Getting a divorce can be time-consuming, emotionally exhausting and expensive, especially if you choose to avail the services of a lawyer. But there are situations where filing for divorce without a lawyer can be a more feasible option. If you and your spouse were not married for long, do not have any minor children and very few assets then it is worth considering ending things legally without a lawyer. Couples seeking a mutual divorce, and are in agreement regarding child custody, a division of property, child and spousal support amounts may also consider getting a divorce without a lawyer.
If your case is uncomplicated then the question to consider is ‘can I apply for divorce without a lawyer?’ A self-filing divorce is definitely less expensive than one involving lawyers but may not be the right choice for everyone. Filing for divorce is quite easy provided both you and your spouse have mutually agreed to it and the responsibilities and obligations associated with it. However, you will require the services of a lawyer if there are complications, substantial assets or liabilities which need to be divided and/or child custody issues.
You will need to assess your situation and whether you are the right candidate for filing for divorce without a lawyer. You can only do so
- If both you and your spouse have mutually agreed to the divorce, and the divorce is going to be uncontested.
- Your spouse has not hired a lawyer.
- There are none or very few marital assets that need to be divided.
- Spousal Support is not required or the amount has been agreed upon mutually.
- Custody and parenting of the children have been mutually agreed upon.
- Neither of you has any substantial financial investments.
- There is no history of adultery or violence in the marriage.
Before deciding whether you require a lawyer, a divorce paralegal or choose to self-file for your divorce, it is advisable to talk to your spouse. If both of you agree that the divorce can be filed amicably then you can consider doing it on your own or hiring a paralegal who can help you with the paperwork and filing. However, if both you and your spouse are not in agreement over the terms of divorce then it would be sensible to seek out a mediator who can help you resolve those issues. You will also need to check whether the province you are filing for divorce in, allows you to get a divorce without a lawyer.
In Alberta, you can file for divorce without a lawyer and even if you decide to self-file it is advisable to consult a lawyer before doing so. There could be important decisions pertaining to child custody and support, financial issues and property that you may require guidance on. You may also need a legal consultation to ensure that the agreement between you and your spouse is binding. Alberta also has a requirement of residency which means you need to have been a resident in the Province for at least one year before filing for divorce. A divorce can be a trying time for any couple and apart from the breakdown of the marriage, the legality and complications associated with it can be very intimidating. You will need to assess your situation before deciding which method is most suitable for you.
If you’re looking for a divorce in alberta without a laywer, get in touch with us.