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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 09-17-2016, 04:36 PM
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Default How long, and how much child support should I be paying?

Hi. I am a 47 year old divorced man. My ex-wife and I separated in 2002, and divorced back in 2004. I have since been residing with my current common law partner along with her three children. My son has just turned 19 recently. Currently, he still resides with his mother. At present, he still has not completed all his high school credits. He and his mother (my ex-wife) met with me some time back in July of 2015 (when he turned 18), indicating to me he will be returning to school in the September following, and therefore still require child support (despite surpassing the age of 18). They (my son and his mother) had indicated that he intends on applying to, and attending Sheridan College for two different programs in the future. This appears to be a moot point anyway, since he still hadn't completed all his high school credits at the time (he was 6 and a half credits short of completing his high school diploma). It appears the high school he has been "attending" since 2014 is Peel Alternative North ISR, which is a learning institution for adults and students who failed to complete all of their high school credits in which they are provided with the learning material and instruction once a week, and then allowed to complete assignments at a time that suits their comfort level or life schedule. This is not a normal secondary school where they are required to attend Monday to Friday with a full course load. My understanding is that child support ends at the age of 18, UNLESS he/she continues to attend school FULL TIME (during which time he/she cannot work and therefore requires continued financial support), OR once he/she reaches age 25 in which it ends PERIOD (whether still attending school or not). Fast forward to around August 25th 2016, my ex-wife and son came to our place again, to discuss his schooling intentions (so he has now turned 19). This was after I delayed in paying my monthly child support to her for that month, after leaving numerous messages to her to inquire about our son's schooling status, that she failed to respond to. I have a few questions/concerns pertaining to my specific situation that I would like some answers to, with regards to whether or not any action on my part is warranted. My ex-wife advised me that our son cannot work because "it would impact her ODSP" since he still resides with her. To me, her being on ODSP (disability) should not be a good reason to prevent my son from working, if he were to choose to get a job. The week that followed after that visit, my partner and I went to our local courthouse to speak to a duty counsel in the family law division of the courthouse (FLIC). Upon describing the situation I'm in, along with the learning institution my son is enrolled in, she immediately yanked out some papers, advising me to fill them out to submit to the courts. It is a motion 15 to TERMINATE child support order. If she (my ex-wife) is intent on "milking the system", I could care less. What I do care about, is if it comes at MY expense (and our son's). Secondly, does it matter if our son chooses to attend school full time or part time (as in one course per semester versus a full course load) to impact how much child support I SHOULD be paying? For clarity, I am not dealing with FRO (both my ex and myself consented to opt out of FRO at our divorce). And my son is not a special needs person with any medical or mental health issues. Now fast forward to last week, my ex-wife and son finally coughed up his current transcripts, along with this year's timetable (he only needs to attend every Monday from 10AM to 3PM and every Friday from 1PM to 3PM) after repeated persistent requests. It appears he's only earned 1 and a half credits between last year and this year!!! Having said all that, what is the likelihood that I will be successfully granted the motion to terminate all child support? It also appears I have been OVERPAYING for last year, if he's only achieved 1.5 credits he's either NOT attended any school, and/or failed some of his courses. Is their a possibility that my ex could be ordered to reimburse the overpayment (if it is deemed that I've been overpaying for a year)? So, for clarity, my son still needs to attain five more credits to finish high school and he's pushing 20 this July coming up in 2017. College isn't even a discussion I am willing to entertain at this point after looking at the majority of the marks I saw on his transcripts. Thank you in advance, for those who have the patience to read.
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Old 09-17-2016, 05:28 PM
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without him being not being disabled and in school part time at best you have a good reason to terminate CS. Get the form filled out and get it done ASAP
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Old 09-17-2016, 06:55 PM
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You will need to terminate child support immediately and file it with the court as your ex could file any order/agreement you HAD with FRO regardless of his age and school status. FRO doesnt care.

If he does finish school and decides to go into a full time education program at Sheridan you will be required to cover your portion of expenses but you could argue that the overpyament of cs is applied.

Your ex is milking the system and your son is helping her.
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Old 09-18-2016, 04:10 PM
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Just to add some more information, I've been paying CS religiously on or about the 18th of every month, while adjusting the amount on the June of every year to reflect the proper table amount relative to the passing year's income. I have NOT had bi-weekly visits with my son since around 2007, due to him telling me that he was "uncomfortable" with staying with me on the alternating weekends as was originally mandated by our original separation agreement. I have never bothered to press the issue, figuring if he chooses to have a relationship with me, I'll let it come when he's comfortable.

But back to the topic of this post, my partner and I have an appointment with a family law lawyer this week for a consultation, as well as assist me with filling out the paperwork to put the motion in. I am very curious if my son's poor marks on his transcripts, including three courses showing a mark value of 1% for the 2014/2015 school year is going to be a determining factor to whether or not I will be granted the motion successfully to outright terminate CS. She has been on ODSP since our separation, and I've been steadily employed at the same place since 2005. Along with my partner now being employed in the same profession but different position, the economic advantage in my household is obvious. I am extremely hopeful this doesn't work against me.
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Old 09-18-2016, 04:26 PM
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If he is 18 and not in school full time with no plans to attend post secondary this year then you are not obligated to pay child support for him anymore. Especially if he is not even attempting to get adequate grades. Most kids at 18 who arent in school and still receiving cs are normally on a "gap year" before heading to post secondary and cs is normally still applicable. At your sons rate, he may not even be eligible for college next year. Theres no question you are not obligated to pay support for him. He is no longer a child of the marriage within the definitions.

Visitation/access has no bearing on the cs and dont even bring it in. There are plenty of parents (my partner included) who pay full cs while not having any relationship with their children. Youre obligated to pay if the child is a "child of the marriage". Even kids who are in college/university are still eligible for support when they refuse to have a relationship with the support payor. Thats a hole you dont need to go down right now.
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Old 09-18-2016, 11:21 PM
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He's over 18, he's not in school full-time (and has no realistic likelihood of doing so any time soon), and he's not disabled. It sounds open-and-shut to me - he isn't a child of marriage any more so no CS is payable on his behalf. Your income, your ex's ODSP, your kid's half-hearted part-time schooling is all irrelevant. He doesn't meet the criteria for CS any more. Send your ex a letter saying the same, and stop paying (file your form 15).

I think your chances of recovering any overpayment of CS are pretty slim, especially if she's on ODSP and would have a hard time coming up with the money, but you can at least stop the outflow of money now.
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Old 09-21-2016, 05:19 PM
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Okay folks, upon presenting the information detailed in the first post of this thread to a lawyer, here's what I've been presented with:

-the lawyer wants me to file the motion dating back to July of 2015 (when my son turned 18).

-if I stop paying CS from this date forward, my ex could go to the FRO to get them to come after me BUT in doing so, she is setting herself up for having to disclose to FRO that she's on ODSP, and/or that she will have to disclose to ODSP that I've stopped paying CS (if she didn't already disclose that she was still collecting it from me even though our son turned 18).

-the possible outcomes are that she would be willing to settle (fat chance of that happening) after the 1st, 2nd or 3rd settlement conferences, or it could go out to a full blown trial with the end result being that she will have to repay the overpayment however long it takes to collect on that (but with every passing month that I continue to pay is only accruing more and more that she will owe back to me).

So, where I stand on this matter at present is having to fill out all the paperwork to be submitted to move on with this. The only question I have is, even if I stop paying now going forward, and FRO does in fact come after me, will FRO garnish HER income to give back to me, once the judgement goes in my favor that I have in fact been overpaying, like what I was made to understand by the lawyer? Either way, at this point all I care about is making it all legal for CS to end COMPLETELY now, and in the future (if my son does even miraculously manage to get enrolled in college in God knows how many years from now). I can't believe what is seemingly such a cut and dry situation is still such a complicated process to go through!!!
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Old 09-21-2016, 05:31 PM
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FRO could get an order to recover the money but its my understanding that they cannot garnish disability payments (or welfare) so really you wouldnt see anything unless she gets a job or tax return money.
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Old 09-21-2016, 08:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockscan View Post
FRO could get an order to recover the money but its my understanding that they cannot garnish disability payments (or welfare) so really you wouldnt see anything unless she gets a job or tax return money.
According to the lawyer, I was informed otherwise. IF.... judgement were to be deemed in my favour that I have in fact been overpaying, FRO would deduct her ODSP cheque by whatever amount for every month until the overpayment is satisfied. As far as her getting a job? That seems extremely unlikely.
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Old 09-21-2016, 09:19 PM
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You can check this out yourself.

there is much information available on the internet

As an Ontario Disability Support Program recipient: Your responsibilities

I don't think you will have to go all the way to trial (although your lawyer would like that as he will make oodles of money). If you have evidence that your ex did not report child support while receiving social benefit payments then she will most likely be cut off of those social benefit payments. In the rare situation where someone has to repay, but still collects welfare, the repayment would be somewhere around 10.00/month so you will be an old man by that time.

What you can hope to gain is an Order (unenforceable as long as she is receiving social welfare benefits). Once she gets a job (after being cut off) then she will have to negotiate a repayment schedule with FRO or she will lose her drivers license and face garnishment from her employer.


In summary - you will wait a very long time to recoup any over payment IMO.

Give careful thought to pulling the rug out from under her because it would in fact affect your son, who is yet to be determined whether or not he is still considered a "child of the marriage."
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