2. Figure out how to serve your partner

The way you give your documents to your partner depends on which court form you’re serving. Rule 6: Service of documents tells you how each form or document has to be served.

For example, the following documents can only be served by :

You cannot these documents personally. This means you cannot give them directly to your partner.

For all other forms, if the Family Law Rules do not say which service you must use, you can choose between or special service.

There is also a guide on how to serve documents.

If your partner is outside Ontario

If you’re serving a application and your partner does not live in Ontario, the Hague Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extra judicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters (the “Hague Service Convention”) may apply. This is an international agreement that applies to countries that have signed the agreement.

The status table on the Convention’s website lists which countries have signed.

If the country your partner is living in is on the list, you can serve them through the Central Authority in Canada or by using a method of service that is acceptable under both Ontario rules and the rules of the country your partner is living in.

If your partner is living in a country that is not on the list, you can serve them using the Ontario rules.

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