Divorce & Separation


At Bortolussi Family Law in Vaughan, our family lawyers have been representing clients going through separation and divorce for nearly four decades. Since opening in 1984, we have built our reputation on achieving positive results for our clients. Our lawyers take the time to truly listen to each client’s goals before determining the best approach to take. By keeping clients informed throughout the separation and divorce process, we instill confidence and help to reduce the stress that often comes with a family dispute, no matter how amicable it may be.


For married couples, separation occurs when one or both parties indicate their desire to end the relationship, and the parties begin living “separately and apart”. Living “separately and apart” refers to married spouses living independently of one another, with respect to day-to-day activities, with no reasonable prospect of reconciliation. It’s not necessary for each person to live in a separate residence, but they must be living separate lives. In fact, many couples find it more economical to remain in the family home throughout their separation


Divorce is the legal termination of a marriage. A couple does not become divorced until a court has granted an order dissolving a legal marriage. A divorce order terminates each person’s legal status as a “spouse”, enabling them to remarry. Note that a divorce only applies to legally married spouses. Common law couples are not legally married under the law, and therefore do not require a court order to separate.


Whether ending a legal marriage or a common law partnership, family property and other assets will have to be divided. To ensure property and assets are fairly and equitably divided, it is important to work with a lawyer as soon as possible to create a comprehensive inventory of all family assets. Time is of the essence when it comes to preserving and minimizing the risk of asset depletion.

At Bortolussi Family Law, our divorce lawyers have extensive experience assisting clients through the property division process and are highly adept at uncovering hidden assets, identifying missing items and spotting suspicious irregularities. We regularly work with third party forensic accountants and valuators to ensure nothing is left unaccounted for when calculating a fair division of family property.

Clients with particularly complex finances benefit from our firms’ unique matching process which pairs them with the lawyers who have considerable in-depth knowledge and experience working with complicated family finances and business interests.

We represent clients in the following areas relating to property division:


Spousal support is ongoing financial support paid by the spouse who is in a more advantageous financial situation at the time of divorce or separation.

Child support is financial support paid, usually by the parent with less physical parenting time with the children, to the other parent. While terms and obligations regarding spousal support may be predetermined in a marriage contract or cohabitation agreement, child support may not. Child support is something that can only be determined at the time of separation.

Our family lawyers will carefully review all relevant financial information to determine your support obligations or entitlement. If you are entitled to support, we will ensure you receive the payments you are entitled to. If you are obligated to pay support, we will ensure you do not pay more than your fair share under the law. We routinely help clients with the following support matters:

  • Child Support
  • Spousal Support
  • Support Variation (when a post-separation change in circumstances necessitates a change in an existing support order)


Parenting issues are often the most contentious aspect of a divorce or separation. There are strong emotions involved, and the outcome has the potential to affect the parents’ relationship with their child(ren) for years to come. Even in an otherwise amicable situation, conflict can often arise when it comes to parenting matters.

For this reason, it is vital to have an experienced and compassionate family lawyer representing your interests. At Bortolussi Family Law, we focus on preserving parental relationships and minimizing conflict. We always advocate for the best interests of the children in any parenting dispute. With this in mind, we do not participate in, nor are we affected by, bullying tactics that make resolution more difficult on the entire family. Whether making initial parenting arrangements or revisiting issues after a change in your family’s circumstances, our divorce lawyers work to preserve your relationships, both for the sake of your children and your pocketbook.

Our firm regularly represents clients in the following parenting and access matters:


At Bortolussi Family Law, our divorce and separation lawyers work with clients facing a separation and/or divorce to help them resolve their issues with minimal conflict. We strive to ensure a fair and equitable result for every client and focus on maintaining a productive family dynamic whenever possible.

From our office in Vaughan, we assist clients from across the Greater Toronto Area, extending out to Mississauga, Brampton, Caledon, Whitchurch-Stouffville, Woodbridge, Maple, Kleinburg, Caledon, Concord, Vaughan, Bolton, Nobleton, Markham, and Etobicoke and all areas in between with all aspects of the breakdown of a relationship. Even in the most complex cases, our team has the experience to manage your situation and obtain an optimal result. We provide the comprehensive skills of a Bay Street firm, conveniently located north of Steeles Avenue. To discuss your circumstances and learn about the options available to you, please reach out to us online or by phone at 416-987-3300.

“The lawyers at Bortolussi Family Law were friendly, professional, and very informative, always ready to answer any questions I may have had. I would highly recommend their services.” D.Z.

Recent Posts

FAQs About Family Mediation in Ontario

Family Law Mediation

FAQs About Family Mediation in Ontario

October 24, 2023

Ontario Family Law Considerations for Cottage Properties


Ontario Family Law Considerations for Cottage Properties

October 17, 2023

Substantial Legal Costs May Be Awarded in Cases of Parental Alienation


Substantial Legal Costs May Be Awarded in Cases of Parental Alienation

October 11, 2023

Claims Under the Tort of Family Violence


Claims Under the Tort of Family Violence

June 9, 2023

Mediation and Collaborative Law - What is the Difference?

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Mediation and Collaborative Law - What is the Difference?

June 1, 2023