As a divorce lawyer in Calgary, I am frequently asked: Do I need to use a lawyer to obtain an uncontested divorce in Calgary?
The answer to that question depends upon what is meant by "uncontested divorce."
If the parties have agreed upon issues such as custody and access to the children, child support, whether either party is to claim spousal support and, if so, how much is to be paid and for how long, and how the matrimonial property is to be divided, then they are unlikely to need the assistance of a lawyer to obtain a divorce in Calgary. However, I would certainly suggest that each party consult with a lawyer before agreeing upon the final paperwork just to ensure that nothing has been overlooked.
If the parties wish to put any agreement as to how the matrimonial property is to be divided in writing then, to ensure that the provisions of the Matrimonial Property Act of Alberta is complied with, the parties would be best advised to receive advice from a lawyer who will then sign the Certificate of Independent Legal Advice that should be contained in the agreement.
The paperwork that the parties will need to submit to the Court to obtain a divorce is relatively straightforward to complete and, in fact, the Alberta Court's website even provides step by step guidance of how to obtain a divorce here.
Unfortunately, the parties' belief that the divorce will be uncontested is not always supported by what happens once the realisation that the divorce is proceeding. Frequently, emotions take over which may scupper the agreement the parties thought they had.
Despite what people may believe, the vast majority of divorce lawyers in Calgary do not wish to increase the stress of the breakdown of the marriage to the parties. They wish to assist the parties to obtain their divorce in an efficient and cost effective fashion that ensures that the parties are able to treat the other amicably in the future, particularly if the parties have children.
If you have any questions regarding the above, please do not hesitate to contact me on 403-538-2105, or via email here.