Family Lawyers Help With Spousal Support Issues

Whether you are married or in a common-law relationship, you are still considered a spouse and need to know your rights and obligations.

The division of property also needs to be looked at carefully because the assumed 50:50 split (i.e. each party gets 50% of the accounts and RRSP’s) is not how it really works for married people. People also need to be aware that the law treats common law partners differently for property division.

Spousal support can be very complicated. There is a new tool available called the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines (SSAG) that lawyers are using and more and more judges are looking to when deciding spousal support awards. The lawyer’s job is to take the legalese and put it into normal everyday language and help you work through what is an appropriate amount and duration of support; when should it end, if at all; how it should be reviewed; how property should be divided; and so on.

Often calculating spousal support is fairly straightforward if you are a T-4 employee and have a bank account, a few RSP’s, GIC’s, lines of credit and credit card debt. However, if you are a self-employed person, it complicates things because we need to know what your income is and value your business. If you have more complicated assets, such as multiple properties, and investments or assets (i.e. pensions) we often have to bring in experts to help with valuations. Whether it is complicated or not, your lawyer is there to make sure that all the i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed and your rights are protected.


If you, or someone you care about, is dealing with Child Custody issues in York Region, Durham Region or Toronto, contact Feldstein Family Law Group for a consultation on Child Custody. Andrew has more than 20 years of experience solving Child Custody and many other family law related issues.

This article is taken from a February 25, 2009 interview with Sanja Curic, Family Lawyer with Feldstein Family Law Group a Toronto Ontario Family Law Firm. Note that laws vary from province to province. Please consult with a lawyer in your own area to be sure of the laws and specific issues in your own jurisdiction.