Ottawa Divorce .com Forums


User CP

New posts

Advertising

  Ottawa Divorce .com Forums > Main Category > Financial Issues

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

Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 01-26-2009, 01:18 PM
Chopper Chopper is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 65
Chopper is on a distinguished road
Default Help! Job Loss CS/ s7's/ Extra Expences and Costs

Hi Guys, here it goes...
I'm self represented and ex has a lawyer.

Court order of July 2008 has me at an income level of $70000 per year for CS and S7 expences.

Dec 2007 I lost my job

Jan 2008 I sent ex's laywer a letter with proof I was laid off seperation papers and requested that CS needs to be reduced.

Feb 2008 ex's lawyer sends me a letter suggesting the prepare orders to that effect. After recieving this letter I took it to the family law office and the lawyer told me that considering the ex's lawyer is the only lawyer on record it should be them that draft the order. The lawyer also told me that I should wait and address this at exit pre-trial on March 4 2008....so I did.

March 4 2008 I brought all supporting documentation and also filed this documentation with my exit pretrial papers.
During the exit pretrial ex's lawyer provided the judge with a draft order.
On the spot I realized it had mistakes and ex's lawyer left out mobility clauses ect...I wasn't about to agree to it. The judge left it up to the ex's lawyer to fix the mistakes and then file the order based on his endorsement. Judge made no decision on the CS and issused on the endorcement that CS could be addressed by way of consent 14B. The ex's lawyer did not file the March 4, 2008 orders with the changes until May 27, 2008, I received confirmation of this and a copy of the signed orders from the ex's lawyer on June 16, 2008.

Between March 4 2008 and May 27 2008 I went to the court clerks office 6 times to get a copy of the orders so I could bring about these changes via 14B, however everytime I went the clerks would look at the continuing record and show me a copy of the incorrect draft order the ex's lawyer presented in court on March 4, the clerks told me every time that it's not signed as they are waiting on the ex's lawyer to correct the order and have it signed. A note on the top of the file indicated that they spoke with the ex's lawyers office 3 times requesting that the updated orders be filed so they can be signed.

May 2008 I received a letter from the FRO indicating that I am not paying the full amount of CS. At this time I was being garnished 50% of my Employment Insurance. The letter said that I had 30 days to address them in one of 3 ways or they would suspend my drivers licence.

a) Have the CS adjusted by way of consent
b) File a montion to change
c) Pay the arrears in full

Speaking with the court clerks office they told me that I could make any changes by way of 14B as the orders from March 4 have not been updated and signed.
I didn't have the money to pay in full therefore I was left with no choice but to file a motion so my licence was not suspended.
Court date was set for Nov 2008.

From Jun 2008 until Oct 2008 I worked for a company at 50% of my previous income. $40000 per year. This income was garnished at 50%. Things did not work out with this company and I became unemployed again.

Nov 14 was my court date for the motion.
Being self represented was a terrible thing to do however I don't have the money for a lawyer.
Basically I felt like it was forced to agree to a CS and s7 based on $40000 per year which I was making with my previous employer.
I did agree that I should be able to find a job at this income level however three months later I still can't find a job.
At the same time the judge also ordered that I pay extra expences for hockey and lacrosse which would be part of my s7 expences.
As far as child care s7's the opposing lawyer had no proof or receipts yet I felt
And as for Hockey and Lacrosse I am ordered to pay this increased amount as part of my s7's however they are not registered for either sport and registrations have come and gone.

So this is where we are today......

The judge adjurned the matter until Jan 29, 2009 at which time she intends to look at he CS arrears.

I'm still not working and effective Dec 2008 I feel forced into this agreement of CS and s7's plus extra expences on an income level that in non existant.

The ex's laywers is requesting that the amount of arrears be calculated up to Dec 2008 at the employment income of ($70000) which was what it was prior to me losing my job in Dec 2007.

Countless proofs on income EI statments ect have been provided to the court since my loss of employment.

And now! COSTS!
Her freaking lawyer wants cost for the November court date and the upcoming January court date.

How is all this fair?
Can someone out the please tell me how this is fair?
Essentually the system forced me to file a motion to reduce the CS and now I could be faced with costs?
And now I just received a letter from the FRO saying that if I don't deal with this by Feb 28 that they will suspend all my federal licences.

I want to work, I've been desperately seeking employment and I'm not getting any luck.
I feel like I'm being pushed into a corner and I have no hope.
I want to pay my support however I think it needs to be geared to income and it should also be retroactive to employment changes.

I have one more question.....
If I didn't lose my job in Dec 2007 and it was a$20000 raise instead...
Would it take a year for the increase to take effect?....not likely!
  #2  
Old 01-26-2009, 01:55 PM
billm's Avatar
billm billm is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,431
billm is on a distinguished road
Default

Hi, sorry for your troubles.

I just have a comment. You say 'my ex's lawyer' but I think of it as 'my ex'. SHE wants you to pay court costs, SHE wants you to pay CS based on a salary that you haven't had for a year. Her lawyer works for her, she is responsible for her lawyer's actions - though many ex's don't see it that way.

This may be a silly question - but have you talked to her, what does she say she thinks is fair?

Does "a) Have the CS adjusted by way of consent" mean she can just contact the FRO herself, or send in a quick letter from her lawyer that she agrees to a lower payment? Or does it mean a court order is necessary?
  #3  
Old 01-26-2009, 01:56 PM
#1StepMom #1StepMom is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 885
#1StepMom is on a distinguished road
Default

I feel your pain, Chopper! My husband is in the same boat. He lost his job in October and has not been able to find anything suitable since. He took a commissions-only job, with lots of promises, but hasn't yet brought a penny home. In the meantime, he has drained his savings and borrowed money to continue paying CS in the amount last ordered based on his previous job, so that his license does not get suspended as he needs his car for work and to transport his child to and from visits. We filed a motion to change the CS amount less than one week after his termination. We went to court in December, and nothing got resolved, and a case conference had been set... for March! In the meantime, we are barely scraping by, and my stepson's mom is throwing every possible expense our way all of a sudden (even asking for over 50% of the cost of the child's birth certificate from six years ago!)

And just as you, her lawyer is asking for costs as well!

After meeting with duty counsel at the family law clinic at the courthouse, we were informed that there is no way the judge would order costs to be paid, and that it's just a "lawyer thing" that all lawyers ask for on behalf of their clients.

I completely agree that if this were for an increase in CS, it wouldn't take this long. Hang in there. You're not alone in this boat, especially with how many layoffs there are now. I hope something gets resolved for you soon. I totally understand how frustrating it is!
  #4  
Old 01-26-2009, 01:58 PM
#1StepMom #1StepMom is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 885
#1StepMom is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by billm View Post
Does "a) Have the CS adjusted by way of consent" mean she can just contact the FRO herself, or send in a quick letter from her lawyer that she agrees to a lower payment? Or does it mean a court order is necessary?
From what we found out at our last court date, a consent needs to be filed with the court prior to being sent to FRO. FRO will only act on a change in CS if there is an order or consent filed with the courts.
  #5  
Old 01-26-2009, 02:00 PM
FL_Needs_To_Change's Avatar
FL_Needs_To_Change FL_Needs_To_Change is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Northern Ontario
Posts: 1,261
FL_Needs_To_Change has a spectacular aura aboutFL_Needs_To_Change has a spectacular aura about
Default

Submit a counter claim (reply) for his request for costs, and give the court your documentation IE the letter you sent to the lawyer explaining your financial situation, plus all subsequent correspondence to that affect demonstrating that they were aware of your lost job and request to adjust CS.

You can show a paper trail of you advising of your last employment, the lawyer acknowledging receipt of your letter and that it was to be included in the draft order that was to be heard, but never was, plus all the exclusions that the lawyer was told to correct, and the fact that the lawyer did none of these. Not only did the omissions and errors cause the issue not to be addressed at the first appearance, which he is claiming costs against, but also set you farther into debt with the FRO.

Just outline what you have stated above with dates times etc.
Include all supporting documents to show they were made aware of your situation prior to the first appearance and failed to include them for the courts to see.

Then outline how it has financially impacted you and seek your own costs.
If they had adjusted the CS with a consent to change form the FRO would not have you in arrears, and if they had not omitted the mobility clauses etc, you would have agreed and signed the draft order thereby avoiding any subsequent appearances.

You have a strong position to ask that you not be ordered to pay costs because of omissions and errors on their part.
And seek to have CS further adjusted to where you are now even if it is on EI, until you gain employment. At which time you will provide documentation so that CS can once again be adjusted to reflect current income levels. Maybe an explanation of how the economic hardship is affecting your ability to be employed at past levels and that you needed to take what was available until the market/economy changes to allow you to get the employment that you have been accustomed.
  #6  
Old 01-27-2009, 01:01 PM
Chopper Chopper is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 65
Chopper is on a distinguished road
Default Case Law

Does anyone know of any case law in Ontario that supports a father not having to pay costs to the other party for bring such a motion?

I go to court on Thursday I know much of the conversation from the other side is going to be about me paying costs! It's very apparent everytime we go to court that she is trying to stick it to me.

The ex's argument when we were in court in Nov 2008 was that I did nothing to deal with this out of court....however the way I see it, after the FRO got involved I didn't really have any choice but to move forward with the motion. Considering this, the ex made no point of tabling some kind of consent agreement either, for the exception of the letter that was sent to me in Jan 2008 suggesting that I draft up an order which I later learned would serve absolutely no purpose.

One other thing I would like to mention, in order to comply with the FRO request I had to file the motion in June 2008. One of the girls at the clerks office told me that before I file the motion I should make another attepmt of asking for consent.
I did this!.... on the day that I was supposed to have the motion filed I waited until 3pm before filing the motion. When I was leaving the court house approx 4:30pm the ex's legal assistant called me and ask me where she could fax her responce.... she knows I don't have a fax machine....so she said it will be mailed. I just straight out asked her.... are you going to consent or not?....she said no.

It seems to me how the timing of all her actions seem to be a big game and when she stands in front of the judge I'm the bad guy!
  #7  
Old 01-27-2009, 01:20 PM
FL_Needs_To_Change's Avatar
FL_Needs_To_Change FL_Needs_To_Change is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Northern Ontario
Posts: 1,261
FL_Needs_To_Change has a spectacular aura aboutFL_Needs_To_Change has a spectacular aura about
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopper View Post
....however the way I see it, after the FRO got involved I didn't really have any choice but to move forward with the motion. Considering this, the ex made no point of tabling some kind of consent agreement either, for the exception of the letter that was sent to me in Jan 2008 suggesting that I draft up an order which I later learned would serve absolutely no purpose.
If you can show that you attempted to negotiate to have a consent filled out for FRO (as FRO will only abide by a court order OR a consent to change CS form) then this is basically the same as an offer to settle. Having submitted an offer to settle and having the court rule in your favour on CS means that costs on this will not be ordered against you but rather the loosing party. That’s with the assumption that the only issue on the motion is to vary CS

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopper View Post
One other thing I would like to mention, in order to comply with the FRO request I had to file the motion in June 2008. One of the girls at the clerks office told me that before I file the motion I should make another attepmt of asking for consent.
This will further establish your attempt to settle the CS issue out of court.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopper View Post
I did this!.... on the day that I was supposed to have the motion filed I waited until 3pm before filing the motion. When I was leaving the court house approx 4:30pm the ex's legal assistant called me and ask me where she could fax her responce.... she knows I don't have a fax machine....so she said it will be mailed. I just straight out asked her.... are you going to consent or not?....she said no.
Hind sight is 20/20, but all discussions with the other party should always be in writing.
Hard in this case I know. But had this particular conversation been in writing it also could have been used against the other party in your favour. You attempted to settle but they flat out refused preferring instead to take the issue straight to court
Perhaps a brief mention of this verbal interaction would be considered by the courts as well??
Closed Thread


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:59 PM.