Divorce & Separation

Divorce signifies the end of not only a marriage, but often of jointly held dreams of a future together. Individuals often are of the understanding that a divorce is easy to obtain. In fact, unless a party has no assets, income or children, the opposite is true. Below is a list of commonly used terms in the divorce process.

ADULTERY
Adultery is one of the ways, although rarely used, to establish a marital breakdown.

CERTIFICATE OF DIVORCE
The actual piece of paper that officially describes the termination of the marriage. It is needed as proof of the divorce in order to remarry and should be kept in a safe place.

COHABITATION BEFORE MARRIAGE
Cohabitation before marriage creates unique property and support rights that must be specifically claimed in any legal proceedings.

COLLUSION
An agreement or conspiracy to fabricate or suppress evidence, or to deceive the Court. If evidence to support a divorce application is the result of collusion, the application can be rejected.

CONDONATION
The forgiveness of a matrimonial offence with full knowledge of the circumstances, followed by an acceptance of the offending spouse back into the family. A forgiven offence cannot be revived at a later date as a basis for divorce. A legal opinion may be necessary to decide if a matrimonial offence has been condoned by the subsequent actions of the other spouse.

CONNIVANCE
The material misconduct of one spouse caused by, or knowingly, willfully or recklessly permitted by, the other spouse. Connivance is creating a basis for a divorce application and can result in the application being rejected.

CONTESTED DIVORCE
If either the husband or the wife disputes the grounds for divorce, or if the spouses are unable to agree on property, child care or support arrangements, in most cases the Court will not grant a divorce until these issues are resolved at trial. If the parties can reach agreement on property, child care and support, upon application, a divorce will automatically be granted by the Court after the parties have been separated for one year.

It is important to remember that often one party is “ready to move forward” when the other party is still coming to terms with the separation.

DIVORCE
The termination of the legal relationship of marriage.

DIVORCE JUDGMENT
A Court Order granting a divorce to be final within a thirty (30) day waiting period and the subsequent granting of a Certificate of Divorce. You cannot remarry until you have the Certificate of Divorce.

MARRIAGE BREAKDOWN
The grounds for legally ending a marriage under the terms of the Divorce Act, can be established in three (3) ways: through evidence that one spouse committed adultery; physical or mental cruelty; or that the spouse intentionally lived separate and apart for at least one year. The majority of all divorces are granted on the basis of a one year separation, although usually parties start the process prior to the end of the one year period.

SEPARATE
To cease living together as man and wife. It is done with the intention to end your marriage.

STATEMENT OF CLAIM FOR DIVORCE
The formal document by which one person asks the Court to dissolve his or her marriage to another and seeks corollary relief.

UNCONTESTED DIVORCE
If either the husband or the wife do not dispute the grounds for divorce, and if they are able to reach an agreement regarding child care and financial arrangements, it may be possible to ask a Justice to grant a divorce without a lengthy Court hearing. Usually a divorce is granted without having to actually appear in Court at all.



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