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Permanently ending Spousal Support

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  • Permanently ending Spousal Support

    Does anyone have any experience with a "renunciation" clause for Spousal Support. What I mean is having the recipient sign off to say that after receiving a certain amount for a certain period of time, they can NEVER come back for more.

    We are being counselled to try to make this offer, but we were also counselled in the beginning that at the end of the first "end date" that it would be difficult for her to receive more and sure enough, here we are faced again with having to give more support. (short-term marriage, support has been paid for 3 years)

    I am leery that a judge wouldn't overturn such a clause, or even disallow it.

  • #2

    Its difficult to change the status quo arrangements. Most times the individual has the onus to prove a material change of circumstance has occurred before the court would hear the requested change.



    • #3
      The original agreement stated that Spousal was to end June 29th. So the onus is back on her to request more - which she has. But the lawyers say that because she has not bothered to employ herself, a judge will likely award more spousal. So it's not about changing the status quo, it's about avoiding paying indefinitely what was already supposed to have ended.


      • #4

        what is the exact wording of the spousal support clause?

        I have a tendency to think that if the separation agreement was honored in the interim that perhaps the individual may have signed away their right to further entitlement. Courts seldom interfere in legal separation agreements if the process was completed properly IE: both parties represented independently legally, full and frank financial disclosure was exchanged between the parties which contained income assets and liabilities of each and the agreement was witnessed.

        The question that does come to mind is what efforts has the individual taken to become self supporting in the last 3 years? Do they suffer from some sort of disability that prevents them from seeking employment at any occupation?

        These are all relevant questions to be asked.



        • #5
          Don't have the order in front of me, but it was essentially that spousal would be paid until June 29, 2007 and end automatically at that time. She has brought forth a motion for Emergency Measures to extend the SS - to this point she has not indicated for how long she would like to receive it so I can only suggest that she is looking for it indefinitely.

          She did nothing for 2 years and 8 months. At the time the agreement was signed, it was under the pretence that she was expecting to be employed in the fall (it was May) and even named the employer. The lawyers have made a formal written request several times over the last year requesting that she disclose what she is doing/has done to become autonomous. No answer, ever. In fact she never answers anything unless there is an associated court date in 2 days.

          She decided in Feb of this year to get her real estate license - paid in full, parking, daycare and all by the province. She is now actually employed by a real estate firm. This occurred in the late May, early June time frame.

          So she has a job, but no income. In fact, she has to PAY to be associated with the agency. She has yet to list a single house let alone sell one. She has primary residency for 2 school-aged children so her career choice baffles me slightly - a job that requires mainly evening and weekend work. And one that does not have the associated guaranteed income one would think you would need to support one's self. She worked for many years prior to the birth of the kids.

          So her argument is that she has not had enough time to become autonomous and will therefore require additional spousal.

          The reality is that he does not have it to give. It's easy to see on paper that he has been going in the red $1500 a month for the entire time he has been paying and there just isn't anymore credit to be had. I have been holding down the fort for our home, but we are at the point now where he will have to claim bankruptcy, otherwise my children will go without things which should not happen because I make a decent income and THEIR father pays CS dilligently each month. (oh so complicated)

          And STILL, his counsel says that she will likely be awarded additional spousal support because she does not have the income to support herself and therefore the children (he pays full table amounts for them plus 100% of all S7 expenses). They say that they will award it to her for now and not even care WHY she hasn't made any attempt at autonomy. The next court date after emergency measures is March of 2008, so she'll get another 9 months of spousal without ever having to say a word.

          It's VERY frustrating.

          I say if the mother can't support herself and contribute SOMETHING to her children, then give custody to Dad - but we know that is never going to happen.

          Anyway - the lawyers suggested offering her a lump sum to go away forever, but my concern, and the reason for my original post, is that even if she were to accept that, couldn't she just come back again like she is doing right now?


          • #6

            If the terms of separation agreement is not binding; What was the point of having such completed.

            Is there any clause in the agreement that states something to the effect that the agreement will survive a Divorce?

            It appears that she is now depending her stance on the defaults of the law in itself now and the agreement meant nothing.

            Generally under the Divorce Act, there is no time limit for spousal support and such survives divorce.

            If it was me, I would contest. The issue would be is the terms of the separation agreement valid? If so the individual has honored such.



            • #7
              Just to bring the thread full circle....

              At an "emergency measures" hearing she was awarded a reduced amount of SS for another 4 months and an additional 5 months at a further reduced amount. At the end of that 9 months, there is a court date scheduled at which time she can plead for more...which she never ends.

              I guess it's better than paying the full amount forever. It just seems wrong that he lives up to his end of the agreement ALL the time; she doesn't hold up her end and he pays.


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