Things you might ask (Your questions, answered.)

Divorce is a complicated matter. Below we have mapped out some answers to our most-asked questions so that you can understand the system better and empower you with the confidence to move forward. If you have additional questions, please send them to us at welcome@LeapDivorceSolutions.com or use the form below.

*(Leap! Divorce Solutions is a divorce assistance provider, with mediation specialists. Materials on this website are intended for information purpose only. Nothing on this website should be construed in any way as legal advice or initiation of a mediator-client relationship. Please contact a family lawyer if legal assistance or advice is required. )* 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What if I have not yet told my spouse I want a separation and divorce?

Every step of the Leap! Divorce Solutions process requires that both spouses be involved. Therefore, you will need to discuss your desire for a separation and divorce with your spouse before scheduling an initial consultation. We are happy to answer very general questions for anyone or to suggest ideas for opening the conversation with your spouse. However, if you have specific questions about your situation, we must answer them with both of you present to ensure our neutrality throughout the process.

What are the grounds for divorce?

Leap! Divorce Solutions has included the relevant section from the Divorce Act (Canada) to answer the question. Our mediator is available to facilitate the crucial conversation to proceed with a plan for a separation and divorce.

“8. (1) A court of competent jurisdiction may, on application by either or both spouses, grant a divorce to the spouse or spouses on the grounds that there has been a breakdown of their marriage.

(2) Breakdown of a marriage is established only if:

1. the spouses have lived separate and apart for at least one year immediately preceding the determination of the divorce proceeding and were living separate and apart at the commencement of the proceeding; or

2. The spouse against whom the divorce proceeding is brought has, since celebration of the marriage,

a. committed adultery, or

b. treated the other spouse with physical or mental cruelty of such a kind as to render intolerable the continued cohabitation of the spouses.”

How much does Leap! Divorce Solutions charge?

Leap! Divorce Solutions has a systematic process for assessing the unique needs of each couple. The cost varies depending on your circumstances. At the end of the consultation, the mediator will calculate an upfront price. These upfront prices start at $1,500 — though the precise amount depends on your unique situation.

How long will it take to complete my mediation process?

There is no simple answer to this question. The Leap! Divorce Solutions process typically takes 12 weeks to complete. However, this timeframe can vary greatly depending on the couple’s readiness to move forward, items that need to be addressed, and local laws.

What if we do not reach agreement?

At any time during the mediation process, each person has the option to say, “enough.” Leap! Divorce Solutions will not force you to “stay at the table.” That being said, the Leap! Divorce Solutions team know the kinds of things which impede collaborative resolution discussions and we have designed our methodology to help continue movement toward the goals you each set at the outset. There are many ups and downs through the process. We do everything within our power to predict potential obstacles and get you through them.

What if my spouse is not willing to mediate?

The conversation about whether to mediate has several starting points. How have you been opening the conversation? Have you both had a chance to independently look at the Leap! Divorce Solutions’ website? Is there a particular issue that is creating resistance?

Offering several separation and divorce options in written form for your spouse to consider can be helpful. However, in the end, each person must come to his or her own conclusion. At Leap! Divorce Solutions, both people must come to the table, even if it is difficult to do so. Your spouse may not be ready for this. That is ok — sometimes, as people get started with other options, there is a moment when they see more value in the Leap! Divorce Solutions’ process and come around again.

What if my spouse lives in another province?

Leap! Divorce Solutions may be able to help, but there are several questions we will need answered: How long have you been separated? Where did you last live as a married couple and how long ago was that and for how long? Are there children involved? Where are they living? Spouses living in different provinces does complicate matters. Contact us for more details on the next steps.

What if we have children?

Leap! Divorce Solutions has included the relevant sections of the Divorce Act (Canada) to help you answer the question.

Section 11(1)(b) of the Divorce Act (Canada) states,

In a divorce proceeding, it is the duty of the court to satisfy itself that reasonable arrangements have been made for the support of any children of the marriage, having regard to the applicable guidelines, and, if such arrangements have not been made, to stay the granting of the divorce until such arrangements are made.

Section 2(1) defines a “child of the marriage” as:

“child of the marriage” means a child of two spouses or former spouses who, at the material time,

(a) is under the age of majority and who has not withdrawn from their charge, or

(b) is the age of majority or over and under their charge but unable, by reason of illness, disability or other cause, to withdraw from their charge or to obtain the necessaries of life.

Section 2(1) also defines “age of majority” as:

“age of majority”, in respect of a child, means the age of majority as determined by the laws of the province where the child ordinarily resides, or, if the child ordinarily resides outside of Canada, eighteen years of age

What all this means is that there is a connection between the payment of child support and the granting of a divorce. Leap! Divorce Solutions is here to map a plan with the amount of child support being paid that meet or exceed the applicable table amount set out in the Federal Child Support Guidelines.

Do you need a Separation Agreement to get a divorce?

This is a legal question that only a lawyer can answer for you. At Leap! Divorce Solutions, our Mediation Divorce Specialists are here to help you develop a plan. Mediation usually involves anywhere from one to ten or more mediation sessions, depending upon the complexity and number of the issues. All of the communications made during mediation are “off the record”, meaning that neither party is allowed to subsequently reveal communications made during mediation to a judge or arbitrator if an agreement is not reached. The purpose is to encourage a free and healthy exchange of ideas during the mediation process without fear that the ideas or proposals could be used against you subsequently in court.

If an agreement or agreements are reached during mediation, the mediator typically translates the provisions into a resolution plan. The parties then review the resolution plan with their lawyers who provide legal advice and practical suggestions. Very often, the agreements reached in mediation are translated into a legally binding contract called a Separation Agreement. Until this occurs, the agreements reached in mediation are not binding on either party.

What if we have no children?

Many other factors compel couples to use Leap! Divorce Solutions. Property and debt division, spousal support, extended family issues, and many other considerations can be difficult to resolve amicably without assistance. The best way to determine if Leap! Divorce Solutions can be helpful to your unique situation is to schedule a free initial consultation.

What if we have no assets?

Separation and divorce is about a lot more than assets. Contacting us for an initial consultation is the best way to determine if our Leap! Divorce Solutions process is right for you.

Why do I need a financial plan?

Creating a financial plan helps you see the big picture and set long and short-term life goals, a crucial step in mapping out your financial future. When you have a financial plan, it is easier to make financial decisions and stay on track to meet your goals.

Financial planning helps you determine your short and long-term financial goals and create a balanced plan to meet those goals.

Here are reasons why financial planning – with the help of a Financial Specialist – will get you where you want to be.

  • Income:  It is possible to manage income more effectively through planning.  Managing income helps you understand how much money you will need for tax payments, other monthly expenditures and savings.
  • Cash Flow: Increase cash flows by carefully monitoring your spending patterns and expenses. Tax planning, prudent spending and careful budgeting will help you keep more of your hard-earned cash.
  • Capital:  An increase in cash flow, can lead to an increase in capital.  Allowing you to consider investments to improve your overall financial well-being.
  • Family Security: Providing for your family’s financial security is an important part of the financial planning process. Having the proper insurance coverage and policies in place can provide peace of mind for you and your loved ones.
  • Investment:  A proper financial plan considers your personal circumstances, objectives and risk tolerance. It acts as a guide in helping choose the right types of investments to fit your needs, personality, and goals.
  • Standard of Living: The savings created from good planning can prove beneficial in difficult times. For example, you can make sure there is enough insurance coverage to replace any lost income should a family breadwinner become unable to work.
  • Financial Understanding: Better financial understanding can be achieved when measurable financial goals are set, the effects of decisions understood, and results reviewed. Giving you a completely new approach to your budget and improving control over your financial lifestyle.
  • Assets: A nice ‘cushion’ in the form of assets is desirable. Nevertheless, many assets come with liabilities attached. So, it becomes important to determine the real value of an asset. The knowledge of settling or canceling the liabilities comes with the understanding of your finances. The overall process helps build assets that do not become a burden in the future.
  • Savings: It used to be called saving for a rainy day. However, sudden financial changes can still throw you off track. It is good to have some investments with high liquidity. These investments can be utilized in times of emergency or for educational purposes.
  • Ongoing Advice: Establishing a relationship with a Financial Specialist you can trust is critical to achieving your goals. Your financial advisor will meet with you to assess your current financial circumstances and develop a comprehensive plan customized for you.

The first step in developing your financial plan is to meet with our Financial Specialist.  At Leap!, we use a fee based structure that begins with a review of your current financial circumstances, anticipated changes, future goals, and ends in your customized plan.  Call us today to book your assessment.

When should I schedule an appointment with a Financial Specialist to complete my income taxes?

Schedule your appointment early in the year, as soon as you have received your income statements and other tax information.  This gives you and our Financial Specialist the time to resolve any questions and ensures your return(s) are completed accurately. Our Office gets very busy as the April 30th deadline nears.

How do I get a Marriage Certificate?

All divorces filed within Canada must be filed with an original Certificate of Marriage. The certificate must be the one issued to you by the government. The certificate given to you by the person performing the wedding ceremony is not be accepted by the courts.

Leap! Divorce Solutions makes it easy to obtain your original Certificate of Marriage in preparation for your divorce.

*We are, at this time, only processing Marriage Certificate applications for our clients. If you require only your Marriage Certificate, please visit Vital Certificates.

Should you have any questions regarding this service, please do not hesitate to contact us.

You will need Acrobat Reader to view the applications. If you do not have Acrobat Reader or need to upgrade your Acrobat Reader, please click on ‘Get Acrobat Reader‘ to download this free program.

More questions? Contact Leap! Divorce Solutions using the form to the right.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

ONLINE QUESTION FORM

Question? Ready to schedule an initial consultation with you and your spouse? Contact us today.

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(If you are no longer a resident in the matrimonial home, then please provide your current postal code)

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