reconciliation

Spouses can divorce after a twelve month separation period.  However, during the twelve month separation period, spouses can attempt to reconcile without necessarily interrupting their separation period.  If spouses reconcile for a period of less than ninety days, and break up again before the ninety day reconciliation period is up, their date of separation will still be considered as the same date when they first chose to live separate and apart.

Mahdi Leite Family Law is here to advise and guide you through every step in the most cost-effective and timely manner.

To book a free consultation in Toronto or Mississauga, please call (416) 284-2354 or email us at reception@mlfamilylaw.ca

Procedure for Applying for Divorce

How do you apply for divorce?

There are legal documents that must be filled in and then filed at court to begin the divorce process or divorce application.

The party who applies for divorce is referred to as the Applicant.  The other party is referred to as the Respondent.  The Applicant sets out all of his or her claims in the Application for Divorce.  The Applicant can ask for a simple divorce or s/he can ask for a number of issues to be addressed, including:

  • custody of the children
  • access to the children
  • child support
  • spousal support
  • division of property
  • exclusive possession of the matrimonial home
  • restraining order
  • costs, etc.

The Respondent also has an opportunity to respond and set out his or her own claims in the Answer.  Both parties will also prepare Financial Statements setting out their incomes, expenses, real property, assets and debts.

Once all the paperwork has been prepared, documents are formally exchanged and filed at court.

Since there is usually opportunity for settlement at every step, the vast majority of cases never reach trial.  Though trials may provide parties the opportunity to air their grievances in court, it is preferable to negotiate and settle, if possible (assuming a fair settlement can be reached).   Fortunately, family law courts encourage parties to explore opportunities for settlement at every step, even if proceedings reach trial.

Mahdi Leite Family Law is here to advise and guide you through every step in the most cost-effective and timely manner.

To book a free consultation in Toronto or Mississauga, please call (416) 284-2354 or email us at reception@mlfamilylaw.ca

Make An Appointment

Mahdi Leite Family Law will provide you with the information and legal tools you need. To book a free consultation in Toronto or Mississauga, please call 416-284-2354 or email us at reception@mlfamilyLaw.ca

A new path lies ahead. Mahdi Leite Family Law will guide you.

request a consultation
Call Now Button