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  • Post secondary expenses

    I am wondering what is considered to be a post secondary expense. To be more exact, is newest cell phones, big data packages and credit card bills that are mostly for take out food included in what a custodial parent can say she is paying as part of her share of the child's university expenses?
    Unfortunately, we do know that said child is actually reimbursing her for these expenses, but can't dispute her claim without having the child involved. She is showing the bills and showing that she paid the bill in her chequing account. She only shows the exact transaction each time, not a full look at the account.
    We will be heading to the settlement conference shortly so wondering what to expect the judge might say about these expenses.

  • #2
    Does the child live away at school? Then yes take out food is included in the food expenses calculated for the year. Cell phones are not normally included but it depends on a number of factors.

    Post secondary expenses are a grey area open to interpretation but for the most part the eligible expenses are tuition, books, special equipment (i.e. work boots or safety equipment, science lab equipment etc) less the tax deduction and grants from OSAP and costs to live away if they go to school outside the city (residence and meal plan or rent and food expenses).

    You may also be on the hook for transportation TO school if the child needs a metro pass or car expenses if they live outside town but live at home.

    There is also the question around incomes. Support payors who earn more than $100,000 seem to be seen as bank machines when it comes to costs but others are not. Some recipients/kids also get certain expenses covered when others do not. It all depends on what you are willing to negotiate.

    Out of curiosity, what are the other expenses you are disputing?


    • #3
      Thank you, I appreciate you responding to me. Sorry for the delay, I didn't realize I had replied to the email that said you had responded, not on the thread itself.
      Yes, he lives away during the school year. He has a bus pass for getting around.
      We aren't disputing any expenses at this point, but my husband's lawyer has asked her to show all her contributions to his education since she says she needs the full child support for the duration of his first degree and when my step daughter goes in another year, she says she is entitled to full support for them both! That explains why my husband has hired a lawyer. This has been dragging on since September. Finally, at the Case Conference the mother was ordered by the Judge to provide all the expenses for the 2017/2018 year, his contributions ie scholarships, bursaries, osap which is now part loan-part grant and his income. She was also ordered to show her contributions. She has come up with 125.00 for his cell phone each month and a total of 400 for credit card bills. We suspect because of the timing, she convinced him to get the credit card to show he still resides with her full time and that she is paying the bill. In the meantime, my husband has had to continue paying full support.
      I just wondered how her "expenses" relate to the post secondary expenses. She seems to think that by her using some of the child support, she is actually contributing to university expenses. Our lawyer has told her that both parents need to contribute to the university expenses, in accordance with their incomes, not by her saying she needs the full child support in order to pay for some expenses and that dad also needs to pay expenses based on his income on top of the full child support.


      • #4
        Depending on the income of your husband, he may have to pay a small amount the months the child is away but full table in the summer.

        Expect her to make all kind of excuses. Have you seen receipts for his living expenses and other expenses or is she just claiming the numbers?


        • #5
          Yes, that is what the lawyer has said to expect from the beginning. Actually, when my step son went to university, my husband sent the mother a nice email saying he would like to reduce his support by paying for 1.5 children for the 7 or so months he was living away since she wouldn't be feeding, doing laundry etc., but so she could maintain his residence with her and full child support for both children for the 5 or so months he would be home in the summer. My step daughter is still at home, but will be going away to University fall of 2019.
          Her reply was, "I decline to notify the FRO. The agreement says child support doesn't end until they are finished their education." that is when my husband went to a lawyer. The lawyer sent her a letter saying he didn't ask it to end, he asked for it to change, which is allowed since it is a material change in circumstance.
          She has shown the phone bill and shown each transaction in her account of only that bill being paid. We were under the understanding that when he wanted a the newest phone and a bigger data package, he would reimburse her for the added costs. She says no, that isn't what is happening she is paying his entire phone bull (cough, BS). Hopefully she delivers what she has been ordered to and shows proof that she paid it by showing her account summary.


          • #6
            The phone bill means nothing. What about the other costs? Has she put forward expenses for tuition, books, residence, food etc?

            At this point she should be providing proof of all THOSE expenses and then what his grants and loans are and how he plans to meet his share of the expense (i.e. 1/3).

            If you have a lawyer then it should be pretty simple to argue. I dont get why you are focusing on the cell phone when its peanuts compared to the rest of the expenses.


            • #7
              No, she hasn't. That is what we are waiting for so we can make an offer to settle. In the beginning she sent a few things that the son paid for like the deposit for residence, his fee for submitting his application, his room fridge, few items for his dorm room that she says she bought, and clothes, which of course are covered partly by the child support.
              She has been ordered to provide all his expenses and told that she could easily get receipts from the University for residence, meal plan, books.
              We have the list of scholarships, grants, bursaries and loans. She also has to provide expenses she paid for.
              I'm only focused on the cell phone bill because she is using that and the credit card bill to justify why she should continue to have the full support amount. She is also saying she needs it to cover his 1/3 of the rent of the apartment they are in, 1/3 of the cable, 1/3 of the internet. The judge has told her that it doesn't work that way, so we are comfortable there that he will need to pay some for the apartment, but not a 1/3. The phone and credit card bills are her only contributions (if we are to believe she isn't being reimbursed by the son). I'm wondering how much consideration will be given to them.


              • #8
                I wouldnt worry about the phone. The judge is simply giving her time to come up with the receipts and if she fails to provide them for the next conference, your lawyer should argue for an order for disclosure. The real expenses are the tuition, books and residence ones. She should be providing those right up front.

                Like I said, stop worrying about it. Saying she paid for a cell phone plan does not justify full table cs.


                • #9
                  Our lawyer sent her a letter the other day saying that although the judge didn't set a timeline, other than to say in a reasonable amount of time, it has been 5 weeks since the case conference and she ought to have had ample time by now to send provide this disclosure to his office. So, we wait....and yes, thank you, won't worry about her using the cell phone as her contribution to his expenses.


                  • #10
                    My partners ex makes double what he makes and it was triple for a couple of years. She wants cs while kid is away (in addition to a pile of other things) and claims kid canít contribute more than 1/8 the total cost. She refuses to provide proper disclosure and has been dragging her feet on the case for over a year. I can understand how stressful it is for you both but as my partners lawyer has said, you canít let it consume you otherwise you will go crazy. If she still refuses at the next cc, Im sure your lawyer will request cs stop or that the motion to stop it go forward.


                    • #11
                      We are currently waiting for our lawyer to make a proper Offer. We were furious with him when he sent the offer for my husband to review. In a nutshell, step son received $13,590 in scholarships, grants, bursaries and also 7,140 in an OSAP loan, for a total of $20,730 in funding. His tuition, residence, meal plan and books apparently came to a total of $19,480. The mother is also listing in her expenses brief, travel, entertainment , credit card amounts and her e-transfers and his entertainment money. If we took absolutely everything, except the 125/month cell phone bill, it comes to a total of approx. $26,000.
                      Here we are expecting that my husband's offer will be for the over payment of support (if it is determined that he shouldn't be paying full support while his son is living away) and that we would share the expenses 3 ways for what was not covered by "free funding" proportionately according to income. No, we were shocked for the lawyer we are paying for the last 8 months to tell us that my husbands share is $7,800 for 2017-2018 school year!! He says of course that is if we assume the child is paying 50% of the total cost of university.
                      No, we don't assume the child is doing that, we expect the free funding that he doesn't have to pay back to go towards the expenses, then whatever is left is split. How could he come up with that kind of number when the total out of pocket expenses were less than 10,000? Why would our lawyer think my husband should have to pay the entire OSAP loan plus more, meanwhile the mother and son would only have to pay from their incomes half of the remaining 485 bucks each? Is he out to lunch? My husbands income is approx. 56,000. Plus he still has his daughter to pay support for.


                      • #12
                        Thats odd. What did the lawyer consider as expenses?

                        The bursaries, grants and scholarships should come off the top with the remainder of tuition, residence and books split.

                        Were the scholarships and bursaries split over three years? For instance kid gets a $9000 scholarship but its actually $3000 per year?

                        He should be saving his loans in an account and not use that to be paid back.

                        Something is not right.


                        • #13
                          How much is your lawyer charging you to figure this all out? You may be better off self repping and doing it yourselves.


                          • #14
                            No, it sure isn't. After we replied that he must have done something wrong to get that figure and told him that dad paying 95.3% of the out of pocket expenses was unfair if it is true, the lawyer said he'd take a look at what we suggested and get back to us. We suggested adding the total of the tuition, residence, meal plan, books, reasonable travel and entertainment, take off the non repayable funding and split anything out of pocket including the loan three ways according to income.
                            He had in the case conference brief that the mother was to eimburse the father for the overpayment in child support, but now he says he isn't including that in the offer since my husbands share of the above expenses would be the 7,800.
                            If the mother has been getting Table amount of support since September and doesn't have to pay that back, why would she accept an offer? She's laughing. The child support would drop about 270 a month. If she doesn't agree to the offer it could be another 9 months to get through a settlement conference and a trial. She would keep getting full support instead of getting it reduced.
                            So, he received a 1,500 entrance bursary for that year, he received a renewable entrance scholarship of 12,000, given as 3,000 per year, he had a scholarship from high school for last year of 600. He was given 8,100 in a grant, and the OSAP loan of 7,140.
                            Katie, when we do this all over again 15 months from now when my step daughter goes to University, we will definitely self rep.


                            • #15
                              You need to take the receipts you do have for tuition, residence, meal plan and books. Subtract the grants and bursaries etc and then figure out your husbands portion. Forget the entertainment travel and other shit. The cs he paid can go to that.

                              In his offer, he can throw out say $3000 for the kids loan annually.

                              A judge is going to look at it as school expenses are a lock. Extras are a maybe and anything else is up in the air.

                              You need a more aggressive lawyer. If you think he and the ex can settle at a case conference then the offer makes little impact.


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