How Long it Takes to Get a Divorce in Ontario

One of the most common questions is How Long it Takes to Get a Divorce in Ontario?

Uncontested Simple Divorce or Uncontested Joint Divorce usually takes between 4 to 6 months to be finalized.

Uncontested Divorce is only to be filed when you are only seeking Divorce Order and no other relief, such as Child Custody or Child Support etc.

Divorce Clearance Certificate

When you file your Uncontested Divorce, you would need to wait for a minimum of 1 to 2 months for the clearance certificate to be issued from the Central Registry of Divorce in Ottawa. The Clearance Certificate can be delayed if similar name applications have been filed in another province or name on the marriage certificate is different from the name on the divorce Application.

Service of Documents

Service of Divorce Application is required if Uncontested Simple Divorce is filed (Learn the Difference between different Types of Divorce).  It would take about 1 to 3 weeks for the process server to serve the documents and submit the original affidavit of Service, provided the other party is reachable and co-operative.

This could be delayed if the Respondent does not co-operate, which could mean that a motion for substitutive service would be filed in court, leading to further delay of 1 to 2 months.

Presuming the Respondent was served within 1 month from the date of filing the divorce, then the Respondent would 30 days to file his/her answer if served within Canada and 60 days if the Respondent was served outside Canada.

Therefore it would be prudent to say that you may need to wait for 3 months until the matter is ready to be sent to the Judge for Final Hearing.

Divorce Hearing

Once, the Divorce Clearance Certificate is received and the Respondent has been not filed his/her answer within 1 or 2 months from the date of service, the Court Registrar send the file for a hearing before a Divorce Judge, which could take 3 to 4 weeks before the file is sent back.

Divorce Certificate

Once you have received a Divorce Order you would need to wait for 30 days from the Date of the Divorce Order to receive a Divorce Certificate from Court. The Divorce would only become final after 30 days.

Uncontested Divorce in Ontario

Simple | Joint

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Divorce with Other Relief

Contested Divorce or Divorce with other Relief such as Child Support, Child Custody, Division of Property or Spousal Support could take several months if not a year more before Divorce Order is granted.

In a Contested Divorce, a party can apply to the court by filing a motion to separate the relief of Divorce from other relief claimed. You would need to speak to a Divorce Lawyer to identify if you will be eligible to have your claim for Divorce separated from the remaining case. It is possible but not always easy to get an order to separate Divorce from other claims.

A Contested Divorce is not only time consuming but can also be costly.

On average a Simple Contested Divorce could cost up to $5,000 + Tax

Moderately Complicated Divorce Could Cost approximately $7,000 + Tax.

It is common for Parties to enter into a Separation Agreement in Ontario to enable them to File for an Uncontested Divorce.

A Divorce Certificate can be collected after 30 days from the date Divorce Order has been issued.

Divorce With Other Relief

Child Custody, Support or Division of Property

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