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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 03-03-2009, 10:09 AM
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Default Self-Deemed Extraordinary Expenses - Ha!

We got a letter from the opposing lawyer the other day asking that my fiancé provide at least 50% payment for expenses that are not listed in Section 7. The lawyer and my stepson's mom have deemed them extraordinary expenses because they do not feel that my fiancé is paying enough in child support, based on an imputed income of $28,000 despite having an income of less than $20,000 on EI, and therefore those expenses "cannot reasonably be covered by child support."

WTF?!

They are planning on withholding documents/materials until we provide the payments for them. Thankfully, we do not need those documents/materials at this time, but we'd like unrestricted access to them in the future. Can they really (and legally) play such childish games?

Oh, and the kicker... the judge at our last conference recommended (though unfortunately did not put it in writing as she thought it was common sense) that the child's documents travel with him during access/vacation visits, without any financial demands in order to receive access to such documents.
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Old 03-03-2009, 10:22 AM
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Maybe I'm being overly optimistic here, but shouldn't a lawyer know better? Section 7 expenses are an exhaustive list. If its not on the list, its not a section 7. Period. I wouldn't bow to any demands in this regard. First, your supposed to pay section 7 pro rata (in proportion), so the 50% is likely incorrect. The onus would be on mom and the lawyer to prove these expenses are section 7 (in the first place) and then that they are in the child's best interests and reasonable given the incomes of the parents. If they have stated that they know these are not section 7 they've pretty much stepped in it. I would put a request in writing/email stating that you need access to the documents being witheld and that it is in your child's best interest that you have this access. Keep child focused. Out of curiosity, what are the "expenses" that are being claimed?
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Old 03-03-2009, 11:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamkatie View Post
Out of curiosity, what are the "expenses" that are being claimed?
Same ones as before... birth certificate, health card, passport... the bio-mom claims that my fiancé shouldn't have access to these documents because he did not help pay to have them made. *Roll eyes* She plans to withhold them from him until he provides her at least one-half of the expenses associated with them (i.e. birth certificate application cost from 7 years ago, passport application fee and photo costs, etc.) Luckily, we don't plan on taking the child on any vacations outside the country in the near future.
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Old 03-03-2009, 11:45 AM
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That's ridiculous. First, health card you don't have to pay for. Second, a birth certificate typically runs about $25 to order the first time. I would think that would be reasonably covered under support and certainly does not fall under a section 7 expense. The passport is a little more iffy. If the child was required to have a passport in order for you and hubby to exercise access then maybe she might have a claim that you should contribute towards the cost. Why does she/he? have the passport in the first place? If it was for a trip with mom then I would say she's out of luck. If you and dad were taking a trip with the child that required them to have a passport then it is reasonable to assume you would pay for those costs associated with acquiring one. Her witholding the health card is a serious issue. Should something happen when the child is in your care you need that!
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Old 03-03-2009, 12:06 PM
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I agree with the health card and birth certificate. As for the passport, she has obtained one for the child to take him out of the country over March Break. Thus, she is the one who is paying to have the passport issued. However, she has made it very clear, both in her email and through her lawyer, that if WE ever wish to use the passport she obtained, we would first have to pay her 50% of the cost of the application AND photos.

Needless to say, the judge recommended (though unforunately not in writing) that she provide us with the passport at our request without making any financial demands of us. But of course, that fell on death ears - as is always the case when she is told that she can't squeeze every single penny from us.
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Old 03-03-2009, 01:36 PM
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It sounds like you are certainly entitled to have use of the passport. However, unless you take it to court I can't see how you would enforce this. Unfortunately it's probably cheaper to contribute towards the cost then to enforce the judge's verbal decision. From now on if I were you I would make sure all court proceedings are completely documented. I know, a little late now right? Yeesh. Again, try reminding her about the judge's decision. If she's using the same lawyer then this person should recall the decision (I would hope). Not sure how that works if a lawyer knowingly assists someone in violating a court order...
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Old 03-03-2009, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamkatie View Post
It sounds like you are certainly entitled to have use of the passport. However, unless you take it to court I can't see how you would enforce this. Unfortunately it's probably cheaper to contribute towards the cost then to enforce the judge's verbal decision. From now on if I were you I would make sure all court proceedings are completely documented. I know, a little late now right? Yeesh. Again, try reminding her about the judge's decision. If she's using the same lawyer then this person should recall the decision (I would hope). Not sure how that works if a lawyer knowingly assists someone in violating a court order...
Oh, we did remind both her and her lawyer of the judge's words, especially since the lawyer used the judge's words against us in his letter, words that too were not documented. So, if he expects us to abide by those, why can't he expect his client to abide by the judge's words as well? Funny how thing are relevent only when they are in their favour, huh?
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Old 03-05-2009, 07:59 AM
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Is it possible that although not in the order that the judge put into writing her recommendations in the "judges notes". Sometimes a judge writes notes on the case as it progresses, and theses are available to the parties involved. We requested copies of judges notes/recommendations when there was an issue about meaning in a court order, they were difficult to read, (bad hand writing), but very helpful. Call the court house and see if there are any judge’s notes or anything the judge may have written in regards to your case for the date in question.
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Old 03-05-2009, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FL_Needs_To_Change View Post
Is it possible that although not in the order that the judge put into writing her recommendations in the "judges notes". Sometimes a judge writes notes on the case as it progresses, and theses are available to the parties involved. We requested copies of judges notes/recommendations when there was an issue about meaning in a court order, they were difficult to read, (bad hand writing), but very helpful. Call the court house and see if there are any judge’s notes or anything the judge may have written in regards to your case for the date in question.
Been there, tried that... the only thing the courthouse says they have on file is the judge's endorsement, of which we already have a copy. Any other recommendations (verbal) are not in the files. :-(
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Old 03-05-2009, 12:57 PM
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I know how hard it is to scrap together enough money for basic things, much less trying to get things you are legally entitled to without cost, but as mentioned it may well be worth the reduced stress to just pay the 50% to gain copies of the documents.

Here are the costs,
Short Form – First time applying for Birth Certificate – 15 business days (includes mailing time) - $72.25 (includes all taxes and shipping costs)

Long Form – First time applying for Certified Copy – 15 business days (includes mailing time) - $82.25 (includes all taxes and shipping costs)

And ZERO cost to get a health card in Ontario.

I'm guessing the costs for the passport or a non issue as you cannot afford at this time to go farther then the local park, (welcome to my world).

So bottom line, is $36.13 worth the reduced stress?
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