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What is the best way to ask for a divorce?

The process of ending a marriage can have many challenges, but the having the initial conversation about breaking up with a soon-to-be ex can be among the most difficult. Often, Ontario individuals and couples find the process of planning to leave a marriage more stressful than actually taking those first steps. There are some tips to help people bring up a divorce with a spouse.

The first thing people should do is arrange a time and place for this serious conversation. Waiting for a perfect opportunity can often lead to weeks or even months of putting off the conversation, or worse, an explosive confrontation. Arranging a time with no third parties to briefly and honestly express intentions to file for divorce is an important first step.

It is important for Ontario couples to work through legal and financial issues throughout a divorce. However, this initial conversation is not where these negotiations should usually take place. Serving divorce papers or telling a spouse you have a lawyer can wait until after this conversation.

The only time divorce plans and separation agreements should be discussed in this initial meeting is if a spouse asks what is next or what should happen with children. In the event these questions are raised in a non-confrontational way, any planning should still remain vague. For example, a couple can agree to do what is in the best interest of the children without making an agreement about custody right away. It is also important that each party retain an Ontario lawyer as soon as possible after the conversation to solidify a separation agreement and discuss legal matters when the time comes.

Source:, "How To Tell Your Husband Or Wife, 'I Want A Divorce'", Arianna Jeret, March 30, 2018

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