Spousal Support: Post Separation Income Increases

Spousal Support: Post Separation Income Increases

When a separation occurs, sometimes the spouse with the higher income will pay spousal support based upon their income. But what happens if the payor spouse then receives a generous promotion, or their income increases for any other reason? In this post, Daniel Duyvelshoff, a Fresh Legal intern from the University of Ottawa law school, looks at how a post-separation income increase can impact a spousal support obligation.

Read More

Spousal Support: Retirement and Pensions, Part 2

Spousal Support: Retirement and Pensions, Part 2

In this post, Daniel Duyvelshoff, a Fresh Legal intern from the University of Ottawa law school, looks at Melis v Zwanenburg to see what a court considers before allowing double dipping. After 18 years of marriage, Caroline Melis and Cornelis Zwanenburg separated in 2006. In their divorce order, Cornelis received a substantial equalization payment from Caroline’s federal pension, and also received spousal support from Caroline. The court had to consider whether the unequalized portion of Caroline’s pension should be incorporated in calculating the amount of support of which Cornelis may be entitled.

Read More

Spousal Support: Retirement and Pension Income

Spousal Support: Retirement and Pension Income

A rising trend in family law is the phenomenon known as “grey divorces”: older couples separating after a long-term marriage. But how much support is a spouse obligated to provide when retirement is one or two chapters away and the ability to “turn over a new page” becomes significantly harder? In a previous post, we shared a primer on spousal support. In this post, Daniel Duyvelshoff, a Fresh Legal intern from the University of Ottawa law school, discusses the role of pensions in grey divorce support obligations.

Read More

Finances: Disclosure From New Partners

Finances: Disclosure From New Partners

Your spouse may move in with someone new, and their partner may contribute to the overall costs/expenses of the household.  This might impact the amount of spousal support payable based on that contribution. In order to assess what impact re-partnering has on spousal support, some financial disclosure from the new partner may be necessary. In this post we will discuss the limits on how much disclosure you can request from your ex’s new partner with reference to a recent court decision dealing specifically with this issue.

Read More

Motions to Change: Spousal Support, Part 2

Motions to Change: Spousal Support, Part 2

In our previous post, we reviewed what you must prove on a Motion to Change spousal support.  In this post, we review some cases where judges considered requests to change spousal support. What do judges consider to be a change? When will they order a variation?  Reviewing past cases helps us understand how judges will apply the law.

Read More

Motions to Change: Spousal Support

Motions to Change: Spousal Support

As with child support, in Order to successfully obtain an Order varying spousal support, you must satisfy the material change in circumstances test. You have to be able to show that there has been a material change in the condition, means, needs or other circumstances of either former spouse since the initial spousal support Order, or the last variation Order made in respect of the initial Order. This change must be “material” and not trivial or insignificant, and the onus is on the party seeking a variation to prove the change occurred.

Read More

Court Procedure: Motions to Change

Court Procedure: Motions to Change

One or both of the parties' situations may change significantly after a court Order is made, and the terms may no longer reflect reality. When this happens, it will be necessary to bring a Motion to Change.  The procedure for Motions to Change is set out in Rule 15 of the Family Law Rules. In this post we will answer some frequently asked questions about this procedure.

Read More

Stay At Home Parents: What are my rights when we separate?

Stay At Home Parents: What are my rights when we separate?

When one spouse is able to build up savings, work experience, assets, and other benefits from working, the law recognizes that the other spouse may have contributed to these things.  If you were married, the division of your property is based in part on this assumption.  The law does differ if you were married or living together, but in either case you will be requesting similar things - a share of property, and support for you and your children.

Read More