How to File for Divorce in British Columbia in the Year 2023
Divorce in British Columbia can be one of two varieties:
When spouses aren't unanimous in their desire to part ways, it's called a "contested divorce." Disputes over child support, property distribution, or the care of any children involved can also lead to a contentious divorce. In a contested divorce, one partner must present evidence to the court that supports the other's claims that the marriage should be ended. They have the burden of proof in court to show that the marriage has broken down irretrievably due to adultery, a year of separation, or spousal abuse.
When a couple decides to divorce without fighting, they sign a separation agreement outlining the terms of the divorce. Divorces of this type typically move through the courts more quickly and at lower cost to the parties.
Whether the divorce is contested or uncontested, there are specific requirements that must be met in British Columbia in order to obtain a valid divorce. As we mentioned up top, you and your spouse need to have been BC residents for at least a year before filing for divorce. Once you're both settled in British Columbia, you'll need to prove to the court that your marriage is legally over. Proof of separation for at least one year is usually sufficient in contested divorce cases. Abuse and adultery are two additional grounds that can be presented to the court. Doing so increases the likelihood that the court will grant you a divorce.
When the divorce is uncontested, this step is usually quick and easy. If a couple is able to settle their differences and petition the court for a divorce, the process can be completed quickly. Much less effort is required, and the cost and time involved is drastically reduced.
Divorce in British Columbia necessary legal steps for both parties and their counsel to take before proceeding
- Disputes over things like child support, custody, and the division of assets and debts must be resolved before an uncontested divorce can be pursued.
- Once your partner has agreed to a By filing a "Notice of Family Claim" with the Supreme Court, you can initiate divorce proceedings.
- If the divorce is contested, you will need to go through the court system to work out the details of property division, child custody, etc. When a spouse does not reply to the Notice of Family Claim, the court process can take anywhere from 6 months to 15 months, and sometimes even longer if agreements cannot be reached without a judge's order.
- Interim orders can be obtained to resolve urgent matters during the court process, but these are typically only required in lengthy, contentious cases.
The family law attorneys at Ganapathi Law - PC should be consulted if the time has come for you to initiate divorce proceedings in British Columbia. ganapathico.com today Please don't hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or need any guidance on how to proceed in your specific situation.
Since it is so simple to prove, this is the most common reason for a divorce in British Columbia. Divorce proceedings can begin in British Columbia once a couple has separated. No matter what caused their separation, if they remain apart for 12 months, a Divorce Order will be issued.
Some technical details also need to be discussed. The first is an effort at peacemaking. Even if divorce proceedings have already begun, a couple can try to reconcile by cohabitating for 90 days or less. In this case, the 12-month separation period does not need to be reset. Divorce proceedings must wait 12 months if a couple has been together for more than 90 days but has decided to separate after that time.
While waiting for the Divorce Order, couples can live together in the same residence if they can prove they are "separate and apart."
Getting a divorce in British Columbia on the grounds of adultery is trickier than on other grounds because you have to provide evidence of the adultery. You need not reveal the identity of your spouse's infidelity partner. In the same vein, you need not "catch them in the act" to have reasonable grounds to suspect adultery took place.
The most straightforward evidence of adultery is a signed affidavit from the cheating ex-spouse. After this, you can testify for discovery or go to court to prove adultery. These approaches are much more challenging than your partner's admission. Before filing for divorce on those grounds, you should talk to your lawyer at length.
The parties must take an oath that there was no conspiracy between them when filing a divorce petition based on adultery. The adulterous act must have actually taken place, and it must not have been sanctioned by the other spouse. In BC, an open marriage cannot be dissolved due to extramarital affairs.
Divorce in British Columbia is typically most challenging when pursued in this manner. According to established case law in Canada, if one spouse's level of cruelty makes living together intolerable for the other, divorce may be granted on these grounds. It is essential that you be able to provide evidence of this cruelty. Cruelty is open to interpretation and should never arise from petty disagreements.
You have a good chance of getting a divorce in British Columbia if you can show that the physical or mental cruelty you've endured was unnecessary. The court may rule against you if it determines that the cruelty in the relationship stems from factors such as the parties' bad moods. It is crucial that you get sound legal counsel before filing for divorce on these grounds.
If you're going through a divorce or legal separation in British Columbia, you'll want a lawyer you can trust to be there for you every step of the way. When you need reliable legal separation advice and representation, Ganapathi Law Group is here for you with genuine compassion and understanding. For a no-cost consultation, please get in touch with us right away.
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