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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 11-14-2016, 11:14 PM
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Default s.7 expenses and ex's new spouses income - clarification

Can anyone forum members tell me if they have heard of any cases where the enclosed case law below was referenced and used.

My specific question is as follows. If my current order has me paying a proportionate amount for s.7 expenses at 80% to 20% and my ex is now common-law with a person who makes $140,000 does his income come into play as specified in the following to citations.

My ex is taking me to court for s.7 related expenses and one of the items is vehicle expense for my daughter but she also asked to have her proportionate share reduced to 10% as part of the motion as she has not been working for the last 3 years. (During that time she had a child with her new common law spouse and took herself out of the workforce).

My understanding of the citations would be that her spouses income must be considered when determining s.7 expenses. If that is correct than the cost sharing should be at least 50/50 instead of the current 80/20 and certainly not 90/10 particularly since she took herself out of the workforce to have a child with him (I believe they would just input income because of that)

Can anyone provide any comments on this...
Thanks





Citation - S.H.A. v. W.D.A., 2002 BCSC 725 (CanLII)

[77] Although “the guiding principle” in s. 7(2) contemplates the parties sharing expenses in relation to their income, it is clear that any attempt to accurately and fairly impute income to either Mr. A. or Mrs. A. is fraught with difficulty. The language of s. 7(1) is broader in its scope, assessing the reasonableness of the expenses in relation to the means of the parties, rather than their income. Madam Justice Martinson considered this issue in Baum v. Baum (2000), 2000 BCSC 1835 (CanLII), 13 R.F.L. (5th) 258; 2000 BCSC 1835 and concluded that income from the mother’s new husband should be included in determining her “means” to pay expenses. Martinson J. stated, at paras. 9 and 10:
Section 7(1) of the Guidelines … requires the court to consider the means of the parties, not just their income. The word “means” should be interpreted broadly to include not just the income of the spouse, but other sources of revenue available to that spouse. The court can look at the economic wellbeing of the spouses and this includes a consideration of family income.
Section 7(2) does say that a guiding principle is that the expense is shared by the spouses in proportion to their respective incomes after deducting from the expense, the contribution, if any, from the child. However, the mandatory provisions of s. 7(1) must prevail when there is a conflict.


Citation - Baum v. Baum, 2000 BCSC 1835 (CanLII)
[9] Section 7(1) of the Guidelines does however give the court a discretion. It requires the court to consider the means of the parties, not just their income. The word “means” should be interpreted broadly to include not just the income of the spouse, but other sources of revenue available to that spouse. The court can look at the economic wellbeing of the spouses and this includes a consideration of family income.

[10] Section 7(2) does say that a guiding principle is that the expense is shared by the spouses in proportion to their respective incomes after deducting from the expense, the contribution, if any, from the child. However, the mandatory provisions of s. 7(1) must prevail when there is a conflict.

[11] In this case it is appropriate to consider Ms. Baum's family income in assessing her “means”. I conclude that, taking into account the additional means that are available to her, it is appropriate to determine the s. 7 expenses in the manner provided for by Master Joyce in his recommendations. I therefore approve his recommendations.
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