Spousal Support

Experienced Representation in Spousal Support Cases

Marriage is a family partnership. Like other partnerships, it has financial elements. In the appropriate case, a court may find one party entitled to financial support. Laws like the Divorce Act and Ontario’s Family Law Act give the courts direction on the issue of entitlement. Courts must consider compensatory elements of a claim such as child care or a spouse’s career sacrifices. Non-compensatory principles like economic dependency based on a standard of living are also considered. While the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines help predict the amount and duration of spousal support, they do not have the force of law.

Spousal support (formerly known as alimony) can become complex in cases involving hidden or artificially low income that require a fulsome investigation. A thorough investigation of income may lead to imputing income to resolve spousal support disputes. The Toronto spousal support law firm of Thomas J. MacLennan, Barrister & Solicitor, offers extensive experience to clients in Toronto and throughout Ontario with complex divorce and high-income spousal support matters.

Ontario Alimony Lawyer Advising Clients About Support Calculations

Spousal support laws have significantly evolved in recent years. Need and ability to pay were previously the main factors used in determining if a spousal support award was warranted. However, several factors are now used to consider whether spousal support should be awarded and, if so, how much should be awarded.

Some of the factors considered include:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The assets, income and financial obligations of each party
  • The roles each party played in the marriage
  • The ongoing care of the children
  • The amount of support a spouse needs to become self-sufficient
  • The amount of support a spouse needs to meet his or her needs
  • Any spousal support provisions contained within a domestic contract, such as a marriage contract or cohabitation agreement

Common-law partners may also be entitled to spousal support based on the same factors.

Income Determinations in High-Income/High-Asset Relationship Breakdown

Toronto spousal support lawyer Thomas J. MacLennan has more than 35 years of experience handling complex family law disputes. He educates our firm’s clients about how the court handles spousal support matters and advises them about how to advance their interests. This becomes extremely important in cases where one or both spouses have considerable assets or a high-income level. Careful analysis of assets and income is necessary to ensure proper calculations of support are made.

When one or both parties run a business or own interests in a business, it is often helpful to obtain an expert income report. Failure to obtain an accurate income report may result in an inaccurate assessment of income and, therefore, an improperly low spousal support award.

Thorough Protection of Your Financial Interests in Divorce

Our Ontario divorce and family law firm provides clients with informative, personalized, and responsive legal counsel. Contact a skilled Toronto spousal support lawyer through our online form or call 416-591-1354 to arrange a consultation.