Family quarrels are bitter things. They don’t go according to any rules. They’re not like aches or wounds; they’re more like splits in the skin that won’t heal because there’s not enough material.
~ F. Scott Fitzgerald
Family Law covers a wide range of issues that couples, children and whole families may undergo. Topmarké Attorneys family law experts recognize the delicacy and sensitivity that are involved in these matters and is ready to manage them with care, tact, and caution.
What can we help you with?
- Divorce Proceedings or Separation Agreements
- Child Support
- Equalization of Family Property
Divorce Proceedings Or Separation Agreements
If you are separated or considering separation, it is crucial to seek legal representation at the earliest possible stage to become fully informed about your legal rights. We understand there are several different approaches to solving these disputes. Our lawyers’ goal is to offer you every possible option in resolving your family law matters at your most stressful and emotional period of your lives.
By law, parents—birth parent, non-birth parent, adoptive parent and sometimes a step-parent—are responsible for financially supporting their dependent children. Dependent usually is a child who is under the age of 18 but sometimes there can be dependents who are 18 or above the age of 18.
By and large, child support helps to cover the costs of caring for a child. It is essentially money paid by the parent that spends the least amount of time with the child to the parent who spends the most time with the child to take care of them.
One thing to keep in mind is that child support arrangement is necessary when a couple, married or unmarried decide to split and they have a child or children between them.
The parent with higher income may still have to pay some child support even if the child spends an equal amount of time with each parent.
By using Child Support Guidelines and Child Support Tables from the Government of Canada, you can try to reach an agreement with your partner about child support before going to court. This will give you an idea as to how much child support a judge may order.
The guidelines demonstrate the basic monthly cost for child support and they include expenses such as clothes, groceries, and school supplies. This is based on the gross annual income of the payor parent and the number of children they have to support. Please note that each province and territory have their separate table.
Also, there are other factors that can have an impact on the amount of child support a judge might order. Here are some examples:
- Special or extraordinary expenses (e.g. daycare)
- Type of parenting arrangement (e.g. shared or split custody)
- Undue hardship/Financial hardship—circumstances that make it challenging for the payor parent in paying child support.
- Retroactive support start date, before the date of the court order.
- Children over the age of majority = children who are 18 or older.
Equalization Of Family Property
The equal contribution of each person to the marriage is recognized by law when a marriage ends. The law states that the value of any type of property that was obtained by a spouse during the marriage and still exists at separation must be divided equally between the spouses. Furthermore, it is mandatory for a spouse to share any increase in the property value that is owned by him or her. An equalization payment or an equalization of net family property is the payment that may be payable to one of the spouses in order to affect this sharing.
However, there could be possible exceptions to these rules; they are known as excluded property and it may include gifts or inheritances received during the marriage from someone other than a spouse, given that they were not used towards a matrimonial home.
It is critical to note that these automatic property sharing provisions are only applied to married spouses. You are not entitled to an equalization payment if you are in a common law relationship but you could be entitled to a payment from your spouse to repay you a direct or indirect contribution to property that he or she possesses. These claims are known as trust claims.