When our Ontario readers think about the many different legal issues in a divorce case, it can be, understandably, quite daunting. After all, not only do those who go through a divorce need to face the emotional aspect of the process, but there are the legal issues that must be addressed as well. How can ex-couples get through this? Well, like many people do, it might be best to make a list.
Making a list of all of the possible issues that might come up in a divorce case can help one focus on the step-by-step process of getting the divorce case started, working through the issues and then coming to a final resolution of the case. For those with minor children, the issues that deal with the children are probably the primary place to begin. Divorce legal issues involving the minor children can include: child custody, both legal and physical custody; child support; visitation for the non-custodial parent; and even visitation for grandparents.
Next, there is property division. Since this issue can affect the financial health of the divorcing couple for years after the divorce is finalized, it is an issue that can become quite contentious. Begin by considering all assets, including: real estate; business assets; retirement accounts; vehicles; and bank accounts, among other possibilities. It is also important to consider debts as well. Once a full picture of the couple’s financial status is in view, the property division process can begin.
Perhaps, the most contentious issue for divorcing couples is alimony, also commonly known now as “spousal support.” The initial issue is whether or not alimony will be granted at all in the divorce and then, from there, how much and how long the alimony will be paid.