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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 05-16-2013, 09:40 PM
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Default Ontario Works & Rights to Financial Records

I have shared Custody of my daughter as she is at my place over 50% of the time. For this, we will say 50/50. In a shared custody situation, child support is calculated by taking the higher income parents income and subtracting the lower income parents income.

My daughters mother has just applied for Ontario Works & the worker says that because the mother is now on Ontario Works, I have no legal rights to her financials what so ever.

My daughter's mother & I do not have a custody agreement because I just paid her. I would calculate what I would owe based on a her mother making minimum wage. She did not believe I was entitled to her financials.

Many years later (11 years) I still do not know her financials.

Is it true that now she is on Ontario Works, I have no rights to her financials what so ever????
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Old 05-16-2013, 09:52 PM
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I believe you have rights to financial disclosure, the problem is that social assistance does not count as income. Therefore, whatever OW is paying her, it still counts as zero.

You would have to impute her income as full time minimum wage.
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:05 PM
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Ontario Works is going to have their own set of rules that have nothing to do with family law.

Child Support guidelines use another set of rules, but to be clear, it is the child who has the rights ... to receive appropriate support. Exchanging financial information is just the usual way of going about this, according to the child support guidelines.

If she won't provide you with financials, then you'll just have to make up some $'s and go from there. If she doesn't like it, she can take you to court (which will require her to provide financials to back up her position).
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:49 PM
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If she is on OW, there is nothing to show. She could show you $10 or a million... it still counts as zero for cs purposes.

The only way around this is to impute her with an income. If she worked before, you should impute what she was making. If she is educated, you can try and find out what an average income is for that field. Usually it will just end up being full time min wage.
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Old 05-16-2013, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyDays View Post
I believe you have rights to financial disclosure, the problem is that social assistance does not count as income. Therefore, whatever OW is paying her, it still counts as zero.

You would have to impute her income as full time minimum wage.
I understand her income will be "0", the fact that the Support Worker is not telling me the truth is is upsetting me. This is not the first time the tried to "Miss inform" me about the child support laws. I would just like to know if I have a right to her financials before and after. They require mine, why am I not allowed hers? How am I supposed to know when she comes off of Ontario Work? I do not mind paying what I owe, but FAIR IS FAIR!!!
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Old 05-16-2013, 11:44 PM
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When my ex was on OW, I received all her financials. She sent me her pay stubs, a report from OW on all money paid out, as well as a letter saying when she started OW.

I'm not sure if financial disclosure is a must for OW, but you should be able to request a letter from them confirming the start date. The income is set based on the number of dependants, simply basic needs and shelter, so you can just go to their website and know exactly how much she is being paid minus any cs she is getting.

Regardless, as you know it still counts as "0" for cs. You would have to go with minimum wage in this case.

OW will be on her back to either get a job or retraining. Hopefully she will be honest with you on when it ends, otherwise you just have to keep requesting a letter every couple months to confirm she is still a recipient.

What do you mean by wanting to know her financials before and after?
When children are involved, you should always know eachothers financials. It's just now, she's in the safe house where her financials don't count. Pre and Post OW you should be told. If she doesn't, then you may have to bring her to court.

You say you have the children over 50% of the time. Any chance it is 60%+?

Last edited by GoDiegoGo; 05-16-2013 at 11:48 PM.
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:46 AM
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Ontario Works does not have to disclose anything to you; that information is priviledged and confidential.

Your ex, on the other hand, must still disclose all of their financial information.

I have gone over Contino vs Contino in depth with my lawyer. If you have 50/50, all of section 9 of the child support guidelines applies. The courts interperate this as including ALL INCOME. That includes OW, it includes CCTB. You cannot have an income of $0.

Some judges in some cases may look at both parties' financials and decide that the resulting setoff amount should be 100:0. That is a case-by-case decision based on the information provided. There is no absolute formula for 50/50. Furthermore, it must be clear in the judge's written decision that they considered all the elements of section 9 (a), (b), and (c) in their decision, or else it is subject to appeal.
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mess View Post
Ontario Works does not have to disclose anything to you; that information is priviledged and confidential.

Your ex, on the other hand, must still disclose all of their financial information.
Slight addition to what Mess stated above.

1. Your ex-partner has to provide financial disclosure if there is an open Application before the courts. In Ontario, the Rule governing this is Rule 18 of the Family Law Rules. It requires that both parties make full and frank financial disclosure by affidavit (Form 13.1 or Form 13). Every time you appear before a justice be it on motion, for trial or a conference your Form 13.1/13 needs to be updated and served if it hasn't been done in the past 30 days. Furthermore in accordance with Rule 20 you can request this disclosure at any time and it is always best to serve it using "Form 20: Request for Information". This doesn't obligate the other party to respond but, should a debate about any requests arise for the disclosure you have evidence on the service of Form 20 that it was requested and details of what was requested.

2. If you and your ex-partner have a signed agreement stating that the disclosure shall happen. Usually this is an exchange of financial documentation made in accordance with Rule 21 of the Federal Child Support Guide Lines or a refinement of Rule 21 to specifically list documents to be exchanged. (e.g. NOA, T4, Letters from employers stating income, ...) This will also be usually time boxed to a specific date annually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mess View Post
I have gone over Contino vs Contino in depth with my lawyer. If you have 50/50, all of section 9 of the child support guidelines applies. The courts interpret this as including ALL INCOME. That includes OW, it includes CCTB. You cannot have an income of $0.
But, courts may be reluctant to order child support against Ontario Works recipients. I came across jurisprudence recently to this effect in CanLII. But, it was a sole custodial and majority access situation where the non custodial parent (NCP) was on Ontario Works and full table amounts were to be applied.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mess View Post
Some judges in some cases may look at both parties' financials and decide that the resulting set-off amount should be 100:0. That is a case-by-case decision based on the information provided. There is no absolute formula for 50/50. Furthermore, it must be clear in the judge's written decision that they considered all the elements of section 9 (a), (b), and (c) in their decision, or else it is subject to appeal.
To add to Mess' comment, it is a very detailed and lengthy process to apply Contino vs Contino for a justice. We may not have seen much application of it because the matter ends on settlement once this case law is brought forward by either litigant in the matter and a justice warns at how detailed of an investigation this is and the potential *costs* that could result for either party. Also, many people don't want to have to produce the financial disclosures to satisfy Contino vs Contino as it can get very detailed. Every element of the spending of both parents becomes the focus in the evaluation of section 9.

So, for example, if you say drive a sports car / luxury car and are the litigant requesting more than the set-off amount the evidence of your spending habits won't put you in a positive light potentially. Justices tend not to like the argument of "but the other party makes so much money". They like facts and not fictional needs to pay for gas for a sports car or luxury SUV.

Good Luck!
Tayken
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:54 AM
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^ All true.
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Old 05-17-2013, 03:22 PM
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I definitely messed up by not filing an appeal in time.

My ex received OW, child tax benefits, cs from 1st husband, etc. Totaling more income than my disability benefits pay. All elements of section 9 weren't taken into account, because with 50/50 she got "0" income and I have to pay full table cs plus ss.

That judge did say she should have an income imputed, include several conference judges, but they said to let the trial judge decide. I've sent several offers for min wage, but it's always refused despite her multiple degrees and work experience...
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