Need A Legal Opinion On Your Foreign Divorce? – Obtain A Foreign Divorce Opinion Letter

If you obtained a divorce outside of Canada and are now interested in marrying in the province of Ontario, it is necessary for you to obtain a legal opinion on your foreign divorce from licensed Canadian lawyer prior to getting remarried, and ensure that your application for marriage submission is accompanied by the foreign divorce opinion letter. Missing this important step can result in the denial of your marriage certificate.



What is a Foreign Divorce Opinion Letter?

A lawyer drafts a foreign divorce opinion letter to state their opinion about whether Canada would recognize your foreign divorce. Prior to issuing the letter, the lawyer assesses relevant factors and applicable law, including the jurisdiction in which the divorce was granted, where the parties to the divorce lived, and other issues. After taking these considerations into account, the lawyer issues an opinion on whether the foreign divorce could be recognized in Canada.

Failure to submit a legal opinion letter on the foreign divorce to the government before getting remarried can put your application for marriage approval at risk. Obtaining a foreign divorce opinion letter is as simple as contacting a local lawyer, and it is affordable. Contact us today.


Why Do I Need a Lawyer to Draft a Foreign Divorce Opinion Letter?

If you plan to marry in Ontario, only lawyers that are licensed and authorized to practice law by the Law Society of Upper Canada can provide and sign a letter of opinion on a foreign divorce. If you try to produce your own foreign divorce opinion letter or obtain one from a practitioner that is unlicensed, the government will reject it.

The lawyer will offer a clear rationale for why she or he thinks your foreign divorce should be recognized as a valid divorce in Ontario. The legal opinion letter on the foreign divorce will reference applicable Ontario law, as well as relevant facts to support the legal opinion the lawyer has provided.


What Documents Do I have to Provide to Obtain a Foreign Divorce Opinion Letter?

The lawyer will need the following information to complete the necessary research, and draft the foreign divorce opinion letter, so please bring these documents to your appointment:

  • Completed Application for Marriage – Completed by each of the parties that intend to marry.
  • The Divorce Decree – The original, or a copy that is certified by the court.
  • Statement of Sole Responsibility – Both of the parties that intend to marry must sign it.
  • Signed Statement Confirming Residency in Divorce Jurisdiction – Written by the individual that is divorced to confirm that they or their previous spouse resided in the jurisdiction where the divorce was granted for a minimum of 1 year before submitting the application for divorce (the 1 year immediately preceding the divorce submission).

NOTE: Mail Service is Available.

If you are unable to visit our office in person for an appointment, we offer a convenient mail-in service, which includes having our firm review and submit the Foreign Divorce Opinion Letter on your behalf to the Marriage Office, as well as completing the letter. The fee for the mail service is $125 + HST, which is added to the fee for the foreign divorce opinion letter.

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