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What are the financial implications of divorce in Ontario?

Divorce can be a daunting and emotionally stressful process in Ontario. When thinking about divorce it is important to consider all the financial implications that come with it. This includes the previously laid out agreements and contracts, the cost of divorce, the division of property, child support and spousal support. The financial implications of divorce are unique to each relationship however, speaking with an experienced lawyer can help you ensure that you are being properly represented during the divorce proceedings.

Domestic Contracts

A domestic contract is a written document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of both spouses. There are different forms of domestic contracts in Ontario that can affect the financial implications of a divorce. These include marriage contracts, separation agreements, cohabitation agreements and arbitration agreements. All these domestic contracts outline the rights and responsibilities of both spouses. This can include the division of property and assets, child support, spousal support or negotiated terms.

If there is a previously negotiated contract that outlines the rights and responsibilities of each spouse, the financial implications of divorce are more clearly laid out than if a contract was not previously signed. However, these contracts are not required in Ontario. The ability to negotiate a contract in a divorce may depend on the willingness of a partner to negotiate the terms of a contract.

Cost of Divorce

The costs associated with divorce vary depending on the legal fees associated with retaining a lawyer and the costs associated with court. The needs of each couple when starting divorce proceedings will vary.

The cost of retaining an experienced lawyer can be daunting for many, however, having a lawyer that takes the time to understand your unique needs is important to ensure your success in the divorce proceedings. Epstein and associates offer free consultations for new clients to help you understand your rights and obligations.

The cost of court in Ontario depends on what is being filed and where it is being filed. In Ontario, the Ontario Court of Justice has no costs associated with the cases it hears. These cases include child support, spousal support, custody, restraining orders, enforcement, and many others. However, the Superior Court of Justice hears divorce cases, dividing property, child support, spousal support, custody, and many other cases.

The Superior Court of Justice has filing fees starting at $214.00 for divorce proceedings, however, each filing and response is an additional fee. The process of understanding which court is appropriate and filing correctly is both emotionally stressful and confusing, however, an experienced lawyer can help you understand and navigate this process without the risk of additional unnecessary costs and stress.

Other Financial Implications of Divorce


Other financial implications to consider when divorcing are the division of property, children, and spousal support. In Ontario, several things are considered property that must be divided including homes, cars, pensions, businesses, furniture, and money. For property that was acquired before the marriage, they will still be split equally between partners. For some this may mean a loss or a gain of property or equal value. It is important to speak with an experienced lawyer about your options.

All property will be divided equally between partners when divorcing unless there is a previous arrangement or a separation agreement that outlines how you will separate your property. It is important to speak with an experienced lawyer when dividing property to ensure your needs are being advocated for.


Another factor that may have financial implications for one spouse is child support payments. The appointment of child support to one spouse is not an automatic process. This must be negotiated between spouses’ lawyers either in a separation agreement or in court. The amount of child support to be paid will be different for each couple however, it is calculated based on the number of children, the province or territory where the paying spouse lives, and the annual income of the paying parent.

To determine if you are eligible for child support payments, you can speak with an experienced lawyer to understand your rights and responsibilities.

Spousal Support

Spousal support is another potential financial implication of divorce, however, as with child support, you must apply for spousal support, and it is only appointed if you meet the eligibility criteria. If spousal support is granted, the spouse with the higher income will pay a determined amount to the spouse with a lower income. The requirements of proof and the amount of spousal support will vary depending on each unique divorce. Speaking with an experienced lawyer can help you understand the benefits and risks of asking for spousal support.

This blog is made available by the law firm publisher, Epstein & Associates, for educational purposes. It provides general information and a general understanding of the law but does not provide specific legal advice. Any specific questions about your legal concerns please contact us now and speak to an expert today.