In order to file for divorce in Winnipeg, you or your spouse must currently reside in Manitoba and have lived there for at least 12 months. If one spouse has committed cruelty or adultery against the other, divorce proceedings can begin right away; for a no-fault divorce, papers can be filed whenever you like but the divorce will not be finalized until you've been living separately for at least 12 months. Within these restrictions, Manitoba's divorce procedures are fairly straightforward and easy to follow.
Purchase the necessary forms. You'll need a Petition, an Affidavit for Divorce of Service, an Affidavit of Petitioner's Evidence, a Requisition, and a draft Divorce Judgment. You may order them online at the Government of Manitoba's e-commerce site.
Fill out your forms in full. Compile them and gather the other materials you may need to file with the court clerk. One required item will be your marriage certificate or a certified copy from the province that issued the certificate. Other required materials may include child support documents or financial statements. These additional required documents will depend on the circumstances of your divorce and will be specified in your paperwork.
Visit the Winnipeg Court of Queen's Bench Centre closest to you to file your divorce documents with the court clerk. There is a mandatory filing fee. Fee information is available in the Manitoba Courts Family Division FAQ, along with and a list of Manitoba court locations.
Enlist someone to serve your spouse with divorce papers--you may not do this yourself. You can ask a trusted friend or family member to deliver the papers to your spouse, or you can hire a process server. Whoever serves your spouse with the papers must sign an Affidavit of Service officially stating that he has done so. There are fees for professional process service and for the signing of the Affidavit of Service.
Attend your court divorce hearing if one is scheduled. If your divorce is uncontested, you may not need to appear in court.
Order a Certificate of Divorce once your divorce has been granted. You may request the certificate by mail or in person from the Court of Queen's Bench Centre that finalized your divorce. There will be a fee--fee information is available in the Manitoba Courts Family Division FAQ.
Items you will need
- Petition for divorce
- Affidavit for divorce of service
- Affidavit of petitioner's evidence
- Draft divorce judgment
- Marriage certificate or certified copy
- Filing fees
- Though it's possible to file your own divorce papers in Winnipeg, the process will probably go more smoothly with the services or advice of an attorney. See the Manitoba Courts Family Division FAQ for information on how to find a divorce lawyer in Winnipeg.
- If you feel you need help with the divorce proceedings but can't afford or don't wish to hire a lawyer, you can employ a more affordable legal service such as Candivorce.ca or Divorceonline.ca.
- Some of the papers you must file will most likely be affidavits, which are forms that must be signed in the presence of someone authorized to take legal oaths. Wait to sign these forms until you file your paperwork with the court clerk, there will be someone at the clerk's office who has this authorization. There is a fee for this service.
- Neither this article nor any of the listed references and resources constitute legal advice or are a substitute for legal advice. You should at least consult with an attorney before filing for divorce.
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