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Filing for Divorce: The Basics

Going through a divorce is never easy. Whether you’ve spent one year or ten years with your spouse, deciding to end your marriage is a big decision. Have you been served divorce papers or come to a mutual decision with your spouse that it’s time to end your marriage?

If so, read on to learn about the steps to consider when going through a divorce. 

Find the Right Lawyer

You’ll want to find a divorce lawyer who can help you throughout the entire process. Your lawyer can help protect your rights and the rights of your children. In addition, your lawyer can assist with completing any forms or documents online or in court. 

The Difference Between A Contested and An Uncontested Divorce 

In Canada, there are two types for divorce: contested or uncontested. 

  • Contested divorce. This type of divorce is when spouses disagree on terms within the divorce. For example, common disagreements can include child custody and spousal support or division of assets.
  • Uncontested divorce. When both parties agree on the terms of the divorce, this is known as an uncontested divorce. There is often a separation agreement that outlines the mutual decisions based on several elements. 

If you and your spouse have agreed to move forward with your divorce, you can file a joint application for divorce. Since both parties are considered applicants, this removes the need for either person to have someone serve them divorce papers. However, an uncontested divorce is often the easiest and most cost effective scenario as it saves each person time and money by avoiding further litigation. 

Are you hoping for you and your spouse to reach an uncontested divorce? The following method can help. 

How a Mediator Can Help 

If there’s tension between both parties but the potential to resolve things without court, consider speaking with a divorce mediator or family mediator. A mediator (third-party person) can help two individuals negotiate the terms of their divorce. An alternative to family court is known as family dispute resolution (FDR). This process allows your separation and divorce to be settled without litigation, saving you time and money. In addition, in a court setting, your future is in the hands of strangers. Alternatively, in mediation, a meditator has the chance to get to know both sides on a personal level and help reach a fair agreement. 

A mediator can help both sides come to terms regarding division of property, parenting time, support and ultimately reach a formalized separation agreement. To learn more about the stages of mediation, read our blog post, “Staying Out of Court – Resolving Family Law Issues With Mediation.” 

The Importance of A Separation Agreement 

The goal in any divorce case is a separation agreement. Reaching an agreement allows both parties to look to the future. While this is often easier said than done in most cases, sometimes partners wish to divorce because they outgrew each other. Of course, if there is no conflict between the spouses, reaching a separation agreement can be an easy process. In this case, using a mediator to develop a separation agreement and avoid court is a favourable idea. However, even if you and your spouse have struggles seeing eye to eye, using a mediator to reach an agreement is beneficial for both parties. If you’re curious about the benefits of mediation, read more here

A separation agreement is a contract you’ll use for many years following your divorce, especially if you have children. For example, this document will outline topics like visitation rights, child custody and spousal support. 

Are you searching for a divorce lawyer in Toronto, contact Kelly D Jordan Family Law Firm.