Recognition of Foreign Divorces

Under Family Law, the Divorce Act governs the recognition of foreign divorces. It requires one of the spouses to be ‘ordinarily resident’ in the specific country before obtaining the divorce. You can remarry in Canada only once your foreign divorce has been successfully recognized in Canada.

Process for Recognizing a Foreign Divorce

An authorization needs to be obtained from the Registrar General in Ontario. Getting this is mandatory before you can apply to the Ontario government for issuance of a marriage license. Documents to be submitted to the office of the Registrar General include:

  • An application for marriage license jointly completed by you and your new spouse
  • Notarized copy of the divorce order or the original divorce order (a court certified translated divorce order copy will be required in cases where the order is not in English or French)
  • Statement of Sole Responsibility completed by you and your new spouse; the statement claims that you and your spouse understand that a new marriage license has no bearing on recognition of a foreign divorce by an Ontario Court
  • A legal opinion letter issued by a lawyer, with an opinion to recognize the foreign divorce to be valid in Ontario with supporting reasons therein; letter needs to be addressed to you and your new spouse

On submission of the above documents, the authorization is assigned by the Registrar General to obtain the marriage license. You are now eligible to remarry in Ontario. Once you have submitted these documents, the Registrar General will provide an authorization allowing you to obtain a marriage license. Only then will you be free to remarry in Ontario.

How We Can Help

At Nanda & Associate Lawyers, our exceptional divorce lawyers take the time to understand your specific circumstances and provide tailored and customized solutions to them. Many legal complexities exist in recognizing foreign divorces and an experienced divorce lawyer can help you navigate better. Our Mississauga Divorce Lawyers are available for a consultation. Come and experience our quality legal counsel and personalized care we give to each client.

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