For more legal information, visit the CLEO website and Steps to Justice

Change font size:

Print page Expand all & print

File your documents in court

After you serve your partner, you must file your documents and Form 6B: Affidavit of Service with the court. This means they’re added to your court file.

You can file your forms and documents with the court online or in person. File your court forms and documents below explains how to do this.

Continuing record

Your partner will have started a court file, which is called the continuing record. The continuing record is 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 figure out where each document goes in the continuing record.

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.

Court fees

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:

  • $161 to file an Answer
  • $202 to file an Answer 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, it 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.

File your court forms and documents

Rule 1.1 tells you how to file and issue your family law court forms and documents online. You can file your documents online or in person at the court. Depending on your family law issue and the court, you might also be able to file by email. Check the Family Law Rules and the court's orders, Notices and Practice Directions. Or call the court for more information.

Rule 1.2 says before you file your documents, you must remove or black out all financial account numbers and certain personal information, such as:

  • social insurance numbers
  • bank account numbers
  • credit card numbers
  • account numbers for mortgages, lines of credit, and other loans

You must keep the original documents that show this information.

A judge might ask to see it.

File online

You can now file most family law forms and supporting documents online for a family court case in the Ontario Court of Justice or the Superior Court of Justice. But you cannot file forms and documents online:

  • to request an urgent hearing
  • for a court date that's 5 business days or less away
  • to meet a filing deadline that's 5 business days or less away

To file online, your court forms and supporting documents must be filled out, signed, and dated. Some forms and documents may need to be sworn or affirmed. If they do, it means you must swear or affirm that the information in your form is true before you sign it. You do this in front of a notary public or commissioner for taking affidavits. This person also signs and dates the form.

Your forms and documents must then be scanned and saved as PDF documents.

If your documents are not in English or French, you need a certified translation. This must also be scanned and saved as a PDF. You can find a translator through the Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario.

To file your court forms and supporting documents online, go to ontario.ca/familyclaims. You will need a ONe-key ID. To create this key you need an email address and have to set up a username and password.

Make sure you have everything ready before you start filing online. Once you've started, your session ends if you're inactive for 15 minutes. Your information won't be saved. You will need to start over again.

After you submit your court forms and documents online, you cannot view them online later. So it's important to keep a copy of everything for your records.

You must also pay your court fees online. If you can't afford to pay the court fees, you can ask for a fee waiver certificate online so that you don't have to pay most court fees.

See the question ‘How do I file court forms for my family law case online’ on Steps to Justice for more information.

Court response

After you file your forms and documents online, you get an email to confirm that your documents have been submitted, but not yet filed with the court. Don't delete the email. You should also print a copy or take a screenshot for your records.

Within 5 business days you find out if your documents have been accepted or rejected. If your documents are:

  • accepted, you get an email confirming your documents have been filed
  • rejected, you get an email saying your documents haven't been filed, the reasons why they were rejected, and that any fees you paid will be refunded

If your documents are rejected, you can either:

  • correct or fix all the things that led to your documents being rejected and then refile online if the deadline to submit them is more than 5 business days away, or
  • file your documents in-person or, if allowed by the court, by email

If you don't hear from the court within 5 days, check with them to make sure your documents were submitted successfully.

If you have any questions about your specific case, call the family court in your municipality.

File in person

If you're not allowed to, or don't want to file your documents online, you can file them in person at the courthouse. To submit in person, take 3 copies of your court forms and documents to court.

If you're not which court to go to, you can call the family court in your municipality to ask.