Canada, Central Registry of Divorce Proceedings (National Institute)

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The original content for this article was contributed by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies in June 2012. It is an excerpt from their course Canadian Vital Statistics Records Part 2  by by Sharon L. Murphy. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).

In 1968 the Canadian Department of Justice set up the Central Registry of Divorce Proceedings on a national level to avoid duplication of proceedings in different jurisdictions, as a complement to the 1968 Divorce Act. The information is entered into a database for their internal purposes. To quote from their website, “At any given time, about 140,000 divorce actions are pending in Canada.” Federal privacy and access to information legislation are fully in force regarding the content of the database.

However, it is possible to obtain some basic information from them if you can provide the name of the divorcing parties. This is very useful if you do not know in which province or district or county the divorce action was heard, from 1968 onwards. If they do find the names in their database you can be given the number of the courthouse where the divorce action took place, the file number and the year. These are essential for retrieving any documents about the divorce. Requests are only received on applications from the address below. Application forms can be found on theCentral Registry of Divorce Proceedings website .

Family Law Assistance Services
Central Registry of Divorce Proceedings
P.O. Box 2730, Station D
Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5W7

Parliamentary Divorce Act

Divorce Act23bF.jpg


Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online courses Canadian Vital Statistics Records Part 2 offered by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. To learn more about these courses or other courses available from the Institute, see our website. We can be contacted at

We welcome updates and additions to this Wiki page.