Starting your family case
Filling out your documents
Throughout the family court process, you will need to complete many documents. You can find the court forms online or at any family court office.
You can complete the forms on a computer or by hand. Please make sure your handwriting is clear enough for someone to read. Court staff cannot complete the forms for you.
You will need to swear or affirm that the information in some of your forms is true and sign them in front of a commissioner for taking affidavits. There are commissioners for taking affidavits at all family court offices who will commission your forms for free. It is a criminal offence to swear or affirm a false or misleading affidavit.
Be sure to make three copies of your completed documents because you will need to:
- keep a copy for yourself
- give a copy to the applicant
- give the original to the court
Starting your case
To begin your family court case, you have to complete and file an application at the court with information about:
- the issues you are asking the judge to resolve (such as parenting time and decision-making responsibility in respect of children, child support, spousal support or dividing property)
- your relationship with the respondent
- any children you have
- any other facts you are relying on to support your application
You have to fill out one of the following applications to indicate which issues you want the court to consider:
- a general application (Form 8) if you and the other party can’t agree on how your family matters should be resolved and you’re making claims other than a divorce (whether or not you’re also asking for a divorce)
- a simple application (Form 8A) if you and your spouse can’t agree and the only claim you’re making is for divorce
- a joint application (Form 8A) if you and the other party both agree to a divorce and agree on all other family law matters such as parenting time, decision-making responsibility for children, support, and property
Rule 5 and Rule 8 of the Family Law Rules tell you the process on how to start a family law application.