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Old 07-14-2011, 09:51 PM
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I have a question about drivers education classes as a section 7 expense.
My partner recently got an email about upcoming "extraordinary" expense for his daughter (who he never sees as a result of the ex - he keeps trying to see his kids) this email included the cost of a drivers licence test (about 100) and drivers ed (about 1000). The test (I think is part of his almost 800/month c/s) but is driver training a valid section 7? he has to pay about 70% of section 7's and we are beginning to feel like they are using him (and I) as a bank machine. The kids never see him or respond to any attempts at communication. They have even begun to ignore his mom and her attempts at staying involved in their lives. His agreement states that both parties must agree in writing before an expense is to be shared. Can he just deny this expense? his ex makes about 20k/yr he make 45k.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:02 AM
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Here is a link for extraordinary expenses in ontario.

Hopefully this will give a a bit more information about Section 7 expenses.

You should read the agreement tho because if it states you need receipts or prior approval before the expense occurs the agreement should be followed.

Family Law Act - O. Reg. 391/97

However, its dispicable that his ex isnt encouraging a relationship with their dad, after all he too is paying for their extraordinary expenses. The children shouldnt go without because of the mother's childish games.

Some parents need to grow up and not use children as pawns in their divorce. It only hurts children when they are used as pawns and dont have both parents in their life.

Family law needs to be reformed and both parents should be part of the children's lives. Parents that dont encourage a relationship are not looking out for the children's best interest.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:34 AM
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Maybe indicate that he'd be happier about contributing to their driver's ed if he was the one who got to take them out for practice driving?
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:45 PM
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Driver's training can actually be a good investment in the long run. It tends to decrease the cost of insurance initially, as well as in certain provinces decrease the time involved in the graduated licensing programs.

Really a tough call. On the one hand, you want to give the kids every opportunity, on the other, you need to slap a leash on the ex and make it clear she needs to keep him involved.

Maybe you could make some sort of payment arrangement with her...$50 a month or something stupidly small....just to be able to say you are paying against it, and respond to the ex along the lines of "Because I was not informed ahead of time per the court order, paying this at one shot is not an option. However because I do agree it's a good investment in $child's future, I am willing to work with you to help fund this in part. "
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:55 PM
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Thanks for the link - the wording of the act is pretty vague when it comes to these things. If it was a allowable expense it exceeds her income but what if it also exceeds his? When you crunch the numbers his net after c/s is only about $1300/month. So an expense like that would need some definite thought as to if he could afford it. He would be more than willing to consider covering part of it if he saw his kids more and if his daughter got a job to help with the cost as well. We are fortunate in that we both work and make decent money but a $700 one time expense for something like that is a bit much for us. Especially since she wants the cash and not for him to pay the provider of the expense.
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Old 09-03-2011, 02:58 PM
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Rylie’s driver education

[45] Ms. Turple arranged for Rylie to take driving lessons from the Dartmouth Driving School in April and May 2010. This cost $500.00. There was an additional expense of $46.85 for Rylie to take the test to upgrade her driver’s license from a learner’s license to a class 5 license.

[46] On her Statement of Special or Extraordinary Expenses, Ms. Turple claims this expense is an extra-curricular activity.

[47] Driver education is, I find, an extra-curricular activity. It falls outside the scope of a child’s typical education or regular activities.

[48] In November 2005 amendments (SOR/2005-400) were made to the Federal Child Support Guidelines. These came into force in May 2006. These amendments added section 7(1.1) to the Guidelines. Section 7(1.1) defines “extraordinary expenses”. As I explained in paragraph 30, section 7(1.1) dictates two approaches to determining whether an educational or extra-curricular activity is extraordinary.

[49] Rylie’s driver education cost $546.85. When this cost was incurred, Ms. Turple’s income was $28,121.62 and she was receiving child support payments of approximately $200.00 each month pursuant to section 8 of the Guidelines. The expense was less than two percent of her total income. On this basis, the expense is not extraordinary.

[50] Since the expense is not extraordinary in the context of section 7(1.1)(a) of the Guidelines, I must analyse the expense with regard to sections 7(1.1)(ii) to (v), summarized below:

(i) the relationship of the expense to the parent’s income and child support;

(ii) the nature and number of the child’s educational programs and extracurricular activities;

(iii) any special needs and talents of the child;

(iv) the overall cost of the programs and activities; and

(v) any other similar factor that I consider relevant.

[51] I have considered the relationship of the driver training expense to Ms. Turple’s income and her child support in paragraph 49 and noted this expense is less than two percent of Ms. Turple’s income (including her child support). I note that section 7(1.1)(a) of the Guidelines and section 7(1.1)(b)(i) both tell me to consider this issue.

[52] I have no evidence that Rylie had any other educational programs or extra-curricular activities. None were mentioned in either parent’s testimony and none was disclosed on Ms. Turple’s Statement of Special or Extraordinary Expenses.

[53] Neither parent offered me any evidence that Rylie has any special need or talent.

[54] I understand that because driver training was Rylie’s only activity or educational program $546.85 is the total cost of such programs.

[55] Finally, I have considered Mr. Turple’s evidence that, neither Jordan nor Mr. Turple’s step-children had participated in such a program. Mr. Turple says the expense wasn’t necessary. Mr. Turple says he was asked about splitting the cost of Rylie’s driver education, but he was not asked about whether she should have the training. He says that when Ms. Turple asked him about driver education, he said he couldn’t afford the cost. It is his evidence that the expense wasn’t necessary or reasonable. I agree that the expense wasn’t necessary.

[58] Driving training is not an extraordinary extra-curricular activity by virtue of its cost, either parent’s income or a special need or talent that Rylie has. I conclude this is not an extraordinary expense so it will not be shared between the parents.


CanLII - 2011 NSSC 150 (CanLII)
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Old 09-03-2011, 06:23 PM
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BAM!

see above
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Old 09-04-2011, 05:14 PM
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[9] I find that the following expenses, which total $1,609.74 do not qualify: (a) dance performance costumes, $274.25; (b) Grade 8 School Trip, $310.93; (c) Gymnastics Ontario – Level 1 Certification, $96.64; (d) registered message, $95.90; and (e) Young Drivers of Canada, $832.02.

CanLII - 2007 CanLII 28755 (ON SC)
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Old 09-05-2011, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by first timer View Post
[9] I find that the following expenses, which total $1,609.74 do not qualify: (a) dance performance costumes, $274.25; (b) Grade 8 School Trip, $310.93; (c) Gymnastics Ontario – Level 1 Certification, $96.64; (d) registered message, $95.90; and (e) Young Drivers of Canada, $832.02.

CanLII - 2007 CanLII 28755 (ON SC)
Wow. Great stuff. I think you have your answer.
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Old 09-06-2011, 02:14 PM
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To the OP.... be careful not to get your hopes up with these little snippits from canlii. Each case has subtleties that can make a big difference.

I have been doing a lot of research about section 7 right now too. A lot will depend on the income of both parties. The higher both incomes are, the more likely you will see things like driver's ed and school trips included with section 7.

Section 7 expenses are highly subjective, and a lot will depend on how well the issue is argued. The rest will rely on the judge. I have read some cases that seem fair and reasonable. Others blow my mind as to the injustice.

I am a long way off from driver's ed being an issue yet. Private school is being shoved down my throat right now. Not to hijack your thread, I will post another about that when I have some time...

But carefully read your case law, and try to find cases that are very similar to yours if possible. I have read numerous decisions where judges basically ignore the case law people cite due to quotes like some of the above being taken out of context of the entire case.
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