The cost of your divorce will vary depending on the complexity and urgency of your individual case. Being proactive and doing some research can help you make more informed decisions, and reduce your legal fees.
But where do you start? And which resources can you trust? If you live in Ontario, you can use any of the following free resources to help you get through your divorce.
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Family Law Information Centres
Sometimes you just need to speak with a person. You can do that at a Family Law Information Centre (FLIC). Located in family courts across Ontario, FLICs offer free assistance and information to people who are new to the court system, or who do not have a family lawyer.
In addition to providing pamphlets and other publications on issues related to separation and divorce and child protection matters, you can find an Advice Lawyer from Legal Aid Ontario at FLIC offices during designated times to provide summary legal advice. An Information and Referral Coordinator will also be available at certain times to offer information on alternative dispute resolution options, issues related to separation and divorce, and community resources.
Family Law Information Program
The Family Law Information Program is a free online resource for families, former spouses and partners about to enter the family justice system. This program aims to help you make more informed decisions about common legal and emotional issues that may arise at the end of a relationship.
It covers topics including child custody, support payments, shared parenting, and property settlements, and uses audio and text to explain legal definitions and processes as clearly as possible.
Family Law Rules Forms
You can access digital versions of the Family Law Rules forms through this website, created and maintained by the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General. Even if you have no intentions of filling out any or all of these forms on your own, it may be helpful to review them to better understand what information your lawyer will need from you.
Steps to Justice
Steps to Justice is a valuable online resource. Led by Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO), in partnership with the Ministry of the Attorney General, the Superior Court of Justice, the Ontario Court of Justice, Social Justice Tribunals Ontario, the Ontario Bar Association, Legal Aid Ontario, The Law Society of Upper Canada, and community and specialty legal clinics, it presents reliable and easy to understand step-by-step information about family law.
Your Law: Ontario Law Simplified
The Law Society of Ontario has created a set of YouTube videos to help people better understand complex legal issues. There is one that focuses specifically on custody and child support, and another that covers spousal support and property.
Department of Justice
You can access a lot of free, credible information on the Department of Justice’s Family Law site. It offers guidance on how to create a parenting plan, information on where to start if you’re thinking of divorce or separation, and even gives you access to a child support online calculator.
While none of this should be taken as legal advice, the site can help answer some of your general family law questions.
Shulman Law Firm’s Family Law and Divorce Guides
We’ve taken extra care to put together practical guides that answer the big questions that most of our clients have.
Find comprehensive information about separation agreements, spousal support, alternative dispute resolution and more.