How Much Does A Divorce in Ontario Cost?
As per Statistics Canada in 2005 the number of divorces in Ontario were 28,805. In another survey by Statistics Canada in 2017 around 1.1 million people in Canada were currently separated or divorced from a marriage, which is about 10% of the total population of Canada. It is also interesting to note that the Costs of Divorce in Ontario varies significantly depending on whether it was Contested or Uncontested Divorce. As per market trend Legal fees for a Contested Divorce in Ontario Costs between the range of $5,750 to $15,623 for a simple matter. Complex Contested Divorces leading to trial could cost up to $81,000 or more on average and in some rare cases up to $250,000. Whereas Uncontested Divorce Certificate Ontario Costs within the range of $750 to $1549.50. In other words less than Two thousand dollars ($2,000).
The Court Fees for all Divorce Applications in Ontario Costs $632 payable in two installments of $212 at the time of filing & $420 at the time of setting the matter down for a Divorce Hearing.
Many understand that Divorce has a vast emotional cost no matter how amicable. Many couples find it very stressful to divide assets and reach closure on a relationship. While the emotional consequences are widely understood and anticipated, the financial costs are perhaps less widely known.
The important thing for any couple is to enter into divorce proceedings with full knowledge of the potential financial cost so that they don’t receive any nasty surprises.
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Do you Have a Separation Agreement?
In general, the Cost of a Divorce in Ontario will depend on whether a couple enters into it amicably with a Separation Agreement already on the table, or whether aspects of the divorce are contested.
We will explore these options and consider the financial costs of each type of Divorce.
Types of Divorce in Ontario
- Simple Divorce (Uncontested Divorce)
- Joint Divorce (Uncontested Divorce)
- Divorce with other Relief. (Usually Contested Divorce)
What Our Divorce Lawyer Can Do For You
Difference between Contested & Uncontested Divorce
The difference between contested and uncontested divorce proceedings in Canada is where both parties agree to divorce and the only issue for Court to decide is Divorce, then it will considered as uncontested.
Whereas contested divorce proceedings is where the responding spouse disagrees with the relief sought from the court such as child support, child custody, challenging the grounds of adultery or cruelty or division of property etc. In a contested divorce the court is expected to decide on issues in addition to the claim of divorce.
Uncontested Divorce Costs
Legal Fees for Uncontested simple divorce or Joint divorce
Court Fees for Divorce in Ontario Costs $632 is NOT INCLUDED. Our Divorce Lawyer Toronto fees range from $499 + HST to $750 + HST.
Basic Drafting Only
- Divorce Consultation
- Drafting of All Divorce Documents
- Court Fees Not INCLUDED
- Service of Documents Court Fees Not INCLUDED
- Divorce Consultation
- Drafting All Documents
- Court Filing
- Court Attendance
- Responding to Judge's Objections
- Service of Documents NOT INCLUDED
- Court Fees NOT INCLUDED
- 1 installment before we start work
- 2 installment before we file in court
- 3 installment before Divorce Hearing
Divorce Certificate Ontario
An uncontested divorce certificate in Ontario is significantly Simpler, Quicker and Cheaper than the alternative contested Divorce. Within 4 to 6 months the divorce process is complete.
At Shaikh Law, we charge Flat Legal Fees of $750 + HST for an Uncontested Divorce in Ontario. You will also need to pay Divorce Application Court Fees of $632. This is payable in increments. The first installment of $212 is paid when you file for divorce and the second installment of $420 is due prior to the court review and Divorce Hearing. IMPORTANT: The Court Fees for filing Divorce Application in Ontario went up in April 2019. Before April 2019 the Court Fees for Divorce was $447.
Usually, couples will have agreed on the terms of the divorce in advance by way of a Separation Agreement, with supporting financial disclosure and Independent Legal Advice.
They will merely complete the required Divorce Application Form 8A and other Court Forms such as Affidavit of Divorce Form 36 & Divorce Order Form 25Ato make it binding.
Upon Divorce Hearing The Judge Passes a Divorce Order which becomes final and binding after 30 days upon issuance of a Divorce certificate. If Couples retain a Divorce Lawyer in Toronto then there is no need for the couple to attend a court hearing.
At Shaikh Law, we only need our client to visit our office once to sign original documents. We take care of the entire process.
For an amicable divorce to be completed at a low financial cost, you would ideally agree on the division of property, child custody, alimony, and spousal support in advance by way of a Separation Agreement.
The most frustrating scenario for couples is when one half of the partnership wishes to make a Separation Agreement and achieve a low-cost divorce while the other spouse wishes to take the case to court to let a judge make a ruling on the separation, which inevitably leads to a Contested Divorce.
On the Other Hand in a Contested Divorce Certificate in Ontario, your legal bill becomes more costly, and yet it is often unavoidable if your partner is not willing to resolve the matter by way of a Separation Agreement.
In more acrimonious divorces, couples are often unable to agree about the amount of child support, how to divide custody of the children, how to share out the assets and who will pay the debts.
As per market trend for legal fees and disbursements, in a simple matter an average contested Divorce would cost a party between $5,750 to $15,623 + Tax in Ontario.
Of course, the more complicated the case, the longer the proceedings will take. This can lead to the bill rising even more steeply.
You may find that your bill can quickly rise to $20,000 to $81,000 and while rare, can reach as high as $250,000 during lengthy court cases.
How Much it Costs to Get a Divorce Certificate in Ontario?
A Divorce Certificate in Ontario can only be issued from the Court where the case was started.
It can be obtained by the party to the Divorce Proceedings or their authorized representative.
Court Fees of $24 is payable to the Minister of Finance by way of cheque, Cash, Debit or Credit Card at the time the Certificate is issued by the Court.
Articles on Divorce in Ontario
Tips to Keep Divorce Costs Low
- If your case is leaning towards contested divorce then as a divorced couple Life can become more expensive. Therefore, you probably wish to keep down your Divorce Costs as much as possible. There are some ways of doing this with a little careful planning.
- If you are still communicating well as a couple, then it is advisable to agree as much as possible in advance of your application for divorce. Even if you can’t reach an agreement, identifying the items that you disagree on in advance can also be helpful as you can seek a mediation service to carry out the negotiation in an attempt to avoid litigation.
- A family mediator will help you as a couple to resolve any issues regarding access to children, spousal support and asset division. Although you will still need to seek independent legal advice following mediation, the terms of the divorce should be agreed in advance via the mediation, making the legal process quicker and cheaper.
- Pick your battles. Decide whether your bone of contention is worth fighting for. Do you really need the newer of the two cars? While you may decide that material possessions are not worth incurring a substantial legal bill for, the custody of your children probably is.
- Despite the legal fees, getting a divorce lawyer in Ontario can actually save you money. Attempting to navigate the family law courts yourself can be costly in both time and money. Choose wisely and save yourself money.
- Get organized and be prepared to provide a well-compiled file of documents to your lawyer. Your bill can spiral if your divorce lawyer is missing information and needs to keep asking for new documents.
- Keep court time to a minimum. Choose an experienced divorce lawyer in Ontario who knows how to expedite the process.
- If you qualify for legal aid, then you may be able to access a free, or cheaper, lawyer. The province’s legal aid department will be able to advise you whether or not you qualify for this service.
- Take advice on tax optimization to ensure that your personal funds are not included in the division of assets list.
- If you cannot afford to retain a Lawyer then consider apply for Legal Aid Certificate to cover your lawyer’s Legal Fees and Divorce Certificate Ontario costs. If you are eligible financially Legal Aid Ontario will issue with a certificate to be represented by a Lawyer.
It takes a little forward planning, but a prenuptial agreement or marriage contract drawn up by a Family Lawyer in Ontario can make life a lot easier, and cheaper, if your marriage does end in divorce.