Once you serve your documents on your partner, you must go to the court to file them in your court file. You do this at the court counter, with the help of the court clerk.
Because you're starting the case, you have to start a court file at the court by creating a continuing record and a table of contents. The continuing record is a court file that has all the important documents in your case.
Rule 9: Continuing Record says that you must file every document in your case in a continuing record so the judge can find it easily when it's needed.
The continuing record has 2 parts:
- The endorsement volume has all the endorsements and court orders the judge made in your case. An endorsement is the written directions a judge gives you and your partner that says what you must do or not do.
- The documents volume has all the documents you and your partner file for your case, including Applications, Answers, Replies, affidavits of service, financial statements, motions, affidavits, and trial management conference briefs. It does not include case conference briefs or settlement conference briefs.
Documents are added to the continuing record after they have been served on the other person.
When you add a document to the continuing record, you also have to update the table of contents by listing each document you're filing.
Court staff can help you make a continuing record and help you figure out where each document goes.
Make sure you keep a copy of every document you and your partner fill out. This allows you to keep track of your case yourself. You won't have to go to the court to ask the court clerk to get your file if you need to check something.
There are no court fees at the Ontario Court of Justice. But, if your case is at the Superior Court of Justice or the Family Branch of the Superior Court of Justice you have to pay court fees. These include:
- $157 to file an Application
- $167 to file an Application that includes a divorce
If you can’t afford to pay the court fees, you can ask the court for a "fee waiver". If you get a waiver, this means you don't have to pay most court fees. The Ontario government’s A Guide to Fee Waiver Requests tells you which court fees can be waived and how to ask for a fee waiver.