Posted on July 8, 2013 · Posted in Blog

How to Divorce in British Columbia

how to divorce in bc

Getting Your Divorce Documents

There are two parts to divorce: 1) resolving things such as dividing your assets and liabilities, child support, spousal support, etc., and 2) getting the divorce documents. This article presumes you’ve dealt with the issues and you just need the divorce documents.

This information is important if you are going through, or contemplating going through, divorce. It is not intended to be legal advice. If you require legal advice, you should seek out a trusted, ethical lawyer.

If you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse were married, then getting a divorce order is the only way to end your marriage in British Columbia. You have to file a “Notice of Family Claim” in the BC Supreme Court – even if you and your ex-spouse agree on everything and all issues have been settled. Regardless of all other possible issues, if you have kids, you need to take care of their interests first.

Living separately for one year or more can be used as a trigger to request the divorce.

So, how do you define “separation?J.P. Boyd, the well-known family law lawyer, says “Separation is simple: the parties must simply start living ‘separate and apart’ from each other, whether under the same roof or in separate homes. Contrary to popular opinion, you do not need to see a lawyer, sign something, or file some sort of document in court to obtain a separation. You just need to call it quits and tell your spouse that it’s over.” 

There are two other triggers you can use to request the divorce:

  • divorce certificate2Adultery by one of you which has not been forgiven, and
  • Physical and/or mental cruelty that has not been forgiven.

Residency Rule

With regards to residency, at least one of you must have lived in BC for at least 12 months before you apply.

If your BC Supreme Court divorce forms which you file are in order and you’ve resolved your issues, especially regarding the children, the judge or master will most likely grant you the divorce without you having to go to court. It is easiest if you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse have something in writing regarding the children. Read about the 4 most important things to be considered when divorcing with children in BC.

Applying for a divorce can be a frustrating and bureaucratic nightmare.

There is no simple divorceonly complicated and uncomplicated.

Remember: you have a right to be divorced and you don’t need your spouse to agree to a divorce.


On the Doorstep of Divorce?
Give us a call at 250.707.0928, or request a consultation.

divorce mediation kelownaAbout Kelowna Divorce Mediation Services

We are not expensive lawyers; we are family divorce mediators.  Our boutique divorce mediation firm has become Kelowna’s first choice when dealing with separation and divorce, and beyond. It is possible to reduce stress, time and conflict. Our mediation model educates and empower our clients, so that when you leave you have a document that will stand the test of time.

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