The following constitutes general principles only and not legal advice. Every situation is different. You should consult a lawyer, and you should not obtain legal advice from a website.
In BC, child support remains payable for any child under the age of 19 so long as they have not withdrawn from the charge of their parents, and it can remain payable for children over the age of 19 who are unable to withdraw from the charge of their parents. A child might be unable to withdraw from the charge of their parents for a number of reasons, but the two most common are a disability or post-secondary education. Child support in such scenarios may deviate from the Federal Child Support Guidelines depending on a number of factors, but will ultimately reflect the “condition, means, needs and other circumstances of the child and the financial ability of each spouse to contribute to the support of the child.”
Child support is a right of the child(ren), and as such, it cannot be waived by a parent. There is no absolute requirement that a parent ask for child support, but they cannot waive the right to seek it in the future.
We have a court order or agreement regarding parenting time, but I am legitimately afraid for the safety of the Child(ren) if they go back to him/her.
a. You are not required to put your children into a dangerous situation just because there is an agreement or court order, however, if you do make a decision to deny the other parent his/her parenting time on that basis, you should be prepared for the other parent to apply to the courts for his/her parenting time to be restored and to be given make-up time for any parenting time lost.
b. If you are legitimately concerned for the safety of your child(ren) when they are in the other parent’s care, it is appropriate for you to call the Ministry of Children and Family Development and report your concern and a social worker will investigate the matter and take whatever action may be required to ensure the safety of the child(ren).
We have a parenting agreement or court order, can I move to a different community with the children?
a. The Family Law Act provides that a parents in such circumstances provide the other parent with 60 days’ notice of their intended move, and the other parent will have 30 days to bring an application to the court to prevent that move.
b. If the move is opposed, several factors will be relevant to whether the court will act to prevent the proposed move, including but not limited to whether the children lived primarily with the moving parent or whether it was an approximately equal arrangement, and the plan for the other parent to continue to be involved in the children’s lives. If the present arrangement was that the children were shared between the parties on an approximately equal basis, the person proposing the move will have a more difficult case to meet.
Parenting time and child support are distinct issues and should not be combined. It is not OK to cut off child support because you are being denied parenting time, and it is not OK to cut off the other party’s parenting time because s/he hasn’t paid his/her child support.
Whether a person will be entitled to receive Spousal Support requires consideration of several factors, not the least of which is the degree of financial dependence during the relationship, the difference in incomes of the parties, and whether either party was economically deprived due to circumstances arising from the marriage (or marriage-like relationship). The amount and duration of such support will also vary depending on the length of the relationship and the ability of the recipient to become financially independent. Spousal Support is often considered along with the division of assets and debts. It may be, for example, that Spousal Support may be reduced or even eliminated dividing the family assets and debts unequally and in favour of the recipient spouse.
a. Family assets generally refer to assets (real property, pensions, savings, RRSPs, stocks, businesses, vehicles, etc.) that are acquired during the course of the relationship by either or both parties. This also includes the growth in the value or equity of an asset that itself predated the relationship. For example, if the former family home had $30,000.00 of equity when the parties started living together, and $100,000.00 of equity when they split up, there would be $70,000.00 worth of family property that would need to be divided between the two parties. The original $30,000.00 worth of equity would be an excluded asset claimable by the party who owned the home immediately prior to the parties commencing their marriage or marriage-like relationship.
b. Family debts are similar insofar as generally speaking, any debt that was entered into by either party or the two of them together during a relationship is a family debt.
Under section 9 of the Federal Child Support Guidelines, the court may adjust child support in a situation in which the parents share the children on an approximately equal basis (generally understood that each of the parents have the child(ren) at least 40% of the time) so that the amount the parent with the larger income pays is set-off by the amount that the other parent would pay. Note that while this is often done, it is not mandatory and the court has the discretion to find that it would not apply a lower set-off or even no set-off at all.
Child support is determined by the gross annual income of the payor parent and the number of children for which support is paid. The Federal Child Support Guidelines determine this amount. While variation from the set amount can happen due to such things as undue hardship or to allow for unusually high costs associated with exercising parenting time by the payor parent, generally you should expect that what the Federal Child Support Guidelines call for is what will be paid.
a. Generally, once a common-law couple has been together for two years, they have equal rights/obligations as a married couple which could include such things as division of family assets and debts and spousal support; however
b. There is a strict time limit to when orders for division of family assets and spousal support can be sought, and that’s two years from the time of separation for unmarried couples, and two years after the divorce for married couples. If you were living common-law, you need make any claim you may have for a division of assets/debts or for spousal support before those two years have lapsed.
Disclaimer: Please note that this website provides general legal information only and nothing within it should be considered to be legal advice. You should consult a lawyer to obtain legal advice about your particular legal matter. No solicitor/client relationship is created by using this site.