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Can I get a divorce right away?

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Can I get a divorce right away?

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Not usually. Under Canadian law, to be entitled to get a divorce there must be a “breakdown” of your marriage. This threshold is met once you and your spouse have lived separate and apart for at least one year. However — less commonly — a marriage breakdown can also occur where either:

  • Your spouse committed adultery, and you did not live together with him or her for more than 90 days after discovering it
  • Your spouse was physically or mentally cruel to you, to the point where continued cohabitation would be intolerable.

These days it is very rare for couples to apply for divorce under these two less common grounds, since proving either of them can be time-consuming and therefore more costly. It is easier to simply rely on the one-year separation period.

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