The law of spousal support is intended to relieve economic disadvantage suffered by the recipient party upon the breakdown of a marriage or relationship. At the same time, the law of spousal support requires a recipient of spousal support to become financially self-sufficient by gaining employment or pursuing education or job training to become re-employed.
A spousal support obligation may arise where the parties are entitled to spousal support at law and there is sufficient disparity in the gross annual income of the payor and recipient.
Entitlement to spousal support will arise where two parties are married. Entitlement will also arise in medium to long term common law relationship or in circumstances where there are dependent children of the relationship. However, entitlement to spousal support does not mean spousal support will be payable at law. Whether spousal support is payable, and the amount and duration of spousal support, will depend on several factors including but not limited to:
- The nature of the relationship of the parties
- The gross annual income of each party
- The length of the relationship of the parties
- Whether the parties have any dependent children
- The financial ability of the payor to pay spousal support
- The corresponding need of the recipient for spousal support
In the event spousal support is payable, there are many ways in which this obligation can be satisfied. For example, spousal support may take the more traditional form of monthly periodic payments. On the contrary, a spousal support obligation may be satisfied in full by a lump sum payment of money to the recipient in exchange for the recipient releasing his or her right to claim any further payment for spousal support.
In circumstances where spousal support is payable, this is an issue to be negotiated by the parties. The issue of spousal support generally affords the payor and recipient some room to negotiate a creative resolution. However, if the parties are unable to successfully finalize the issue of spousal support through negotiation, one party may choose to commence a Court proceeding to seek finality on the issue of spousal support. Traditionally this would be the recipient of spousal support commencing a Court proceeding seeking payment of spousal support.
There are several sets of circumstances that will materially change the amount of spousal support payable or the duration of same. For instance, suppose a recipient party becomes remarried, spousal support will typically come to an end. In this instance, a support payor may seek to terminate his or her spousal support obligation.
Our goal is to provide you with timely and cost effective legal advice in your family matter. We will provide you with practical advice and superior guidance in your family matter. We will answer all of your questions regarding spousal support including duration of spousal support (if any) and amount of spousal support payable. We will assist you in putting a plan in place to move forward in your matter.
To discuss your matter, please call 905-720-0777.
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