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  Ottawa Divorce .com Forums > Main Category > Divorce Support

Divorce Support This forum is for discussing the emotional aspects of divorce: stress, anger, betrayal of trust and more.

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Old 09-28-2012, 12:35 AM
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Default Totally confused - there is no law

I was separated in early 2008. I raised the three children myself. I received nothing for child support or for section 7 costs - hockey, football and university costs

It is now sept 2012 and I still have received no child support. The two older boys are now 20 and 22. Youngest is 14 living with me.

I have spent over 70,000 on legal costs. Most of it for matrimonial property mediation which was a blood bath and a great means for lawyers to generate income. I am on my third lawyer and still no application for child support.

The arbitrator was completely biased. Forced sale of the home with one week to list. Ordered me to pay 100% house costs until sold. Refused to hear my disclosures of costs. Ignored an agreement between both parties.

The spouse had drained the joint accounts putting down payment on condo.

Forced to the street, while spouse lived in a 200k condo. Spouses Parents worth more than 1000k.

Spouse got technical degree and engineering degree during marriage and earns more than 100k. Has 8.5 years more earning potential.

Forced by mediator to sign the agreement other it would be arbitrated. There were threats of spousal support. Spouse wanted 2k per month for life. Also wanted 300k above the total matrimonial property. Also didn't want to pay child support.

Arbitrator assured that waving child support for a period of time was the only way to settle. Spouse brought two lawyers to mediation, the arbitrator and my lawyer - imagine the cost at a 4 hour meeting. I was also reassured that waving child support would not be enforceable.

I reluctantly signed thinking this would be it. Spouse got the vehicles and fought for the pots and pans. Spouse got even more from arbitrator so signature on document wasn't final.

Basically, I got less than 10% of the matrimonial home. Spouse got condo and paid next to nothing for costs for the matrimonial home and nothing for the children. Lost third of pensions. Spouse got 50% of any monies earned after separation - sorry this Alberta.

I got transferd to us. Youngest son wants to be with me. My lawyer didn't meet court order deadline. Had to go back to court to force the rights of my 13 yo. My son had to attend counselling with final report to be used by court. Spouses lawyer instructed to delay so child would be enrolled in Calgary school killing my chances and sons wishes. Spouse was to attend one session with child. Court order deadline and spouse had to comply or decision made without spouse visit with counsellor.

Counsellor report delivered to court. Child was mature and clearly knew what he wanted and that was to be with me.

Other side has report and wants to settle only if child returns to Calgary for all canada and us holidays. No child support. Unbelievable.

Goes to the judge for the decision who says it should not have gone to court. The child's wishes were clear from the start. I get a court allowing child to move to US.

In the meantime, court order is granted for matrimonial property. Spouse still owes me 2500 from a lease vehicle which is in a court order. Agreement between lawyers that spouse would submit divorce application to finalize.

It as been two months since I was to receive the money, but spouse doesn't agree anymore. Spouse refuses to pay child support. My lawyer doesn't respond to my demands to seek back child support. Spouse wants money for divorce decree.

Have hired a us lawyer to get child support. Spouse is seeking child support in alberta for the 20 and 22 year old. I have to disclose all my financials. Why? The 20 year old is working not in school. Has more than 15k in bank account. 22 year old has full scholarship for all costs of university. In 4th year of university. Changed faculty and has 2 more years. Has more than 5k in bank account and was working until recently. Both have RESP accounts built during marriage.

Both adult children each pay my spouse 500 per month for rent. That's 1000 per month.

I am sure you guessed it, but I am a father. This is so incredible, you just want to cry.

I make more than the mother, but not a huge amount. Compute the NPV from retirement and she is significantly better off financially.

How can the courts even entertain this child support motion? Is family law the lawyer cash cow?

I have contacted MLA and minister of justice - no luck. You can't cover your ears, mouth and eyes and ignore everything pushing you back into the system that is not working.

Most likely, a us judge will consider the best interests of an Alberta born Canadian citizen. The government of canada should be ashamed that it allows the legal system to play with peoples lives and even cost lives from what I have read. God rest their soles.

Advice appreciated. I would like to make this public so people of canada can see what is happening. I encourage others to publish. If anyone has contacts in media, would be greatly appreciated.

The sweet spot - I have my youngest boy with me. He attends an excellent school and his marks have improved 1.5 letter grades from Calgary. He is so close to an A. He has made the high hockey team as a freshman. He is playing on the local team. He has made many friends. I am so proud of him.

All the boys want is this to end. Why did the court of Alberta even consider child support for the adults? Why is the mother allowed to ignore her responsibilities? How can her lawyer support this?

I ask the governments of canada, is this in the children's best interest or it is really true that it is only for the wife, mother, woman. That's who's interests are protected - not the children's. Please re write the law to reflect this. It's not 50/50 and it is not common sense either.

Perhaps men should start a class action against the government for failure to protect men as fathers in the charter of rights. Nobody stands up to fight and I can see why. You are so exhausted and drained. Incredible.

My rant.
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Old 09-28-2012, 12:41 AM
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Wow - I will definitely have to read your post several times to take it all in.

I really don't have anything to say right now except - welcome to the forum. Hope you can get some useful advise from us. I, for one, am a hard ass and you may not like what I have to say (just look at my post history) - I have been called a gin totter, bitter ex wife and all sorts of things. Hope I can give you my 2 cents worth which will help.

I like your straight forward way of stating the facts as you see it. So far so good.
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Old 09-28-2012, 08:04 AM
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The kid who is not attending school you certainly wont be paying support for!The one on full scholarship with resp...unlikely too.While you are untitled to CS please don't make the mistake of thinking that it is going to come your way.Sometimes it takes years and sometimes exes quit jobs to avoid ever paying at all.It sounds like your ex is out for vengeance.Don't expect logic or common sense, it seems like she is more than willing to beggar herself to destroy you.Read through this forum.Do not engage in emotional thinking.(its hard I know).Now tot up her financials -what she has gotten in the split ,pension ,wages etc and add up yours .She has no dependants to pay for financially and you do.Look at this critically as a normal judge would.By now you should be feeling a little less stressed!
Ps lawyers work for money ,they care nothing about the morals of their client -they only care that they can be paid.Ever read Bleak House by Charles Dickens ?The lawsuit Jarndyce and Jarndyce becomes a reality for some of the unlucky ones.
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Old 09-28-2012, 09:20 AM
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The decision didn't go through the courts, it was a private settlement so how are complaining that "there is no law?"

You cannot be forced to sign a contract, such a contract would be illegal.

I take it you previously had signed a contract agreeing to med-arb. You were the one who locked yourself into this scenario.

Arbitrators in Ontario are bound to follow the FLA and may not make an equalization award that violates the FLA; assests accumulated during marriage must be split equally. However you didn't go to arbitration it seems, you settled with a mediated agreement.

There is no reason you should have spent $70k on lawyers to NOT settle marital property. You should have spent 10% of that on accountants if your property was that complicated.
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Old 09-28-2012, 09:27 AM
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Mediators will lean on those they feel are more likely to fold. Looks like you were that person.

It is unfortunate, but you took the mediators advice as gospel and signed a bad agreement. I sucks, but the buck should stop with you when it comes to responsibility.

Going forward, ensure that your ducks are in a row. You have sound legal advice and a support team that is there for you.
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Old 09-28-2012, 09:42 AM
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Welcome to the forum.

Without any offense to women, yes family court system is biased against men. My ex quit her job after separation and then filed for increased SS. I had to give it to her to save lawyers bills. Same issues with equalization payment. She almost got everything and I got legal bills. I get no CS either. However, I have to say that my ex was not that nasty as I originally thought, now when I think of her after 5 years of separation.

It eventually goes away when you focus on moving on with your life. The ex will try hard to keep you chained but in the end, its all up to you how you let her control you.

Even though I lost everything financially, I am much happier today than I would have been if I had stayed with my ex.

Good luck and hope things work out for you eventually.
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Old 09-28-2012, 09:49 AM
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One of my favourite sayings: In Canada you can have as much Justice as you can afford.

Sounds like you got a bad deal for your 70k in legal expenses. I don't understand the reluctance to proceed in court and instead deal with mediators when you've spent so much. If the divorce has been ongoing for this long, you have had time to learn about family law, case law and the court system on your own rather than taking verbatim everything lawyers or mediators tell you. You needed to take control of your own case, use your lawyer, not allow the lawyers to use you.

You can't normally get retro child support prior to the date of your court application for child support. If you had really wanted/needed it you have to apply right away if it's not forthcoming voluntarily. As you have pointed out, your children are almost no longer children of the marriage.

It sounds like you're one of the few men who raised your kids and the bias of the system was set against you in getting support. It's a bias but it can be overcome with relevant, cogent evidence and by focusing on the children.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:06 AM
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You got hosed, but it sounds like you did it to yourself.

The older two are no longer children of the marriage, both are past age of majority and their schooling is covered by RESPs generated.

The younger one you should get CS for and should have all along. CS may be offset by the cost of travel given you were the one to move and the ex objected.

However that should have been dealt with at the time of the move. Lesson learned...control your lawyer. They work FOR you. You let them run roughshod over you instead of putting your foot down.

If your lawyer was unwilling to pursue CS/etc then you should have gotten a new lawyer. You learned an expensive lesson, hopefully you avoid repeating the same mistakes.

The mediator cannot force you to sign anything. If you went to binding arbitration, they cannot force you to sign a legally unenforcable agreement.

(The no CS thing is not legally enforceable, since it's the right of the child). There are certain scenarios (ie. parents make close to the same amount/etc) where this is technically the case, but CS zeros itself out at that point, it's not that you aren't paying, it's just that the amounts cancel each other out closely enough that the pocket change left over isn't worth it.
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