Toronto High Income Child & Spousal Support Lawyers
Marital separation and divorce is never an easy process. In addition to the emotional stress caused by the end of a marriage or relationship, you may also be worried about how you will be able to effectively get on with life and directly participate in activities with your children when the courts require you to hand over to your spouse so much of your hard earned income. You worry as to how you are supposed to manage. At the Gene C. Colman Family Law Centre, our Toronto high income child and spousal support lawyers understand how important it is for your lawyer to take every step within the law that will serve to protect your high income earning capabilities. We will work to ensure that your support obligations are kept to levels that are as reasonable as possible (given the nature of our child and spousal support laws). We want to help you find a legal way to minimize the potentially crippling repercussions that sometimes come with support payments for high income earners.
Do not assume that the first suggestion for spousal support or child support by your spouse (or her lawyer) must necessarily be an accurate reflection of what a court would order you to pay. It is to your strategic advantage to obtain an unbiased, frank and informed opinion with respect to your options and possibilities to reach a fair solution to such issues. Contact Gene C. Colman online or call 1-888-389-3099 to schedule a meeting to discuss your situation.
High Income and Child Support Guidelines
Our Toronto divorce lawyers understand that high income is relative. However, the law considers an annual gross (pre-tax) income of $150,000 or more to be high for the purposes of child support. Support payments tend to be pretty straightforward (with a few distinct exceptions) up until this ceiling. However, the court has some discretion to deviate from the standard formula when considering individuals with a high annual income. This is why it is important to have a lawyer who can make creative yet appropriate arguments to ensure that you are not required to pay an unfair or unreasonable amount of child support.
High Income and the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines
For spousal support purposes, a high income is considered to be $350,000 or more. The courts of Canada are effectively required to consider the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines (SSAG) when determining the amount of spousal support payments. The SSAG can be a helpful starting point when analyzing spousal support obligations and how those obligations are to be fulfilled. However, the authors of the SSAG themselves claim that these guidelines are intended to be “voluntary” and “advisory” only. The lawyers at the Gene C. Colman Family Law Centre endeavour to remind opposing counsel and the courts that the basic law of the Divorce Act, which was duly passed by Parliament, should be the starting point for determining what is truly a fair amount of and duration for spousal support.
The SSAG themselves talk of exceptions being applied to the standard formulaic approach. We will carefully consider your case to determine whether any of those exceptions may apply and review any relevant caselaw that may trump the presumptions created by the SSAG. We will also pay careful attention to the correct calculation of income to help ensure that you are not required to pay any more than your fair share.
Family Law And Retirement – Can I Ever Retire?
One of the issues that our higher earning clients in particular find disturbing is that they are not necessarily entitled to a reduction in spousal support payments when they retire and draw on their pension. A fellow who has worked hard all his life, has had the value of his pension included in the property settlement (“Equalization of Net Family Property”) is shocked to hear that spousal support reduction is not automatic. It depends on a number of factors including just how your Separation Agreement or Court Order may have addressed the “retirement” issue. Read our Blog Post on Family Law and Retirement.
Call for a Consultation at an Ontario Alimony Calculation Law Firm
You should not be punished for having a high income by being ordered to make unfair and potentially crippling support payments. Contact our Toronto high income support lawyers online or call 1-888-389-3099 for an initial consultation to discuss your case.