Divorce Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.))

Act current to 2014-09-29 and last amended on 2014-04-01. Previous Versions

Divorce Act

R.S.C., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.)

An Act respecting divorce and corollary relief

[1986, c. 4, assented to 13th February, 1986]

SHORT TITLE

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Divorce Act.

INTERPRETATION

Marginal note:Definitions
  •  (1) In this Act,

    “age of majority”

    « majeur »

    “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;

    “appellate court”

    « cour d’appel »

    “appellate court”, in respect of an appeal from a court, means the court exercising appellate jurisdiction with respect to that appeal;

    “applicable guidelines”

    « lignes directrices applicables »

    “applicable guidelines” means

    • (a) where both spouses or former spouses are ordinarily resident in the same province at the time an application for a child support order or a variation order in respect of a child support order is made, or the amount of a child support order is to be recalculated pursuant to section 25.1, and that province has been designated by an order made under subsection (5), the laws of the province specified in the order, and

    • (b) in any other case, the Federal Child Support Guidelines;

    “child of the marriage”

    « enfant à charge »

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    • (a) is under the age of majority and who has not withdrawn from their charge, or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

    “child support order”

    « ordonnance alimentaire au profit d’un enfant »

    “child support order” means an order made under subsection 15.1(1);

    “corollary relief proceeding”

    « action en mesures accessoires »

    “corollary relief proceeding” means a proceeding in a court in which either or both former spouses seek a child support order, a spousal support order or a custody order;

    “court”

    « tribunal »

    “court”, in respect of a province, means

    • (a) for the Province of Ontario, the Superior Court of Justice,

    • (a.1) for the Province of Prince Edward Island or Newfoundland, the trial division of the Supreme Court of the Province,

    • (b) for the Province of Quebec, the Superior Court,

    • (c) for the Provinces of Nova Scotia and British Columbia, the Supreme Court of the Province,

    • (d) for the Province of New Brunswick, Manitoba, Saskatchewan or Alberta, the Court of Queen’s Bench for the Province, and

    • (e) for Yukon or the Northwest Territories, the Supreme Court, and in Nunavut, the Nunavut Court of Justice,

    and includes such other court in the province the judges of which are appointed by the Governor General as is designated by the Lieutenant Governor in Council of the province as a court for the purposes of this Act;

    “custody”

    « garde »

    “custody” includes care, upbringing and any other incident of custody;

    “custody order”

    « ordonnance de garde »

    “custody order” means an order made under subsection 16(1);

    “divorce proceeding”

    « action en divorce »

    “divorce proceeding” means a proceeding in a court in which either or both spouses seek a divorce alone or together with a child support order, a spousal support order or a custody order;

    “Federal Child Support Guidelines”

    « lignes directrices fédérales sur les pensions alimentaires pour enfants »

    “Federal Child Support Guidelines” means the guidelines made under section 26.1;

    “provincial child support service”

    « service provincial des aliments pour enfants »

    “provincial child support service” means any service, agency or body designated in an agreement with a province under subsection 25.1(1);

    “spousal support order”

    « ordonnance alimentaire au profit d’un époux »

    “spousal support order” means an order made under subsection 15.2(1);

    “spouse”

    « époux »

    “spouse” means either of two persons who are married to each other;

    “support order”

    « ordonnance alimentaire »

    “support order” means a child support order or a spousal support order;

    “variation order”

    « ordonnance modificative »

    “variation order” means an order made under subsection 17(1);

    “variation proceeding”

    « action en modification »

    “variation proceeding” means a proceeding in a court in which either or both former spouses seek a variation order.

  • Marginal note:Child of the marriage

    (2) For the purposes of the definition “child of the marriage” in subsection (1), a child of two spouses or former spouses includes

    • (a) any child for whom they both stand in the place of parents; and

    • (b) any child of whom one is the parent and for whom the other stands in the place of a parent.

  • Marginal note:Term not restrictive

    (3) The use of the term “application” to describe a proceeding under this Act in a court shall not be construed as limiting the name under which and the form and manner in which that proceeding may be taken in that court, and the name, manner and form of the proceeding in that court shall be such as is provided for by the rules regulating the practice and procedure in that court.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (4) The use in section 21.1 of the terms “affidavit” and “pleadings” to describe documents shall not be construed as limiting the name that may be used to refer to those documents in a court and the form of those documents, and the name and form of the documents shall be such as is provided for by the rules regulating the practice and procedure in that court.

  • Marginal note:Provincial child support guidelines

    (5) The Governor in Council may, by order, designate a province for the purposes of the definition “applicable guidelines” in subsection (1) if the laws of the province establish comprehensive guidelines for the determination of child support that deal with the matters referred to in section 26.1. The order shall specify the laws of the province that constitute the guidelines of the province.

  • Marginal note:Amendments included

    (6) The guidelines of a province referred to in subsection (5) include any amendments made to them from time to time.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 2, c. 27 (2nd Supp.), s. 10;
  • 1990, c. 18, s. 1;
  • 1992, c. 51, s. 46;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 1;
  • 1998, c. 30, ss. 13(F), 15(E);
  • 1999, c. 3, s. 61;
  • 2002, c. 7, s. 158(E);
  • 2005, c. 33, s. 8.

JURISDICTION

Marginal note:Jurisdiction in divorce proceedings
  •  (1) A court in a province has jurisdiction to hear and determine a divorce proceeding if either spouse has been ordinarily resident in the province for at least one year immediately preceding the commencement of the proceeding.

  • Marginal note:Jurisdiction where two proceedings commenced on different days

    (2) Where divorce proceedings between the same spouses are pending in two courts that would otherwise have jurisdiction under subsection (1) and were commenced on different days and the proceeding that was commenced first is not discontinued within thirty days after it was commenced, the court in which a divorce proceeding was commenced first has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any divorce proceeding then pending between the spouses and the second divorce proceeding shall be deemed to be discontinued.

  • Marginal note:Jurisdiction where two proceedings commenced on same day

    (3) Where divorce proceedings between the same spouses are pending in two courts that would otherwise have jurisdiction under subsection (1) and were commenced on the same day and neither proceeding is discontinued within thirty days after it was commenced, the Federal Court has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any divorce proceeding then pending between the spouses and the divorce proceedings in those courts shall be transferred to the Federal Court on the direction of that Court.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 3;
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 183.
Marginal note:Jurisdiction in corollary relief proceedings
  •  (1) A court in a province has jurisdiction to hear and determine a corollary relief proceeding if

    • (a) either former spouse is ordinarily resident in the province at the commencement of the proceeding; or

    • (b) both former spouses accept the jurisdiction of the court.

  • Marginal note:Jurisdiction where two proceedings commenced on different days

    (2) Where corollary relief proceedings between the same former spouses and in respect of the same matter are pending in two courts that would otherwise have jurisdiction under subsection (1) and were commenced on different days and the proceeding that was commenced first is not discontinued within thirty days after it was commenced, the court in which a corollary relief proceeding was commenced first has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any corollary relief proceeding then pending between the former spouses in respect of that matter and the second corollary relief proceeding shall be deemed to be discontinued.

  • Marginal note:Jurisdiction where two proceedings commenced on same day

    (3) Where proceedings between the same former spouses and in respect of the same matter are pending in two courts that would otherwise have jurisdiction under subsection (1) and were commenced on the same day and neither proceeding is discontinued within thirty days after it was commenced, the Federal Court has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any corollary relief proceeding then pending between the former spouses in respect of that matter and the corollary relief proceedings in those courts shall be transferred to the Federal Court on the direction of that Court.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 4;
  • 1993, c. 8, s. 1;
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 183.
Marginal note:Jurisdiction in variation proceedings
  •  (1) A court in a province has jurisdiction to hear and determine a variation proceeding if

    • (a) either former spouse is ordinarily resident in the province at the commencement of the proceeding; or

    • (b) both former spouses accept the jurisdiction of the court.

  • Marginal note:Jurisdiction where two proceedings commenced on different days

    (2) Where variation proceedings between the same former spouses and in respect of the same matter are pending in two courts that would otherwise have jurisdiction under subsection (1) and were commenced on different days and the proceeding that was commenced first is not discontinued within thirty days after it was commenced, the court in which a variation proceeding was commenced first has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any variation proceeding then pending between the former spouses in respect of that matter and the second variation proceeding shall be deemed to be discontinued.

  • Marginal note:Jurisdiction where two proceedings commenced on same day

    (3) Where variation proceedings between the same former spouses and in respect of the same matter are pending in two courts that would otherwise have jurisdiction under subsection (1) and were commenced on the same day and neither proceeding is discontinued within thirty days after it was commenced, the Federal Court has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any variation proceeding then pending between the former spouses in respect of that matter and the variation proceedings in those courts shall be transferred to the Federal Court on the direction of that Court.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 5;
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 183.
Marginal note:Transfer of divorce proceeding where custody application
  •  (1) Where an application for an order under section 16 is made in a divorce proceeding to a court in a province and is opposed and the child of the marriage in respect of whom the order is sought is most substantially connected with another province, the court may, on application by a spouse or on its own motion, transfer the divorce proceeding to a court in that other province.

  • Marginal note:Transfer of corollary relief proceeding where custody application

    (2) Where an application for an order under section 16 is made in a corollary relief proceeding to a court in a province and is opposed and the child of the marriage in respect of whom the order is sought is most substantially connected with another province, the court may, on application by a former spouse or on its own motion, transfer the corollary relief proceeding to a court in that other province.

  • Marginal note:Transfer of variation proceeding where custody application

    (3) Where an application for a variation order in respect of a custody order is made in a variation proceeding to a court in a province and is opposed and the child of the marriage in respect of whom the variation order is sought is most substantially connected with another province, the court may, on application by a former spouse or on its own motion, transfer the variation proceeding to a court in that other province.

  • Marginal note:Exclusive jurisdiction

    (4) Notwithstanding sections 3 to 5, a court in a province to which a proceeding is transferred under this section has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine the proceeding.

Marginal note:Exercise of jurisdiction by judge

 The jurisdiction conferred on a court by this Act to grant a divorce shall be exercised only by a judge of the court without a jury.

DIVORCE

Marginal note:Divorce
  •  (1) A court of competent jurisdiction may, on application by either or both spouses, grant a divorce to the spouse or spouses on the ground that there has been a breakdown of their marriage.

  • Marginal note:Breakdown of marriage

    (2) Breakdown of a marriage is established only if

    • (a) 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

    • (b) the spouse against whom the divorce proceeding is brought has, since celebration of the marriage,

      • (i) committed adultery, or

      • (ii) treated the other spouse with physical or mental cruelty of such a kind as to render intolerable the continued cohabitation of the spouses.

  • Marginal note:Calculation of period of separation

    (3) For the purposes of paragraph (2)(a),

    • (a) spouses shall be deemed to have lived separate and apart for any period during which they lived apart and either of them had the intention to live separate and apart from the other; and

    • (b) a period during which spouses have lived separate and apart shall not be considered to have been interrupted or terminated

      • (i) by reason only that either spouse has become incapable of forming or having an intention to continue to live separate and apart or of continuing to live separate and apart of the spouse’s own volition, if it appears to the court that the separation would probably have continued if the spouse had not become so incapable, or

      • (ii) by reason only that the spouses have resumed cohabitation during a period of, or periods totalling, not more than ninety days with reconciliation as its primary purpose.

Marginal note:Duty of legal adviser
  •  (1) It is the duty of every barrister, solicitor, lawyer or advocate who undertakes to act on behalf of a spouse in a divorce proceeding

    • (a) to draw to the attention of the spouse the provisions of this Act that have as their object the reconciliation of spouses, and

    • (b) to discuss with the spouse the possibility of the reconciliation of the spouses and to inform the spouse of the marriage counselling or guidance facilities known to him or her that might be able to assist the spouses to achieve a reconciliation,

    unless the circumstances of the case are of such a nature that it would clearly not be appropriate to do so.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (2) It is the duty of every barrister, solicitor, lawyer or advocate who undertakes to act on behalf of a spouse in a divorce proceeding to discuss with the spouse the advisability of negotiating the matters that may be the subject of a support order or a custody order and to inform the spouse of the mediation facilities known to him or her that might be able to assist the spouses in negotiating those matters.

  • Marginal note:Certification

    (3) Every document presented to a court by a barrister, solicitor, lawyer or advocate that formally commences a divorce proceeding shall contain a statement by him or her certifying that he or she has complied with this section.

Marginal note:Duty of court — reconciliation
  •  (1) In a divorce proceeding, it is the duty of the court, before considering the evidence, to satisfy itself that there is no possibility of the reconciliation of the spouses, unless the circumstances of the case are of such a nature that it would clearly not be appropriate to do so.

  • Marginal note:Adjournment

    (2) Where at any stage in a divorce proceeding it appears to the court from the nature of the case, the evidence or the attitude of either or both spouses that there is a possibility of the reconciliation of the spouses, the court shall

    • (a) adjourn the proceeding to afford the spouses an opportunity to achieve a reconciliation; and

    • (b) with the consent of the spouses or in the discretion of the court, nominate

      • (i) a person with experience or training in marriage counselling or guidance, or

      • (ii) in special circumstances, some other suitable person,

      to assist the spouses to achieve a reconciliation.

  • Marginal note:Resumption

    (3) Where fourteen days have elapsed from the date of any adjournment under subsection (2), the court shall resume the proceeding on the application of either or both spouses.

  • Marginal note:Nominee not competent or compellable

    (4) No person nominated by a court under this section to assist spouses to achieve a reconciliation is competent or compellable in any legal proceedings to disclose any admission or communication made to that person in his or her capacity as a nominee of the court for that purpose.

  • Marginal note:Evidence not admissible

    (5) Evidence of anything said or of any admission or communication made in the course of assisting spouses to achieve a reconciliation is not admissible in any legal proceedings.

Marginal note:Duty of court — bars
  •  (1) In a divorce proceeding, it is the duty of the court

    • (a) to satisfy itself that there has been no collusion in relation to the application for a divorce and to dismiss the application if it finds that there was collusion in presenting it;

    • (b) 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; and

    • (c) where a divorce is sought in circumstances described in paragraph 8(2)(b), to satisfy itself that there has been no condonation or connivance on the part of the spouse bringing the proceeding, and to dismiss the application for a divorce if that spouse has condoned or connived at the act or conduct complained of unless, in the opinion of the court, the public interest would be better served by granting the divorce.

  • Marginal note:Revival

    (2) Any act or conduct that has been condoned is not capable of being revived so as to constitute a circumstance described in paragraph 8(2)(b).

  • Marginal note:Condonation

    (3) For the purposes of this section, a continuation or resumption of cohabitation during a period of, or periods totalling, not more than ninety days with reconciliation as its primary purpose shall not be considered to constitute condonation.

  • Definition of “collusion”

    (4) In this section, “collusion” means an agreement or conspiracy to which an applicant for a divorce is either directly or indirectly a party for the purpose of subverting the administration of justice, and includes any agreement, understanding or arrangement to fabricate or suppress evidence or to deceive the court, but does not include an agreement to the extent that it provides for separation between the parties, financial support, division of property or the custody of any child of the marriage.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 11;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 1.1.
Marginal note:Effective date generally
  •  (1) Subject to this section, a divorce takes effect on the thirty-first day after the day on which the judgment granting the divorce is rendered.

  • Marginal note:Special circumstances

    (2) Where, on or after rendering a judgment granting a divorce,

    • (a) the court is of the opinion that by reason of special circumstances the divorce should take effect earlier than the thirty-first day after the day on which the judgment is rendered, and

    • (b) the spouses agree and undertake that no appeal from the judgment will be taken, or any appeal from the judgment that was taken has been abandoned,

    the court may order that the divorce takes effect at such earlier time as it considers appropriate.

  • Marginal note:Effective date where appeal

    (3) A divorce in respect of which an appeal is pending at the end of the period referred to in subsection (1), unless voided on appeal, takes effect on the expiration of the time fixed by law for instituting an appeal from the decision on that appeal or any subsequent appeal, if no appeal has been instituted within that time.

  • Marginal note:Certain extensions to be counted

    (4) For the purposes of subsection (3), the time fixed by law for instituting an appeal from a decision on an appeal includes any extension thereof fixed pursuant to law before the expiration of that time or fixed thereafter on an application instituted before the expiration of that time.

  • Marginal note:No late extensions of time for appeal

    (5) Notwithstanding any other law, the time fixed by law for instituting an appeal from a decision referred to in subsection (3) may not be extended after the expiration of that time, except on an application instituted before the expiration of that time.

  • Marginal note:Effective date where decision of Supreme Court of Canada

    (6) A divorce in respect of which an appeal has been taken to the Supreme Court of Canada, unless voided on the appeal, takes effect on the day on which the judgment on the appeal is rendered.

  • Marginal note:Certificate of divorce

    (7) Where a divorce takes effect in accordance with this section, a judge or officer of the court that rendered the judgment granting the divorce or, where that judgment has been appealed, of the appellate court that rendered the judgment on the final appeal, shall, on request, issue to any person a certificate that a divorce granted under this Act dissolved the marriage of the specified persons effective as of a specified date.

  • Marginal note:Conclusive proof

    (8) A certificate referred to in subsection (7), or a certified copy thereof, is conclusive proof of the facts so certified without proof of the signature or authority of the person appearing to have signed the certificate.

Marginal note:Legal effect throughout Canada

 On taking effect, a divorce granted under this Act has legal effect throughout Canada.

Marginal note:Marriage dissolved

 On taking effect, a divorce granted under this Act dissolves the marriage of the spouses.

COROLLARY RELIEF

Interpretation

Definition of “spouse”

 In sections 15.1 to 16, “spouse” has the meaning assigned by subsection 2(1), and includes a former spouse.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 15;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 2.

Child Support Orders

Marginal note:Child support order
  •  (1) A court of competent jurisdiction may, on application by either or both spouses, make an order requiring a spouse to pay for the support of any or all children of the marriage.

  • Marginal note:Interim order

    (2) Where an application is made under subsection (1), the court may, on application by either or both spouses, make an interim order requiring a spouse to pay for the support of any or all children of the marriage, pending the determination of the application under subsection (1).

  • Marginal note:Guidelines apply

    (3) A court making an order under subsection (1) or an interim order under subsection (2) shall do so in accordance with the applicable guidelines.

  • Marginal note:Terms and conditions

    (4) The court may make an order under subsection (1) or an interim order under subsection (2) for a definite or indefinite period or until a specified event occurs, and may impose terms, conditions or restrictions in connection with the order or interim order as it thinks fit and just.

  • Marginal note:Court may take agreement, etc., into account

    (5) Notwithstanding subsection (3), a court may award an amount that is different from the amount that would be determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines if the court is satisfied

    • (a) that special provisions in an order, a judgment or a written agreement respecting the financial obligations of the spouses, or the division or transfer of their property, directly or indirectly benefit a child, or that special provisions have otherwise been made for the benefit of a child; and

    • (b) that the application of the applicable guidelines would result in an amount of child support that is inequitable given those special provisions.

  • Marginal note:Reasons

    (6) Where the court awards, pursuant to subsection (5), an amount that is different from the amount that would be determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines, the court shall record its reasons for having done so.

  • Marginal note:Consent orders

    (7) Notwithstanding subsection (3), a court may award an amount that is different from the amount that would be determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines on the consent of both spouses if it is satisfied that reasonable arrangements have been made for the support of the child to whom the order relates.

  • Marginal note:Reasonable arrangements

    (8) For the purposes of subsection (7), in determining whether reasonable arrangements have been made for the support of a child, the court shall have regard to the applicable guidelines. However, the court shall not consider the arrangements to be unreasonable solely because the amount of support agreed to is not the same as the amount that would otherwise have been determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines.

  • 1997, c. 1, s. 2.

Spousal Support Orders

Marginal note:Spousal support order
  •  (1) A court of competent jurisdiction may, on application by either or both spouses, make an order requiring a spouse to secure or pay, or to secure and pay, such lump sum or periodic sums, or such lump sum and periodic sums, as the court thinks reasonable for the support of the other spouse.

  • Marginal note:Interim order

    (2) Where an application is made under subsection (1), the court may, on application by either or both spouses, make an interim order requiring a spouse to secure or pay, or to secure and pay, such lump sum or periodic sums, or such lump sum and periodic sums, as the court thinks reasonable for the support of the other spouse, pending the determination of the application under subsection (1).

  • Marginal note:Terms and conditions

    (3) The court may make an order under subsection (1) or an interim order under subsection (2) for a definite or indefinite period or until a specified event occurs, and may impose terms, conditions or restrictions in connection with the order as it thinks fit and just.

  • Marginal note:Factors

    (4) In making an order under subsection (1) or an interim order under subsection (2), the court shall take into consideration the condition, means, needs and other circumstances of each spouse, including

    • (a) the length of time the spouses cohabited;

    • (b) the functions performed by each spouse during cohabitation; and

    • (c) any order, agreement or arrangement relating to support of either spouse.

  • Marginal note:Spousal misconduct

    (5) In making an order under subsection (1) or an interim order under subsection (2), the court shall not take into consideration any misconduct of a spouse in relation to the marriage.

  • Marginal note:Objectives of spousal support order

    (6) An order made under subsection (1) or an interim order under subsection (2) that provides for the support of a spouse should

    • (a) recognize any economic advantages or disadvantages to the spouses arising from the marriage or its breakdown;

    • (b) apportion between the spouses any financial consequences arising from the care of any child of the marriage over and above any obligation for the support of any child of the marriage;

    • (c) relieve any economic hardship of the spouses arising from the breakdown of the marriage; and

    • (d) in so far as practicable, promote the economic self-sufficiency of each spouse within a reasonable period of time.

  • 1997, c. 1, s. 2.

Priority

Marginal note:Priority to child support
  •  (1) Where a court is considering an application for a child support order and an application for a spousal support order, the court shall give priority to child support in determining the applications.

  • Marginal note:Reasons

    (2) Where, as a result of giving priority to child support, the court is unable to make a spousal support order or the court makes a spousal support order in an amount that is less than it otherwise would have been, the court shall record its reasons for having done so.

  • Marginal note:Consequences of reduction or termination of child support order

    (3) Where, as a result of giving priority to child support, a spousal support order was not made, or the amount of a spousal support order is less than it otherwise would have been, any subsequent reduction or termination of that child support constitutes a change of circumstances for the purposes of applying for a spousal support order, or a variation order in respect of the spousal support order, as the case may be.

  • 1997, c. 1, s. 2.

Custody Orders

Marginal note:Order for custody
  •  (1) A court of competent jurisdiction may, on application by either or both spouses or by any other person, make an order respecting the custody of or the access to, or the custody of and access to, any or all children of the marriage.

  • Marginal note:Interim order for custody

    (2) Where an application is made under subsection (1), the court may, on application by either or both spouses or by any other person, make an interim order respecting the custody of or the access to, or the custody of and access to, any or all children of the marriage pending determination of the application under subsection (1).

  • Marginal note:Application by other person

    (3) A person, other than a spouse, may not make an application under subsection (1) or (2) without leave of the court.

  • Marginal note:Joint custody or access

    (4) The court may make an order under this section granting custody of, or access to, any or all children of the marriage to any one or more persons.

  • Marginal note:Access

    (5) Unless the court orders otherwise, a spouse who is granted access to a child of the marriage has the right to make inquiries, and to be given information, as to the health, education and welfare of the child.

  • Marginal note:Terms and conditions

    (6) The court may make an order under this section for a definite or indefinite period or until the happening of a specified event and may impose such other terms, conditions or restrictions in connection therewith as it thinks fit and just.

  • Marginal note:Order respecting change of residence

    (7) Without limiting the generality of subsection (6), the court may include in an order under this section a term requiring any person who has custody of a child of the marriage and who intends to change the place of residence of that child to notify, at least thirty days before the change or within such other period before the change as the court may specify, any person who is granted access to that child of the change, the time at which the change will be made and the new place of residence of the child.

  • Marginal note:Factors

    (8) In making an order under this section, the court shall take into consideration only the best interests of the child of the marriage as determined by reference to the condition, means, needs and other circumstances of the child.

  • Marginal note:Past conduct

    (9) In making an order under this section, the court shall not take into consideration the past conduct of any person unless the conduct is relevant to the ability of that person to act as a parent of a child.

  • Marginal note:Maximum contact

    (10) In making an order under this section, the court shall give effect to the principle that a child of the marriage should have as much contact with each spouse as is consistent with the best interests of the child and, for that purpose, shall take into consideration the willingness of the person for whom custody is sought to facilitate such contact.

Variation, Rescission or Suspension of Orders

Marginal note:Order for variation, rescission or suspension
  •  (1) A court of competent jurisdiction may make an order varying, rescinding or suspending, prospectively or retroactively,

    • (a) a support order or any provision thereof on application by either or both former spouses; or

    • (b) a custody order or any provision thereof on application by either or both former spouses or by any other person.

  • Marginal note:Application by other person

    (2) A person, other than a former spouse, may not make an application under paragraph (1)(b) without leave of the court.

  • Marginal note:Terms and conditions

    (3) The court may include in a variation order any provision that under this Act could have been included in the order in respect of which the variation order is sought.

  • Marginal note:Factors for child support order

    (4) Before the court makes a variation order in respect of a child support order, the court shall satisfy itself that a change of circumstances as provided for in the applicable guidelines has occurred since the making of the child support order or the last variation order made in respect of that order.

  • Marginal note:Factors for spousal support order

    (4.1) Before the court makes a variation order in respect of a spousal support order, the court shall satisfy itself that a change in the condition, means, needs or other circumstances of either former spouse has occurred since the making of the spousal support order or the last variation order made in respect of that order, and, in making the variation order, the court shall take that change into consideration.

  • Marginal note:Factors for custody order

    (5) Before the court makes a variation order in respect of a custody order, the court shall satisfy itself that there has been a change in the condition, means, needs or other circumstances of the child of the marriage occurring since the making of the custody order or the last variation order made in respect of that order, as the case may be, and, in making the variation order, the court shall take into consideration only the best interests of the child as determined by reference to that change.

  • Marginal note:Variation order

    (5.1) For the purposes of subsection (5), a former spouse’s terminal illness or critical condition shall be considered a change of circumstances of the child of the marriage, and the court shall make a variation order in respect of access that is in the best interests of the child.

  • Marginal note:Conduct

    (6) In making a variation order, the court shall not take into consideration any conduct that under this Act could not have been considered in making the order in respect of which the variation order is sought.

  • Marginal note:Guidelines apply

    (6.1) A court making a variation order in respect of a child support order shall do so in accordance with the applicable guidelines.

  • Marginal note:Court may take agreement, etc., into account

    (6.2) Notwithstanding subsection (6.1), in making a variation order in respect of a child support order, a court may award an amount that is different from the amount that would be determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines if the court is satisfied

    • (a) that special provisions in an order, a judgment or a written agreement respecting the financial obligations of the spouses, or the division or transfer of their property, directly or indirectly benefit a child, or that special provisions have otherwise been made for the benefit of a child; and

    • (b) that the application of the applicable guidelines would result in an amount of child support that is inequitable given those special provisions.

  • Marginal note:Reasons

    (6.3) Where the court awards, pursuant to subsection (6.2), an amount that is different from the amount that would be determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines, the court shall record its reasons for having done so.

  • Marginal note:Consent orders

    (6.4) Notwithstanding subsection (6.1), a court may award an amount that is different from the amount that would be determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines on the consent of both spouses if it is satisfied that reasonable arrangements have been made for the support of the child to whom the order relates.

  • Marginal note:Reasonable arrangements

    (6.5) For the purposes of subsection (6.4), in determining whether reasonable arrangements have been made for the support of a child, the court shall have regard to the applicable guidelines. However, the court shall not consider the arrangements to be unreasonable solely because the amount of support agreed to is not the same as the amount that would otherwise have been determined in accordance with the applicable guidelines.

  • Marginal note:Objectives of variation order varying spousal support order

    (7) A variation order varying a spousal support order should

    • (a) recognize any economic advantages or disadvantages to the former spouses arising from the marriage or its breakdown;

    • (b) apportion between the former spouses any financial consequences arising from the care of any child of the marriage over and above any obligation for the support of any child of the marriage;

    • (c) relieve any economic hardship of the former spouses arising from the breakdown of the marriage; and

    • (d) in so far as practicable, promote the economic self-sufficiency of each former spouse within a reasonable period of time.

  • (8) [Repealed, 1997, c. 1, s. 5]

  • Marginal note:Maximum contact

    (9) In making a variation order varying a custody order, the court shall give effect to the principle that a child of the marriage should have as much contact with each former spouse as is consistent with the best interests of the child and, for that purpose, where the variation order would grant custody of the child to a person who does not currently have custody, the court shall take into consideration the willingness of that person to facilitate such contact.

  • Marginal note:Limitation

    (10) Notwithstanding subsection (1), where a spousal support order provides for support for a definite period or until a specified event occurs, a court may not, on an application instituted after the expiration of that period or the occurrence of the event, make a variation order for the purpose of resuming that support unless the court is satisfied that

    • (a) a variation order is necessary to relieve economic hardship arising from a change described in subsection (4.1) that is related to the marriage; and

    • (b) the changed circumstances, had they existed at the time of the making of the spousal support order or the last variation order made in respect of that order, as the case may be, would likely have resulted in a different order.

  • Marginal note:Copy of order

    (11) Where a court makes a variation order in respect of a support order or a custody order made by another court, it shall send a copy of the variation order, certified by a judge or officer of the court, to that other court.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 17;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 5;
  • 2007, c. 14, s. 1.
Marginal note:Variation order by affidavit, etc.

 Where both former spouses are ordinarily resident in different provinces, a court of competent jurisdiction may, in accordance with any applicable rules of the court, make a variation order pursuant to subsection 17(1) on the basis of the submissions of the former spouses, whether presented orally before the court or by means of affidavits or any means of telecommunication, if both former spouses consent thereto.

  • 1993, c. 8, s. 2.

Provisional Orders

Marginal note:Definitions
  •  (1) In this section and section 19,

    “Attorney General”

    « procureur général »

    “Attorney General”, in respect of a province, means

    • (a) for Yukon, the member of the Executive Council of Yukon designated by the Commissioner of Yukon,

    • (b) for the Northwest Territories, the member of the Executive Council of the Northwest Territories designated by the Commissioner of the Northwest Territories,

    • (b.1) for Nunavut, the member of the Executive Council of Nunavut designated by the Commissioner of Nunavut, and

    • (c) for the other provinces, the Attorney General of the province,

    and includes any person authorized in writing by the member or Attorney General to act for the member or Attorney General in the performance of a function under this section or section 19;

    “provisional order”

    « ordonnance conditionnelle »

    “provisional order” means an order made pursuant to subsection (2).

  • Marginal note:Provisional order

    (2) Notwithstanding paragraph 5(1)(a) and subsection 17(1), where an application is made to a court in a province for a variation order in respect of a support order and

    • (a) the respondent in the application is ordinarily resident in another province and has not accepted the jurisdiction of the court, or both former spouses have not consented to the application of section 17.1 in respect of the matter, and

    • (b) in the circumstances of the case, the court is satisfied that the issues can be adequately determined by proceeding under this section and section 19,

    the court shall make a variation order with or without notice to and in the absence of the respondent, but such order is provisional only and has no legal effect until it is confirmed in a proceeding under section 19 and, where so confirmed, it has legal effect in accordance with the terms of the order confirming it.

  • Marginal note:Transmission

    (3) Where a court in a province makes a provisional order, it shall send to the Attorney General for the province

    • (a) three copies of the provisional order certified by a judge or officer of the court;

    • (b) a certified or sworn document setting out or summarizing the evidence given to the court; and

    • (c) a statement giving any available information respecting the identification, location, income and assets of the respondent.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (4) On receipt of the documents referred to in subsection (3), the Attorney General shall send the documents to the Attorney General for the province in which the respondent is ordinarily resident.

  • Marginal note:Further evidence

    (5) Where, during a proceeding under section 19, a court in a province remits the matter back for further evidence to the court that made the provisional order, the court that made the order shall, after giving notice to the applicant, receive further evidence.

  • Marginal note:Transmission

    (6) Where evidence is received under subsection (5), the court that received the evidence shall forward to the court that remitted the matter back a certified or sworn document setting out or summarizing the evidence, together with such recommendations as the court that received the evidence considers appropriate.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 18;
  • 1993, c. 8, s. 3, c. 28, s. 78;
  • 2002, c. 7, s. 159;
  • 2014, c. 2, s. 33.
Marginal note:Transmission
  •  (1) On receipt of any documents sent pursuant to subsection 18(4), the Attorney General for the province in which the respondent is ordinarily resident shall send the documents to a court in the province.

  • Marginal note:Procedure

    (2) Subject to subsection (3), where documents have been sent to a court pursuant to subsection (1), the court shall serve on the respondent a copy of the documents and a notice of a hearing respecting confirmation of the provisional order and shall proceed with the hearing, in the absence of the applicant, taking into consideration the certified or sworn document setting out or summarizing the evidence given to the court that made the provisional order.

  • Marginal note:Return to Attorney General

    (3) Where documents have been sent to a court pursuant to subsection (1) and the respondent apparently is outside the province and is not likely to return, the court shall send the documents to the Attorney General for that province, together with any available information respecting the location and circumstances of the respondent.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (4) On receipt of any documents and information sent pursuant to subsection (3), the Attorney General shall send the documents and information to the Attorney General for the province of the court that made the provisional order.

  • Marginal note:Right of respondent

    (5) In a proceeding under this section, the respondent may raise any matter that might have been raised before the court that made the provisional order.

  • Marginal note:Further evidence

    (6) Where, in a proceeding under this section, the respondent satisfies the court that for the purpose of taking further evidence or for any other purpose it is necessary to remit the matter back to the court that made the provisional order, the court may so remit the matter and adjourn the proceeding for that purpose.

  • Marginal note:Order of confirmation or refusal

    (7) Subject to subsection (7.1), at the conclusion of a proceeding under this section, the court shall make an order

    • (a) confirming the provisional order without variation;

    • (b) confirming the provisional order with variation; or

    • (c) refusing confirmation of the provisional order.

  • Marginal note:Guidelines apply

    (7.1) A court making an order under subsection (7) in respect of a child support order shall do so in accordance with the applicable guidelines.

  • Marginal note:Further evidence

    (8) The court, before making an order confirming the provisional order with variation or an order refusing confirmation of the provisional order, shall decide whether to remit the matter back for further evidence to the court that made the provisional order.

  • Marginal note:Interim order for support of children

    (9) Where a court remits a matter pursuant to this section in relation to a child support order, the court may, pending the making of an order under subsection (7), make an interim order in accordance with the applicable guidelines requiring a spouse to pay for the support of any or all children of the marriage.

  • Marginal note:Interim order for support of spouse

    (9.1) Where a court remits a matter pursuant to this section in relation to a spousal support order, the court may make an interim order requiring a spouse to secure or pay, or to secure and pay, such lump sum or periodic sums, or such lump sum and periodic sums, as the court thinks reasonable for the support of the other spouse, pending the making of an order under subsection (7).

  • Marginal note:Terms and conditions

    (10) The court may make an order under subsection (9) or (9.1) for a definite or indefinite period or until a specified event occurs, and may impose terms, conditions or restrictions in connection with the order as it thinks fit and just.

  • Marginal note:Provisions applicable

    (11) Subsections 17(4), (4.1) and (6) to (7) apply, with such modifications as the circumstances require, in respect of an order made under subsection (9) or (9.1) as if it were a variation order referred to in those subsections.

  • Marginal note:Report and filing

    (12) On making an order under subsection (7), the court in a province shall

    • (a) send a copy of the order, certified by a judge or officer of the court, to the Attorney General for that province, to the court that made the provisional order and, where that court is not the court that made the support order in respect of which the provisional order was made, to the court that made the support order;

    • (b) where an order is made confirming the provisional order with or without variation, file the order in the court; and

    • (c) where an order is made confirming the provisional order with variation or refusing confirmation of the provisional order, give written reasons to the Attorney General for that province and to the court that made the provisional order.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 19;
  • 1993, c. 8, s. 4;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 7.

Definition of “court”

  •  (1) In this section, “court”, in respect of a province, has the meaning assigned by subsection 2(1) and includes such other court having jurisdiction in the province as is designated by the Lieutenant Governor in Council of the province as a court for the purposes of this section.

  • Marginal note:Legal effect throughout Canada

    (2) Subject to subsection 18(2), an order made under any of sections 15.1 to 17 or subsection 19(7), (9) or (9.1) has legal effect throughout Canada.

  • Marginal note:Enforcement

    (3) An order that has legal effect throughout Canada pursuant to subsection (2) may be

    • (a) registered in any court in a province and enforced in like manner as an order of that court; or

    • (b) enforced in a province in any other manner provided for by the laws of that province, including its laws respecting reciprocal enforcement between the province and a jurisdiction outside Canada.

  • Marginal note:Variation of orders

    (4) Notwithstanding subsection (3), a court may only vary an order that has legal effect throughout Canada pursuant to subsection (2) in accordance with this Act.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 20;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 8.
Marginal note:Assignment of order
  •  (1) A support order may be assigned to

    • (a) any minister of the Crown for Canada designated by the Governor in Council;

    • (b) any minister of the Crown for a province, or any agency in a province, designated by the Lieutenant Governor in Council of the province;

    • (c) any member of the Legislative Assembly of Yukon, or any agency in Yukon, designated by the Commissioner of Yukon;

    • (d) any member of the Legislative Assembly of the Northwest Territories, or any agency in the Northwest Territories, designated by the Commissioner of the Northwest Territories; or

    • (e) any member of the Legislative Assembly of Nunavut, or any agency in Nunavut, designated by the Commissioner of Nunavut.

  • Marginal note:Rights

    (2) A minister, member or agency referred to in subsection (1) to whom an order is assigned is entitled to the payments due under the order, and has the same right to be notified of, and to participate in, proceedings under this Act to vary, rescind, suspend or enforce the order as the person who would otherwise be entitled to the payments.

  • 1993, c. 28, s. 78;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 9;
  • 1998, c. 15, s. 23;
  • 2002, c. 7, s. 160;
  • 2014, c. 2, s. 34.

APPEALS

Marginal note:Appeal to appellate court
  •  (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3), an appeal lies to the appellate court from any judgment or order, whether final or interim, rendered or made by a court under this Act.

  • Marginal note:Restriction on divorce appeals

    (2) No appeal lies from a judgment granting a divorce on or after the day on which the divorce takes effect.

  • Marginal note:Restriction on order appeals

    (3) No appeal lies from an order made under this Act more than thirty days after the day on which the order was made.

  • Marginal note:Extension

    (4) An appellate court or a judge thereof may, on special grounds, either before or after the expiration of the time fixed by subsection (3) for instituting an appeal, by order extend that time.

  • Marginal note:Powers of appellate court

    (5) The appellate court may

    • (a) dismiss the appeal; or

    • (b) allow the appeal and

      • (i) render the judgment or make the order that ought to have been rendered or made, including such order or such further or other order as it deems just, or

      • (ii) order a new hearing where it deems it necessary to do so to correct a substantial wrong or miscarriage of justice.

  • Marginal note:Procedure on appeals

    (6) Except as otherwise provided by this Act or the rules or regulations, an appeal under this section shall be asserted, heard and decided according to the ordinary procedure governing appeals to the appellate court from the court rendering the judgment or making the order being appealed.

GENERAL

Definition of “spouse”

  •  (1) In this section, “spouse” has the meaning assigned by subsection 2(1) and includes a former spouse.

  • Marginal note:Affidavit re removal of barriers to religious remarriage

    (2) In any proceedings under this Act, a spouse (in this section referred to as the “deponent”) may serve on the other spouse and file with the court an affidavit indicating

    • (a) that the other spouse is the spouse of the deponent;

    • (b) the date and place of the marriage, and the official character of the person who solemnized the marriage;

    • (c) the nature of any barriers to the remarriage of the deponent within the deponent’s religion the removal of which is within the other spouse’s control;

    • (d) where there are any barriers to the remarriage of the other spouse within the other spouse’s religion the removal of which is within the deponent’s control, that the deponent

      • (i) has removed those barriers, and the date and circumstances of that removal, or

      • (ii) has signified a willingness to remove those barriers, and the date and circumstances of that signification;

    • (e) that the deponent has, in writing, requested the other spouse to remove all of the barriers to the remarriage of the deponent within the deponent’s religion the removal of which is within the other spouse’s control;

    • (f) the date of the request described in paragraph (e); and

    • (g) that the other spouse, despite the request described in paragraph (e), has failed to remove all of the barriers referred to in that paragraph.

  • Marginal note:Powers of court where barriers not removed

    (3) Where a spouse who has been served with an affidavit under subsection (2) does not

    • (a) within fifteen days after that affidavit is filed with the court or within such longer period as the court allows, serve on the deponent and file with the court an affidavit indicating that all of the barriers referred to in paragraph (2)(e) have been removed, and

    • (b) satisfy the court, in any additional manner that the court may require, that all of the barriers referred to in paragraph (2)(e) have been removed,

    the court may, subject to any terms that the court considers appropriate,

    • (c) dismiss any application filed by that spouse under this Act, and

    • (d) strike out any other pleadings and affidavits filed by that spouse under this Act.

  • Marginal note:Special case

    (4) Without limiting the generality of the court’s discretion under subsection (3), the court may refuse to exercise its powers under paragraphs (3)(c) and (d) where a spouse who has been served with an affidavit under subsection (2)

    • (a) within fifteen days after that affidavit is filed with the court or within such longer period as the court allows, serves on the deponent and files with the court an affidavit indicating genuine grounds of a religious or conscientious nature for refusing to remove the barriers referred to in paragraph (2)(e); and

    • (b) satisfies the court, in any additional manner that the court may require, that the spouse has genuine grounds of a religious or conscientious nature for refusing to remove the barriers referred to in paragraph (2)(e).

  • Marginal note:Affidavits

    (5) For the purposes of this section, an affidavit filed with the court by a spouse must, in order to be valid, indicate the date on which it was served on the other spouse.

  • Marginal note:Where section does not apply

    (6) This section does not apply where the power to remove the barrier to religious remarriage lies with a religious body or official.

  • 1990, c. 18, s. 2.
Marginal note:Recognition of foreign divorce
  •  (1) A divorce granted, on or after the coming into force of this Act, pursuant to a law of a country or subdivision of a country other than Canada by a tribunal or other authority having jurisdiction to do so shall be recognized for all purposes of determining the marital status in Canada of any person, if either former spouse was ordinarily resident in that country or subdivision for at least one year immediately preceding the commencement of proceedings for the divorce.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (2) A divorce granted, after July 1, 1968, pursuant to a law of a country or subdivision of a country other than Canada by a tribunal or other authority having jurisdiction to do so, on the basis of the domicile of the wife in that country or subdivision determined as if she were unmarried and, if she was a minor, as if she had attained the age of majority, shall be recognized for all purposes of determining the marital status in Canada of any person.

  • Marginal note:Other recognition rules preserved

    (3) Nothing in this section abrogates or derogates from any other rule of law respecting the recognition of divorces granted otherwise than under this Act.

Marginal note:Provincial laws of evidence
  •  (1) Subject to this or any other Act of Parliament, the laws of evidence of the province in which any proceedings under this Act are taken, including the laws of proof of service of any document, apply to such proceedings.

  • Marginal note:Presumption

    (2) For the purposes of this section, where any proceedings are transferred to the Federal Court under subsection 3(3) or 5(3), the proceedings shall be deemed to have been taken in the province specified in the direction of the Court to be the province with which both spouses or former spouses, as the case may be, are or have been most substantially connected.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 23;
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 183.
Marginal note:Proof of signature or office

 A document offered in a proceeding under this Act that purports to be certified or sworn by a judge or an officer of a court shall, unless the contrary is proved, be proof of the appointment, signature or authority of the judge or officer and, in the case of a document purporting to be sworn, of the appointment, signature or authority of the person before whom the document purports to be sworn.

Definition of “competent authority”

  •  (1) In this section, “competent authority”, in respect of a court, or appellate court, in a province means the body, person or group of persons ordinarily competent under the laws of that province to make rules regulating the practice and procedure in that court.

  • Marginal note:Rules

    (2) Subject to subsection (3), the competent authority may make rules applicable to any proceedings under this Act in a court, or appellate court, in a province, including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, rules

    • (a) regulating the practice and procedure in the court, including the addition of persons as parties to the proceedings;

    • (b) respecting the conduct and disposition of any proceedings under this Act without an oral hearing;

    • (b.1) respecting the application of section 17.1 in respect of proceedings for a variation order;

    • (c) regulating the sittings of the court;

    • (d) respecting the fixing and awarding of costs;

    • (e) prescribing and regulating the duties of officers of the court;

    • (f) respecting the transfer of proceedings under this Act to or from the court; and

    • (g) prescribing and regulating any other matter considered expedient to attain the ends of justice and carry into effect the purposes and provisions of this Act.

  • Marginal note:Exercise of power

    (3) The power to make rules for a court or appellate court conferred by subsection (2) on a competent authority shall be exercised in the like manner and subject to the like terms and conditions, if any, as the power to make rules for that court conferred on that authority by the laws of the province.

  • Marginal note:Not statutory instruments

    (4) Rules made pursuant to this section by a competent authority that is not a judicial or quasi-judicial body shall be deemed not to be statutory instruments within the meaning and for the purposes of the Statutory Instruments Act.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 25;
  • 1993, c. 8, s. 5.
Marginal note:Agreements with provinces
  •  (1) With the approval of the Governor in Council, the Minister of Justice may, on behalf of the Government of Canada, enter into an agreement with a province authorizing a provincial child support service designated in the agreement to

    • (a) assist courts in the province in the determination of the amount of child support; and

    • (b) recalculate, at regular intervals, in accordance with the applicable guidelines, the amount of child support orders on the basis of updated income information.

  • Marginal note:Effect of recalculation

    (2) Subject to subsection (5), the amount of a child support order as recalculated pursuant to this section shall for all purposes be deemed to be the amount payable under the child support order.

  • Marginal note:Liability

    (3) The former spouse against whom a child support order was made becomes liable to pay the amount as recalculated pursuant to this section thirty-one days after both former spouses to whom the order relates are notified of the recalculation in the manner provided for in the agreement authorizing the recalculation.

  • Marginal note:Right to vary

    (4) Where either or both former spouses to whom a child support order relates do not agree with the amount of the order as recalculated pursuant to this section, either former spouse may, within thirty days after both former spouses are notified of the recalculation in the manner provided for in the agreement authorizing the recalculation, apply to a court of competent jurisdiction for an order under subsection 17(1).

  • Marginal note:Effect of application

    (5) Where an application is made under subsection (4), the operation of subsection (3) is suspended pending the determination of the application, and the child support order continues in effect.

  • Marginal note:Withdrawal of application

    (6) Where an application made under subsection (4) is withdrawn before the determination of the application, the former spouse against whom the order was made becomes liable to pay the amount as recalculated pursuant to this section on the day on which the former spouse would have become liable had the application not been made.

  • 1997, c. 1, s. 10;
  • 1999, c. 31, s. 74(F).
Marginal note:Regulations
  •  (1) The Governor in Council may make regulations for carrying the purposes and provisions of this Act into effect and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, may make regulations

    • (a) respecting the establishment and operation of a central registry of divorce proceedings in Canada; and

    • (b) providing for uniformity in the rules made pursuant to section 25.

  • Marginal note:Regulations prevail

    (2) Any regulations made pursuant to subsection (1) to provide for uniformity in the rules prevail over those rules.

Marginal note:Guidelines
  •  (1) The Governor in Council may establish guidelines respecting the making of orders for child support, including, but without limiting the generality of the foregoing, guidelines

    • (a) respecting the way in which the amount of an order for child support is to be determined;

    • (b) respecting the circumstances in which discretion may be exercised in the making of an order for child support;

    • (c) authorizing a court to require that the amount payable under an order for child support be paid in periodic payments, in a lump sum or in a lump sum and periodic payments;

    • (d) authorizing a court to require that the amount payable under an order for child support be paid or secured, or paid and secured, in the manner specified in the order;

    • (e) respecting the circumstances that give rise to the making of a variation order in respect of a child support order;

    • (f) respecting the determination of income for the purposes of the application of the guidelines;

    • (g) authorizing a court to impute income for the purposes of the application of the guidelines; and

    • (h) respecting the production of income information and providing for sanctions when that information is not provided.

  • Marginal note:Principle

    (2) The guidelines shall be based on the principle that spouses have a joint financial obligation to maintain the children of the marriage in accordance with their relative abilities to contribute to the performance of that obligation.

  • Definition of “order for child support”

    (3) In subsection (1), “order for child support” means

    • (a) an order or interim order made under section 15.1;

    • (b) a variation order in respect of a child support order; or

    • (c) an order or an interim order made under section 19.

  • 1997, c. 1, s. 11.
Marginal note:Fees
  •  (1) The Governor in Council may, by order, authorize the Minister of Justice to prescribe a fee to be paid by any person to whom a service is provided under this Act or the regulations.

  • Marginal note:Agreements

    (2) The Minister of Justice may, with the approval of the Governor in Council, enter into an agreement with the government of any province respecting the collection and remittance of any fees prescribed pursuant to subsection (1).

Marginal note:Review and report

 The Minister of Justice shall undertake a comprehensive review of the provisions and operation of the Federal Child Support Guidelines and the determination of child support under this Act and shall cause a report on the review to be laid before each House of Parliament within five years after the coming into force of this section.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 28;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 12.

 [Repealed, 1997, c. 1, s. 12]

TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

Marginal note:Proceedings based on facts arising before commencement of Act

 Proceedings may be commenced under this Act notwithstanding that the material facts or circumstances giving rise to the proceedings or to jurisdiction over the proceedings occurred wholly or partly before the day on which this Act comes into force.

Divorce Act, R.S. 1970, c. D-8

Marginal note:Proceedings commenced before commencement of Act

 Proceedings commenced under the Divorce Act, chapter D-8 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1970, before the day on which this Act comes into force and not finally disposed of before that day shall be dealt with and disposed of in accordance with that Act as it read immediately before that day, as though it had not been repealed.

Marginal note:Variation and enforcement of orders previously made
  •  (1) Subject to subsection (1.1), any order made under subsection 11(1) of the Divorce Act, chapter D-8 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1970, including any order made pursuant to section 33 of this Act, and any order to the like effect made corollary to a decree of divorce granted in Canada before July 2, 1968 or granted on or after that day pursuant to subsection 22(2) of that Act may be varied, rescinded, suspended or enforced in accordance with sections 17 to 20, other than subsection 17(10), of this Act as if

    • (a) the order were a support order or custody order, as the case may be; and

    • (b) in subsections 17(4), (4.1) and (5), the words “or the last order made under subsection 11(2) of the Divorce Act, chapter D-8 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1970, varying that order” were added immediately before the words “or the last variation order made in respect of that order”.

  • Marginal note:Combined orders

    (1.1) Where an application is made under subsection 17(1) to vary an order referred to in subsection (1) that provides a single amount of money for the combined support of one or more children and a former spouse, the court shall rescind the order and treat the application as an application for a child support order and an application for a spousal support order.

  • Marginal note:Enforcement of interim orders

    (2) Any order made under section 10 of the Divorce Act, chapter D-8 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1970, including any order made pursuant to section 33 of this Act, may be enforced in accordance with section 20 of this Act as if it were an order made under subsection 15.1(1) or 15.2(1) or section 16 of this Act, as the case may be.

  • Marginal note:Assignment of orders previously made

    (3) Any order for the maintenance of a spouse or child of the marriage made under section 10 or 11 of the Divorce Act, chapter D-8 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1970, including any order made pursuant to section 33 of this Act, and any order to the like effect made corollary to a decree of divorce granted in Canada before July 2, 1968 or granted on or after that day pursuant to subsection 22(2) of that Act may be assigned to any minister, member or agency designated pursuant to section 20.1.

  • R.S., 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.), s. 34;
  • 1997, c. 1, s. 14.
Marginal note:Procedural laws continued

 The rules and regulations made under the Divorce Act, chapter D-8 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1970, and the provisions of any other law or of any rule, regulation or other instrument made thereunder respecting any matter in relation to which rules may be made under subsection 25(2) that were in force in Canada or any province immediately before the day on which this Act comes into force and that are not inconsistent with this Act continue in force as though made or enacted by or under this Act until they are repealed or altered by rules or regulations made under this Act or are, by virtue of the making of rules or regulations under this Act, rendered inconsistent with those rules or regulations.

Divorce Act, R.S. 1985, c. 3 (2nd Supp.)

Marginal note:Variation and enforcement of support orders previously made
  •  (1) Subject to subsection (2), any support order made under this Act before the coming into force of this section may be varied, rescinded, suspended or enforced in accordance with sections 17 to 20 as if the support order were a child support order or a spousal support order, as the case may be.

  • Marginal note:Combined orders

    (2) Where an application is made under subsection 17(1) to vary a support order made under this Act before the coming into force of this section that provides for the combined support of one or more children and a former spouse, the court shall rescind the order and treat the application as an application for a child support order and an application for a spousal support order.

  • Marginal note:Assignment of orders previously made

    (3) Any support order made under this Act before the coming into force of this section may be assigned to any minister, member or agency designated pursuant to section 20.1.

  • 1997, c. 1, s. 15.

COMMENCEMENT

Marginal note:Commencement

Footnote * This Act shall come into force on a day to be fixed by proclamation.

RELATED PROVISIONS

  • — R.S., 1985, c. 27 (2nd Supp.), s. 11

    • Transitional: proceedings

      11. Proceedings to which any of the provisions amended by the schedule apply that were commenced before the coming into force of section 10 shall be continued in accordance with those amended provisions without any further formality.

  • — 1990, c. 18, s. 3

    • Application of amendments

      3. Subsection 2(4) and section 21.1 of the Divorce Act, as enacted by this Act, apply in respect of proceedings commenced under the Divorce Act either before or after the coming into force of this Act.

  • — 1993, c. 8, ss. 19(1), (2)

    • Transitional
      • 19. (1) Sections 4 and 17.1 and subsection 18(2) of the Divorce Act, as enacted by sections 1, 2 and 3, respectively, of this Act, apply only to corollary relief proceedings commenced under the Divorce Act after the coming into force of those sections.

      • Idem

        (2) Subsections 19(2) and (7) of the Divorce Act, as enacted by section 4 of this Act, apply to corollary relief proceedings commenced under the Divorce Act before or after the coming into force of that section.

  • — 1998, c. 30, s. 10

    • Transitional — proceedings

      10. Every proceeding commenced before the coming into force of this section and in respect of which any provision amended by sections 12 to 16 applies shall be taken up and continued under and in conformity with that amended provision without any further formality.