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Family Law - Child Support

Child Support

Child support is payable in almost all situations where the parents are living separate and apart and the children are under 18 years of age or over 18 and unable to withdraw from their parent’s care.

Calculation of child support usually requires three steps.  First, you must determine what each parent’s income is.  Sometimes this is straight-forward, such as when they work as an employee and have a set salary; sometimes it is more difficult to determine, such as when someone is self-employed or has various sources of income.

Second, the Federal Child Support Guidelines (FCSG) is a table that sets out the monthly amount of child support based on income and the number of children. Child support based on the FCSG table is paid to a parent only if that parent has primary residence (over 60% of time with the children).  This is referred to as Base Child Support, the Table Amount or Section 3 child support.  If you have shared residence where the children reside with both parents either 50-50% or 60-40% or 45-55%, there are other methods to calculate child support amounts.

Third, the parties must share reasonable and necessary Section 7 expenses, which are:

a)      Child care expense for employment, education, training, illness or disability purposes;

b)      Medical and Dental benefits premiums attributable to the children;

c)      Medical expenses exceeding more than $100.00 per incident per annum;

d)     Extraordinary expense for primary or secondary school education or for other educational programs that meet the child’s particular needs;

e)      Expenses for post-secondary education;

f)       Extraordinary expenses for extracurricular activities.

There are a number of factors used to determine what is reasonable, necessary and extraordinary.   Each family’s situation is unique and what may be allowed for one family as a section 7 expenses may not be considered a proper section 7 expenses for another family’s circumstances.

Each parent’s percentage contribution is determined by adding their incomes together and calculating each parent’s percentage of the total income.  For example, if parent A earns $40,000.00 and the parent B earns $60,000.00, than parent A may be required to pay 40% of these expenses to the parent B.

There are many ways to structure the calculation and payments of s. 7 expenses.  We will discuss with you your specific needs and determine what the best method is for you.  Also, there are also other extra expenses that the parents can agree to share.

Other factors affecting Child Support are:

  • If each parent has primary residence of at least one child;

  • If each parent has the children for over 40% of the time;

  • If the paying parent suffers from “Undue Hardship”.  There are specific tests that determine whether or not Undue Hardship exists.

  • When a paying parent earns more than $150,000.00 per annum;

  • When one or more children are over the age of 18 years.


If you have any questions or concerns about child support, section 7 expenses, determining incomes, please contact us to discuss.

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