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Financial Issues This forum is for discussing any of the financial issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 11-12-2009, 05:33 PM
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Default Imputing Income to the Recipient

Hi there...recently separated...2 school age children who live with each of us 50%...I currently make 75% of the total family income...I pay child and spousal support...she only works part-time (70%) of full time and therefore is capable of earning 30% more than she is ($40k vs $28k). I know there is full time work available to her because we work for the same company and I have access to the postings. That aside, she could work anywhere else on the 1.5 days per week that she is not scheduled to work. Her current hours are consistently the same hours week by week, and have been for over 2 years. She seems to have zero interest in pursuing full time hours. When I have asked her about it, I am told that it is none of my business.

We are coming up on tax time and as per our separation agreement, we are recalculating the support amounts annually, at tax time (spring). I am starting to arm myself with some info on what I can do to resolve what I feel is an unfair situation.

Any suggestions on how to proceed would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-12-2009, 06:15 PM
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I understand your point. I'm sure she would not be agreeable to you reducing your work to 3.5 days, with corresponding CS reduction! I'd expect that in taking this to court you would run into the blatantly acknowledged/institutionalized double standard in family law that says the man is responsible for providing $$, the woman - not so much.

The kids are school-age, so I guess she is not saving on daycare for those 1.5 days?

I could give you a referral to a Toronto lawyer who is sensitive to these types of biases, and has given good practical+tactical advice...PM?
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Old 11-12-2009, 06:31 PM
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Impute her a full income. My husband took the advice of the lawyer not to impute his ex an income, cause she was going to "school" and a judge wouldn't do it, as she was "bettering" herself for the kids.

Well, 8 years later and with us paying 100% of all extra expenses, she finally got a job. It pays so little her share is around 16%, which we never get from her and there is no way to force her except court (too expensive for the piddly amount we'd get back!)

My point in rambling on is, the sooner she understands she has a responsibility too, the less chance of the situation degrading into a worse situation for you. And don't always listen to your lawyer, some of them give BAD advice!
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Old 11-13-2009, 01:11 PM
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I discussed this with my lawyer some time ago. My ex worked 4 days per week, while I worked 5.

From what I understood, CS is from line 150 unless she's dependant on someone else. If she's married to a millionaire, you can make assumptions and make up an income. CS is to bring up the standard of living of the child while she's living with your ex. It's hard to presume how much she could make, so a judge will say he won't punish the child, it's much easier to punish the paying parent.

For SS and I believe for special expenses, you can make assumptions. I made a spreadsheet with her actual salary and her "full time" salary. I used this amount for special expenses and to calculate if I had to provide spousal support.

If you went to court, you might get somewhere, but I doubt you'd save money in the end. Legal costs would probably far outweigh any savings you got. You could make an offer, maybe right down the middle. Take an average of her actual salary, and if she was working.

Good luck
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Old 11-13-2009, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foredeck View Post
...so a judge will say he won't punish the child, it's much easier to punish the paying parent.
In interesting statement, that illustrates the common belief that the mother is not ALSO a paying parent. Just because the 'net' flow of support $$s is from father to mother in this case, does not mean that she is not also supporting the child. The courts should hold her responsible for paying *her share*.

Foredeck, I didn't mean to nitpick your statement or imply you were attempting to justify this situation.
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Old 11-13-2009, 02:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dinkyface View Post
In interesting statement, that illustrates the belief that the mother is not ALSO a paying parent. Just because the 'net' flow of support $$s is from father to mother in this case, does not mean that she is not also supporting the child. The courts should hold her responsible for paying *her share*.

Foredeck, I didn't mean to nitpick your statement or imply you were attempting to justify this situation.
I didn't say I agreed with it. It is what it is.

I personally think it's not fair, and it's not necessarly what's in the law, however, judges are human, and they put their personal opinion in judgments, especially when dealing with children.

If a judge ruled that a mother who did not work at all shouldn't receive any SS/CS at all, the child would live in poverty when in her care. This is an extreme situation, but it is the facts. And, it's brought up many times in these forums and in current events. There are no incentives to get non-paying parents to work or increase their salary.

I have a close acquaintance that just kept studying because the minute she started working, she'd have to pay 800$ per month in CS. So, to spite her ex, she kept on studying and refused to send him money.
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Old 11-13-2009, 02:28 PM
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As I mentioned, I should be able to impute a full time income against her because I know there are positions available, I know how much she makes per hour, the kids are in school through the week...I have them 1/2 the time and I work full time etc..etc.

I'm concerned that what it will cost me to sort this out will outweigh what I will save every month. I'm paying $800 CS and $400 SS as it is. I gusstimate that I would be paying around $200 less (total) if she were working full time.

Can I do this on my own without involving a lawyer?
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Old 11-13-2009, 02:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KnotUntied View Post
Can I do this on my own without involving a lawyer?
You can try. It really depends on her, if she disputes it, you will have to decide to pursue it or drop it.

The starting point is the tax return, if you want anything else, you have to negotiate or go to court. That's why maybe going halfway, might be the best option. You would both save on legal fees.
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Old 11-16-2009, 12:33 PM
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Thanks....half way sounds like a good negotiation tactic. I can suggest that we calculate her full time gross income of pay versus her part time gross...and find the half way mark. Then calculate the new support payment amounts based on the half way mark. Offer that as an alternative to court action and legal fees.

Wish me luck.
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