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

Act current to 2016-11-21 and last amended on 2015-02-26. 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; (majeur)

    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; (cour d’appel)

    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; (lignes directrices applicables)

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    • (a) is under the age of majority and who has not withdrawn from their charge, or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

    child support order

    ordonnance alimentaire au profit d’un enfant

    child support order means an order made under subsection 15.1(1); (ordonnance alimentaire au profit d’un enfant)

    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; (action en mesures accessoires)

    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 Newfoundland and Labrador, 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, British Columbia and Prince Edward Island, 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; (tribunal)

    custody

    garde

    custody includes care, upbringing and any other incident of custody; (garde)

    custody order

    ordonnance de garde

    custody order means an order made under subsection 16(1); (ordonnance de garde)

    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; (action en divorce)

    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; (lignes directrices fédérales sur les pensions alimentaires pour enfants)

    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); (service provincial des aliments pour enfants)

    spousal support order

    ordonnance alimentaire au profit d’un époux

    spousal support order means an order made under subsection 15.2(1); (ordonnance alimentaire au profit d’un époux)

    spouse

    époux

    spouse means either of two persons who are married to each other; (époux)

    support order

    ordonnance alimentaire

    support order means a child support order or a spousal support order; (ordonnance alimentaire)

    variation order

    ordonnance modificative

    variation order means an order made under subsection 17(1); (ordonnance modificative)

    variation proceeding

    action en modification

    variation proceeding means a proceeding in a court in which either or both former spouses seek a variation order. (action en modification)

  • 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;
  • 2015, c. 3, s. 76.

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.
 
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