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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 02-03-2017, 08:35 AM
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Hi Everyone
Please see below the most recent letter form her Lawyer and thoughts on what to do and if anything.


With respect, an agreement such as the homemade agreement that you prepared with Ms.? , that purports to deny her and spousal support notwithstanding the significant disparity in your incomes, the fact you have children together(and that my client prioritized the care of the children over her career and in favour of yours, and the length of your marriage, is unconscionable.

It was clear from your actions that you accepted that some spousal support was owing to Ms? and you engaged in significant discussions with her on this point, proposing various lump sum settlements of this issue. It was only because you were not content with Ms? compromise position that you did not agree to pay spousal support to her.

If this matter proceeds to court, it will be costly for both yourself and Ms?. In addition to any legal costs you may incur defending Ms? claim, please be aware that I will seek an order for the payment of my clients legal costs by you.

I would urge you to reconsider your position on this matter, I will be seeking Ms? instructions to commence an application. In the meantime , should you wish to negotiate a resolution to the spousal support issue , please contact me .
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Old 02-03-2017, 08:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zanman View Post
Hi Everyone
Please see below the most recent letter form her Lawyer and thoughts on what to do and if anything.


With respect, an agreement such as the homemade agreement that you prepared with Ms.? , that purports to deny her and spousal support notwithstanding the significant disparity in your incomes, the fact you have children together(and that my client prioritized the care of the children over her career and in favour of yours, and the length of your marriage, is unconscionable.

It was clear from your actions that you accepted that some spousal support was owing to Ms? and you engaged in significant discussions with her on this point, proposing various lump sum settlements of this issue. It was only because you were not content with Ms? compromise position that you did not agree to pay spousal support to her.

If this matter proceeds to court, it will be costly for both yourself and Ms?. In addition to any legal costs you may incur defending Ms? claim, please be aware that I will seek an order for the payment of my clients legal costs by you.

I would urge you to reconsider your position on this matter, I will be seeking Ms? instructions to commence an application. In the meantime , should you wish to negotiate a resolution to the spousal support issue , please contact me .

lol (at the lawyer)

How long were you guys married for? She work? You work? How did the agreement come to be? Was it witnessed by a lawyer? Did she have her own lawyer? What is in the agreement?

Which province? What level of court?
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Old 02-03-2017, 09:05 AM
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Separated September 2014 married Sept 1999
She worked off and on part time through out our marriage , she has been working full time since

I don't even have a high school diploma, I started in the factory her now work as an inside sales rep. We went to a mediator session together then we decided to by our own agreement and do it together.

We then made an appointment with a lawyer and had it notarized

The agreement contains final settle to any future support in anyway. I bought her out of the house and gave her 45,000 in RRSP.

I live in Ontario Canada
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Old 02-03-2017, 09:08 AM
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I posted this last June on your thread :

"In many decisions I've read regarding SS a judge looks at previously-agreed to separation agreements with particularly focus on what the two parties intended. Nothing very fancy really. In your situation the wording of your SA agreement, along with relevant correspondence between the two of you (which would show how the two of you arrived at your agreement) would be relevant. There is case law regarding SA agreements drawn up by self-represented litigants that you can examine and use in your argument."

If you respond (you are under no obligation to respond and of course I would strongly recommend you retain legal counsel for this very important pre-litigation stage) I would simply reiterate that, after much collaboration, the two of you came to an agreement on (date). I'd say no more.

Remember - the onus is on your ex to show entitlement to SS.
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Old 02-03-2017, 09:50 AM
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Thanks Arabian

I agree we did have our own agreement , and yes I made an offer for this to all go away after I spoke to a Lawyer and I spent thousands of dollars which I didn't want to at all because we did agree that our agreement was a final settlement for current or future support.

I have to stay strong for what I believe in and what we agreed upon when we signed it. ?
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Old 02-03-2017, 11:18 AM
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I think it is important to look at it this way:
a) do you think the agreement you signed with your ex is fair and accurately represents what the two of you intended it to?
b) how old is your ex? Aside from working at a minimum-wage job, what steps has she taken (upgrading for example) to self-sufficiency? Did you address her eventual self-sufficiency in your separation agreement?
c) have you paid her any SS todate? (lump sum?)
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Old 02-03-2017, 11:43 AM
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I have not paid her any SS , when she left in 2014 she did not want it and I also have an email from her in 2016 also indicating she will not pursue spousal if I keep her on my benefits which I agreed also. We did not address her self - sufficiency in our agreement.

She is now 40 years old
She has done nothing since she left. I've heard she has taken courses to become a trainer but I'm not 100%.
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Old 02-03-2017, 12:46 PM
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so she left with nothing? What about the home?

So you are acting in accordance with your separation agreement... is there any part of the agreement that you have not followed-through on?

How long has her lawyer been communicating with you for?

I believe the fact that he has not filed a Notice of Motion speaks to their weak position. A lawyer with a solid position would have/should have filed a motion by now. Sounds as though they are hoping you will be intimidated and cave.

I am not a lawyer though and should you receive a notification that they have filed in court you should seek legal advice. Until that time I'd ignore it.

I
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Old 02-03-2017, 01:02 PM
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I paid her out her equity of the home of $70.000 based on the value which we involved the bank and Lawyers. We split some things in the house and I helped buy some new furniture for her and the kids at her new place.

I am acting in accordance with our agreement. I've done everything 80% of child S7 expenses and have 50/50 custody actually a little more because my girls come to my house everyday after school and have since the day she left. that is why I kept the house because the kids asked for them to not have to change schools and keep all of their current friends. Believe me its a struggle to keep the house and pay child support on my own. If spousal was an issue at the time I would have never been able to keep the house for them. I'm acually paying more in Child support because we agreed to $900.00 a month when she left based on my salary and her at min wage , but since then she has never made over $18,000 so I have adjusted child support accordingly. The first year after she left she took a leave of absence and child support went to $1070.00 per month offset amount.

Her Layer has been communicating for almost 6 months, Me for the past 3 months.
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Old 02-03-2017, 02:18 PM
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You have correspondence from her where she explicitly turned down SS in lieu of you keeping her on your benefits correct?

She has a legal aid lawyer for pursuit of spousal support?

How did you pay her out the 70k - by increasing mortgage on current property or cash or both?

I'd ignore lawyer. However, should you end up in litigation, be mindful that you will have to provide full financial disclosure. This disclosure will include a detailed budget (court form you can get online). In previous posts I believe you mentioned that you were able to actually save money (good for you). If your ex is basing her (likely unsuccessful) application on need basis the budget will come into play. If her lawyer files a Notice of Motion then he has to argue material change of circumstances (that would be specifically something that was not contemplated by the two of you at time of separation). He may try to argue that there was a no ILA (independent legal advice) but you could counter that you both did, indeed, have legal advice (hopefully separate lawyers) at the time of your paying her the 70k.

Or.... you could make a formal offer to settle with very specific conditions:
1) step-down SS by way of imputing income to her. Essentially you would increase her imputed income over a 3 or 4 year period (enough time for her to attend and complete educational upgrading).
2) specific plan received from her on steps to become self-sufficient (upgrading, degree-bearing programme of study leading to employment).

You have worked your way up to the position you are now in. She has essentially done nothing to improve herself insofar as being self-sufficient. A 40-year-old woman would be expected to be on her way to self-sufficiency unless she had to stay home to care for a disabled child or suffered some long-term health issue.

Keep in mind that once you open the door to SS it can be opened up again. This is why there is so much importance placed on the initial separation agreement. People try to cheap-out and do-it-themselves but it can come back to bite them in the ass years down the road.

Also, finally, be aware of lawyers telling you what you want to hear. You have a good steady job and lawyers are business people. You would be considered a good "accounts receivable" and therefore you would likely have little difficulty finding a lawyer to represent you. If you do seek legal advice (which I recommend) you can protect yourself by being as well-versed in SS as possible. There is much information online. CanLii is an excellent resource - you can read judges decisions on cases similar to your own.
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