Marriage is a wonderful institution…until it is not anymore. Sometimes, people who once loved each other do not any longer, and a divorce is inevitable. When this happens, there will be issues with monies, marital assets, children and other things for which it is important to retain a Divorce Lawyer In Ontario.
One important issue that is likely to arise is spousal support.
A Divorce Lawyer In Ontario will know that, in this province, the law views marital relationships as economic partnerships. Although Ontario expects adults to aim to be self-sufficient so that they can take care of their own needs, when the partnership breaks down, the person with more money might be charged with supporting the other. The basis for this idea is that often, during a marriage, one spouse spends more time looking after the home and the children and as a result, does not have the same opportunity to earn money as the non-primary caregiver. As they will have less salary, fewer marketable skills and no pension plan, that spouse is at a significant economic disadvantage.
When determining the amount of support to award to one spouse from the other, Ontario law requires judges to consider how much the person asking for support needs to live and the ability of the other spouse to pay. Also, couples who have been together for a short time will get support on a shorter-term basis, the idea being that support payments can offer a person the chance to return to school or procure job training.
Some spouses, due to factors such as being out of the work force for a long period of time, might not be able to become financially independent. In such cases, long-term support may be awarded, the Court taking into consideration the following factors:
Of course, couples can agree on amounts of spousal support, even using guidelines provided by the government that provide a range of suggested spousal support amounts based on the age of the spouse receiving support, the length of the marriage and the presence or absence of child support.
Another important issue for divorcing couples is the payment of child support. Although all parents love their children, it often seems that neither wants to pay more than they have to.
Canada’s federal Child Support Guidelines provide Child Support Tables that provide a base amount each parent will pay for child support, based on factors such as (i) the province you live in, (ii) the number of children you’ll be paying support for, and (iii) the amount of money you earn.
Adding to this base amount are “special or extraordinary expenses” such as daycare, medical expenses, some extra-curricular activities, private school and post-secondary education. A parent’s payment is typically proportional to his or her income.
Exceptions to the base amount may arise if:
The requirement to pay child support continues through schooling but then typically ends, although it may be extended further.
Believe it or not, child support is still required in cases where (1) the parents were never married, (2) the other parent earns more than you, (3) you do not see your child, (4) you remarry and (5) you have additional children in a new marriage.
Child support may be modified in situations where a parent’s incomes goes either up or down. Although some agreements and orders have a built-in mechanism for periodic adjustments of child support payments, modification proceedings may be brought to seek a just amount of payment for each parent, something for which it is a great idea to retain a divorce lawyer In Ontario.
In sum, there are many factors relevant to divorce in Canada. Discussed above are only two of them. Either way, it is clear that retaining competent divorce lawyers in Ontario is essential to protect your rights and make sure your children are taken care of.