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Financial Issues This forum is for discussing any of the financial issues involved in your divorce.

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  #1  
Old 12-02-2014, 04:17 PM
Canadaguy Canadaguy is offline
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Default Income Decreased

Finally got my ex's tax papers last month (yeah, better late than never!) and noticed that she switched jobs and now makes about $10k less at her new career choice. It was voluntary switch.

Am I off base by saying her CS is based on her previous earnings and inputting an income to her for CS?

We have shared 50/50 custody with offset CS, me being the payor (higher income).

Would be nice if anyone could point me to some case law where someone switched jobs and made less but was forced income imputed to them.

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 12-02-2014, 04:33 PM
OntarioMomma OntarioMomma is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadaguy View Post
Finally got my ex's tax papers last month (yeah, better late than never!) and noticed that she switched jobs and now makes about $10k less at her new career choice. It was voluntary switch.

Am I off base by saying her CS is based on her previous earnings and inputting an income to her for CS?

We have shared 50/50 custody with offset CS, me being the payor (higher income).

Would be nice if anyone could point me to some case law where someone switched jobs and made less but was forced income imputed to them.

Thanks.
I haven't read any case law on that, but I think you're reasonable in your assumption that the offset should be based on what she was making, and is capable of making.

Did you run the numbers? What is the actual difference monthly?
If it's a small amount, may not even be worth addressing.
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Old 12-02-2014, 04:38 PM
DowntroddenDad DowntroddenDad is offline
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It may hinge on why she changed jobs.

If her old job ended and was no longer available, and the newer job was in the same field and paid less, then she may have a case.

If she voluntarily left the position for a lower paying one in a different field, then she should have the old income imputed.
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Old 12-02-2014, 04:48 PM
stripes stripes is offline
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CS should be based on her most recent Line 150. But before you think about going after her for the difference between what she made in 2012 and what she made in 2013, consider whether this is worth the time and effort or whether you should just pay the offset based on her most recent tax form going forward. How much difference would $10K make in your payments? This depends on your income and hers:

Scenario A: You earn $80K per year; she went from earning $30K to $20K

Scenario B: You earn $150 per year; she went from earning $110 to $100K.

In the first case, it makes a big difference; in the second case probably not worth your time to pursue. My understanding is that imputing an income is only really worth it when someone is very clearly underemployed - working far below what they could work. People are allowed to switch jobs and to have their income fluctuate.
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Old 12-02-2014, 07:27 PM
Canadaguy Canadaguy is offline
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She left her job for a different one in a different field for less money because she wanted too. Her previous job was government with good pension and crazy pay for what she did.

The pay difference is more like Stripes example #1, so it is worth fighting for me.

I pay by cheque, so if she disagrees by having me input her income she has to take me to mediation according to our agreement and has to pay for mediation which will cost more than it's worth. So really it is up too me what I decide to do.

Going to have to do some research so that if I do go to mediation I have case law on my side that input income is the right thing to do.
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Old 12-02-2014, 08:39 PM
standing on the sidelines standing on the sidelines is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadaguy View Post
She left her job for a different one in a different field for less money because she wanted too. Her previous job was government with good pension and crazy pay for what she did.

The pay difference is more like Stripes example #1, so it is worth fighting for me.

I pay by cheque, so if she disagrees by having me input her income she has to take me to mediation according to our agreement and has to pay for mediation which will cost more than it's worth. So really it is up too me what I decide to do.

Going to have to do some research so that if I do go to mediation I have case law on my side that input income is the right thing to do.
I don't think you can imput her income yourself, I think a judge has to do that.
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Old 12-03-2014, 11:27 PM
Canadaguy Canadaguy is offline
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Originally Posted by standing on the sidelines View Post
I don't think you can imput her income yourself, I think a judge has to do that.
Yes, true but we have to agree on the change in support. And if we don't we can either keep it the same or change it to whatever we feel like.

Then the other party has to determine if it is worth taking to court. If I have case law backing me up, then why would she fight a potential losing cause that will cost more than it's worth when a judge would just do the same as me.

I write the cheques so I have some leverage on what I decide to pay.
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Old 12-03-2014, 11:49 PM
Links17 Links17 is offline
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I would just not modify the child support and keep paying the same amount and let her start the conflict.
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Old 12-03-2014, 11:58 PM
stripes stripes is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadaguy View Post
I write the cheques so I have some leverage on what I decide to pay.

No, you pay what the law and your agreement says you pay until you have a legal piece of paper saying otherwise. You don't get to just decide that your ex should be imputed (not "inputted") some arbitrary amount of income and then pay what you want to pay. You are not a judge. You use the most recent income information available; if you think this does not reflect her true earning power, take it to mediation or to court. If you deliberately underpay your child support obligations because you don't feel like following the law, it will not look good on you.

Think about it this way: maybe YOU should be imputed a higher income. You could probably make more money than you currently do, if you really tried. What would you think if your ex said "I'd like to 'input' your income at $200 000 because I believe you could earn that much money if you really tried. So starting next month, you owe me an additional $500"? Ridiculous, right?
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Old 12-04-2014, 07:04 AM
Berner_Faith Berner_Faith is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadaguy View Post
Yes, true but we have to agree on the change in support. And if we don't we can either keep it the same or change it to whatever we feel like.

Then the other party has to determine if it is worth taking to court. If I have case law backing me up, then why would she fight a potential losing cause that will cost more than it's worth when a judge would just do the same as me.

I write the cheques so I have some leverage on what I decide to pay.

You have it alll wrong. If you want to lower your support obligations you must get a new order. I am sure your order or agreement does not say 'the parties must agree on new cs amounts and if they don't one party gets to arbitrarily decide what's owed'

You pay based on line 150, if you feel she should be making more you have to be the one to initiate mediation or court to have her income imputed. There are many cases to back up the fact that changing jobs for reduced income is actually in the best interest of the children so your case law you have backing you up may be worthless to you.
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