How to get your marriage certificate

If you want a divorce order, you must file your original marriage certificate with the court.

The court will not give you a divorce until you file your certificate, unless the court is satisfied by your explanation in your Form 36: Affidavit for Divorce why you cannot get your certificate.

If you do not have your marriage certificate and were married in Ontario, you can:

If you were married outside of Canada, and your marriage certificate is not in English, you must have it translated by a certified translator. You can find certified translation services online or in the yellow pages of the telephone directory.

Previous divorce or death of a spouse

If you were married in another province or territory in Canada, you may order a copy of your marriage certificate from the government of that province or territory.

If you were married outside of Canada, you must provide proof of any previous divorce or death of your spouse. You will need to contact the government branch responsible for recording this type of information in the other country.

Central Registry of Divorce Proceedings

The Central Registry of Divorce Proceedings must be notified whenever a person applies for a divorce anywhere in Canada. The court will electronically send information to the federal Department of Justice’s Central Registry of Divorce Proceedings to obtain a Clearance Certificate that confirms no other divorce cases have been started in Canada for you and your spouse. The court cannot grant your divorce until the Clearance Certificate has been received.

Divorce order

If the judge grants your divorce, the court will:

  • issue a divorce order
  • send you and your former spouse the signed order in the self-addressed stamped envelopes that you provided to the court

Divorce certificate

Once the court grants a divorce, the divorce order will state that the divorce is effective 31 days after the order was made. The certificate of divorce is proof of the date of your divorce.

You or your former spouse may request the certificate of divorce from the court.

Learn more about obtaining a divorce certificate.