Don’t Delay! There Are Deadlines for Claiming Your Legal Rights

May 15, 2013
Ron Shulman

Article written by Ron Shulman

If  you and your spouse decide to separate and divorce, you become understandably pre-occupied with establishing your new post-divorce lives, and of course with tending to the needs of your children. This means that you may not always be focused on you should be – and you may even neglect to take steps until it’s too late.

If you have promptly hired Shulman Law Firm to represent you, then you will be guided in a timely manner through all the legal steps that lead to your divorce.  But for those who delay, or who choose not to obtain legal representation, it can be a frequently-overlooked fact that under Ontario Family Law there are specific deadlines — most notably for asserting rights relating to equalization of net family property between spouses.

As I have written before, under the Ontario Family Law Act, if you and your spouse are separated (and there is no reasonable prospect that you will recommence living together), then you can embark on the legislated process to equalize your net family property.    You have to bring an application to the court, which is entitled to make a determination as to your respective entitlement in connection with equalization.

However – and this is something many people don’t realize – there is a time-limit for bringing this kind of application.  Specifically, an application in connection with equalization cannot be brought after the earliest of:

  • two years after the day your marriage is terminated by divorce;
  • six years after the day you and your spouse separate and there is no reasonable prospect that you will live together again; and
  • six months after one of you dies.

Generally speaking, if you neglect to bring an application within the appropriate deadline, then you will have lost your right to do so – usually irrevocably.    Courts are usually very strict on this.

At Shulman Law Firm, we can give you advice on how to bring a timely application to assert your equalization rights.  Call us for a consultation.