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Political Issues This forum is for discussing the political aspects of divorce: reform to divorce laws, men's rights, women's rights, injustices in the divorce system, etc.

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Old 04-25-2006, 12:01 PM
Peggy Peggy is offline
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Default child support payments to increase May 1

Child Support Payments to Increase May 1, 2006



First Time Since 1997 Federal Child Support Guidelines Have Been Amended
to Reflect Increased Cost of Living and Tax Rates

TORONTO, April 25 /CNW/ - Concerned that the federal government is not
doing enough to inform Canadians about the impending changes to the Federal
Child Support Guidelines, Family Lawyer Steve Benmor wants to get the word
out.
"The kids are the ones who may suffer if people are not aware of the
increase they are entitled to and therefore do nothing about it," explains
Benmor. "If, for example, the custodial parent is entitled to an additional
$200 more per month, this adds up to $2,400 per year, tax free. This could
make a tremendous difference in the life of a child."
In addition to changes in child support payment amounts, the amendments
also attempt to address the conflict surrounding what constitutes an
'extraordinary expense' and whether a spouse is entitled to receive payment.
Under the terms of the guidelines the expense must be necessary in relation to
the child's best interests and reasonable in relation to the means of the
spouses and those of the child and to the family's spending pattern before the
separation.
The change considers the expense and whether it exceeds what the spouse
can reasonably afford, taking into account her income and the amount that the
spouse would receive under the applicable table.
"The whole area of extraordinary expense has always been difficult to
argue and one that with the new language, in my opinion, is going to result in
more litigation," contends Benmor. "With the change, people will argue over
how much of the children's programs the custodial parent can cover on her
income given the table amount. The higher the income of the custodial parent,
the more difficult it will be to convince a judge that she cannot afford the
extra expenses on her income."
Anyone with a child support agreement or order in place is urged to
contact their Family Lawyer to find out more about the new guidelines and the
impact they may have on future support payments.
The guidelines can be found at
http://canadagazette.gc.ca/partII/20.../sor400-e.html
  #2  
Old 04-26-2006, 01:22 AM
logicalvelocity logicalvelocity is offline
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"Under the terms of the guidelines the expense must be necessary in relation to the child's best interests and reasonable in relation to the means of the
spouses and those of the child and to the family's spending pattern before the
separation."

an often overlooked "EXTRAORDINARY" expense of the child is access and contact travel.

If access and contact is the right of the child's, is it not logical and common sense that both parent's make a contribution to same either by assisting with the physical traveling or as an alternative make a monetary contribution to same. After all access and contact and incident's of such are determined on the child's best interest.

Gasoline and maintenance on a vehicle is expensive this day and age and costs are only going up. It can also be noted that energy costs such as gasoline are excluded from COLA and the consumer price index. If energy costs were factored into cola, you would see inflation hovering at 30% a year the last few years.

Something to think about indeed.
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Old 04-26-2006, 08:39 AM
Divorcemanagement Divorcemanagement is offline
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Count on more litigation over this one. Actually count on more litigation if the SCC rules against the four fathers in the retroactive child support case currently before the high court.

Money, money money...
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Old 04-27-2006, 12:38 AM
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Hi Divorcemanagement-

The retroactive child support case you refer to, I assume no decison has come down yet?

Do you have any further information on it? I am very curious where it is at.

Thanks,
WTI
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Old 04-27-2006, 02:33 AM
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I'm sure it will hit the front pages of the newspapers when the decision is made. I'll also try to write up a blog post at the time.
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Old 04-27-2006, 03:35 AM
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They should do an assessment every, say, 3 years; the cost of living is getting so freakin' ridiculous! Actually, it's crossed my mind at times that much should depend on the locations, too, beyond just the province, but that would only lead to NCP moving to the middle of nowhere, and CP moving to the city.
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Old 04-27-2006, 09:24 AM
Divorcemanagement Divorcemanagement is offline
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The retroactive child support decision is, in my view, going to be one of those big decisions akin to opening pandora's box. No decision has come down from the SCC yet, but it is expected some time this year from everyone I have talked to about it.

It's going to be a tough decision and frankly, if the fathers in this case lose (remember they were following the law in their cases) then it points to bad legislation from Ottawa, and maybe Ottawa might want to re-examine the issue of child support... NOT!!

Joking on the re-examining child support issue. Ain't gonna happen. It's political dynamite, hugely divisive issue and certainly not something that is a priority area for Stephen Harper.
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Old 04-28-2006, 01:02 AM
workingthruit workingthruit is offline
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Default re-examination

sure they will re-examine Sean ... and re-evalute the amounts that were too high to begin with, to increase them ... make the recipient happy, that's what family law is about.

sorry, that was bitter.

I am trying to stay off the bitter train.


CS isn't fair, but it pleases women's groups. Women's groups support politicians, that keeps them in office. Don't bite the hand that feeds, I suppose.

The new ammendments make me very sad - the whole system makes me sad - and I will fight to change in my small way, everyday.
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Old 04-28-2006, 04:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by workingthruit
CS isn't fair, but it pleases women's groups.
How can you say that? I don't understand your thinking on this one? I personally think forcing parents to pay for post-secondary education for kids over the age of majority is unfair, but the amounts? Not accounting for the differences of location between you and I, but if anything, I would say child support amounts are LOW. I would bet that if everyone added up the ACTUAL costs of raising their kids and compared it to the guideline amount set out for their income bracket, we'd find most parents (at least, those with an 'average' combined income) are spending more than the guidelines would indicate will cover a child's needs.
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Old 04-28-2006, 08:45 AM
Divorcemanagement Divorcemanagement is offline
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Okay okay, let's slow down for a second here folks.

Regardless of what political or social movement may have driven the development in the Child Support Guidelines in the mid-90's, the point is that they are here and they exist and we have to deal with them. It should also be noted that one of the primary driving forces behind the guidelines in the first place was the fact that government want a cookie cutter approach to dealing with child support - so that everyone was getting roughly the same amount depending on the income of the payer. Before the guidelines, child support was all over the place. So it was an attempt to simplify the process and *theoretically* reduce litigation.

Well, it's ten years later and support awards have been standaradized but the litigation has increased - not necessarily on the table amounts, but on the section 7 expenses and lately, with litigation on child support for adult children. (Which personally I believe is a load of rubbish because there is no similar legislative requirement for married families to support adult children, but I digress.)

The government also made a pile of money from the tax changes to child support when the guideline was implemented in 1997.

Are we better off because of the guidelines? Beats me. The 40 percent rule created an automatic framework for both parents to try and "beat" the guidelines - do you know how many Court Orders I have seen over the years where dad has the kids for 39% of the calendar year? Lots!

So the SCC in it's wisdom eliminated the 40% rule last fall (on a case by case basis if I am not mistaken) and it will be interesting to see if that decision is going to force parents to drop their collective agendas of increasing or decreasing time with the kids to avoid or collect child support.
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