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

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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 01-24-2017, 01:15 PM
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It's a compromise because you're not getting exactly what you want (Kid goes to school at home) and Dad and Kid aren't getting exactly what they want (Kid gets to spend four years partying somewhere while parents pick up the tab). Giving her a trial year to go to university away from home with conditions (must maintain a B- average in a regular degree programme, must live on campus) gives Kid a chance to earn the privilege of attending university on her own. And if she blows it, you're in a much stronger position to say that you aren't willing to contribute to her university education away from home because she's demonstrated that she can't handle it.

Any agreement you and Dad make can always be revisited by one of you or reopened in mediation. But having some sort of agreement in writing is better than nothing.
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Old 01-24-2017, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockscan View Post
Unfortunately there is no easy answer to your dilemma. Reasons being:
A) you reached an agreement through mediation
B) you didnt follow that agreement
C) you allowed your child to choose

It doesnt matter who is at fault here, you are now in a position where it is a crapshoot what a court would decide.

In which case the law would be considered. Lewi v Lewi is the major case that is followed. Kids are responsible for a portion of expenses. That portion is higher if they go away. Parents are responsible for the rest.

You have to decide if its worth 25,000 and up in legal fees to fight it.

Best case scenario, you make an offer: if she goes away it has to be a reasonable program with future employment possibilities; she has to cover her tuition (if she is eligible for grants she must apply-OSAP offers up to 30% off tuition); you and your ex split the cost for residence (insist she spend her first year in residence as there are rules on drugs, alcohol and partying), books, and reasonable costs like medications/supplies etc. Transportation home is paid for by the parent she visits.

Going away to school isnt a bad thing and some kids smarten up. If you also insist on a specific grade expectation (ie no failures, nothing less than a c+) then there is a certain level of responsibility.

This is one of those closing the barn doors situations. You both allowed this behaviour in your kid. You allowed her to choose. Now you are stuck with it. The courts will order you both to split her costs anyway, might as well set a limit on what is paid for. Tuition is ~$8000 and residence/other costs will run ~$15,000 total. This is about 1/3 but still puts responsibility on kid.
We did reach an agreement early in the last year of my youngest's high school. I'm not sure what you mean by "you didn't stick to it". We absolutely did stick to it. The thinking was that they were both going into adulthood and we didn't see telling them they have to legally be 50/50 with each of us. So we agreed they would stay where they like and see us as they like. My ex moved from the town we both lived in, in the winter of that year. My youngest finished her school year out and planned to take a year off as the oldest did.
As I'm sure anyone is aware that parenting when kids live in two places isn't always easy. I am home every night, have expectations (the kids do their homework, work at some employment, clean their bathroom and their areas weekly and as they have gotten older they cook a meal here and there, or help prepare it, and do their laundry). I don't condone or allow drug use - I think it is harmful, especially to teens, as their brains are developing still. When I say all of that, I'm sure it sounds boring and anal but their is a lot of responsibility and freedom that comes with being an adult and my goal has always been the gradual release of responsibility. And to celebrate it. But everything went south for my youngest. It was never easy, the kids always fought a lot, swearing at each other, when they came from their dad's. He's out late a lot or away on trips. So when you say "you are both responsible" for my youngest's behaviour, I have to disagree. When she was with me, she was much more settled. She had boundaries and expectations of respect. We could talk. Now she is like a whole different person. It is very hard to see your kids go like this. And it isn't like I could've gone to a lawyer because it is different parenting styles at the end of the day. When my ex and I spoke about my daughter's drug use, he was on board and concerned. We agreed on consequences and strategies going forward and our united front brought her back to reality finally. That lasted until she went to his house and he decided she'd had enough unilaterally because he would rather be liked by her than parent her. An enabled, spoiled child is not something that you go to court over.

I would think that a precedent would be set with the agreement and plan working out with the first child, the second child would expect the same. Why would my ex husband be allowed to not do anything to help my first - or go along with choosing not to help the first child but now try to get financial support for the second?
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Old 01-24-2017, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by blwl View Post
Stripes, how is this a compromise. It seems like any of these so called written agreements become invalidated very quickly when one wants to dispute it. my own written separation agreement doesn't seem to be worth the paper it's written on.
This is what I'm upset about! I agree with you!
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Old 01-24-2017, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Star7ontario View Post
Why would my ex husband be allowed to not do anything to help my first - or go along with choosing not to help the first child but now try to get financial support for the second?
Your children are different. Perhaps it was in the bests interests of the first to gain her independence, and perhaps it is in the best interests of the second to have the parents pay for an education in a different town.

Normally, the parents would discuss it amongst themselves and figure out what works in their budget. In family law world, parents have to fund the education of their children. It is wonky, it is wrong, it is not even law... but it is case law, and that makes it even stronger than law.
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Old 01-24-2017, 03:19 PM
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I would like to see the case law on this. Because a person wants to do something does not just automatically equal what is their "best interest".
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Old 01-24-2017, 03:38 PM
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Your original post made reference to how YOU helped your oldest and you are helping her with any debt. Did you seek anything from your ex for this cost?

You can tell him you expect to stick to the agreement for kid 2 but if she chooses to go away and your ex encourages it, there will be a fight. Hence my "is it worth the thousands for legal costs" if he plans to fight it.

Go through canlii and look at post secondary costs. Its all over the map but in most cases (canlii is only a selection of cases) kid is responsible for 1:3 with parents footing the rest.
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Old 01-24-2017, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Star7ontario View Post
I would like to see the case law on this. Because a person wants to do something does not just automatically equal what is their "best interest".


If you spend some time on canlii you will find the case law you are looking for. You can fight it... dad can go to court and you will be ordered to pay. As stated above... is it worth the legal fees? You will spend more in legal fees than tuition.

What does your separation agreement say about post secondary? Does it say they have the study local?


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Old 01-24-2017, 05:08 PM
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Yes, it is common in family law that if a child wants to attend university, the separated parents must help foot the bill, unlike with an intact family. It seems like your first child was successful enough to not put this difference to the test, but it is coming up for your second child.

However, the family law system also says that the child should fcover 1/3 of the bill. Can your child afford that level of contribution? If not, the whole issue can be moot, she's not going to university anywhere. If she really wants it, she can work for a year and save money. It sounds like she might benefit from that year to figure herself out, too.

That said, you could probably make an offer to the child that if she attends a local university, you would be willing to help her with her 1/3 of the cost.
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Old 01-24-2017, 05:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rioe View Post
Yes, it is common in family law that if a child wants to attend university, the separated parents must help foot the bill, unlike with an intact family. It seems like your first child was successful enough to not put this difference to the test, but it is coming up for your second child.

However, the family law system also says that the child should fcover 1/3 of the bill. Can your child afford that level of contribution? If not, the whole issue can be moot, she's not going to university anywhere. If she really wants it, she can work for a year and save money. It sounds like she might benefit from that year to figure herself out, too.

That said, you could probably make an offer to the child that if she attends a local university, you would be willing to help her with her 1/3 of the cost.


That's what I've done. But she is set on going away. She's just started saving. I guess we'll just have to have a few clauses in the agreement. I wish we could add one about drug use.


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Old 01-24-2017, 05:47 PM
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Originally Posted by rockscan View Post
Your original post made reference to how YOU helped your oldest and you are helping her with any debt. Did you seek anything from your ex for this cost?

You can tell him you expect to stick to the agreement for kid 2 but if she chooses to go away and your ex encourages it, there will be a fight. Hence my "is it worth the thousands for legal costs" if he plans to fight it.

Go through canlii and look at post secondary costs. Its all over the map but in most cases (canlii is only a selection of cases) kid is responsible for 1:3 with parents footing the rest.


No I didn't seek anything from my ex. We agreed to no further CS payments either way, we both earn the same. And I was content being done. I've helped with gas, fixing her car, books for school. I don't require any shared costs in order to help. I just do it when I can. When my eldest asks her dad, he insists I pay what he is paying or he gives her nothing. Totally different than what he does for our youngest.


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