Saskatoon Child Support Lawyers Providing Legal Advice to Parents Navigating Child Support Issues
If you are going through a divorce and you have children, you should plan to discuss important family law matters, such as child support. That’s because, in Canada, all children are entitled to be financially supported by their parents, so the parenting arrangements are expected to help pay for the child’s basic expenses. As a result, your divorce can’t proceed to the next step until you and your spouse come up with a child support agreement together.
Of course, it’s hard to agree on much when you’re dealing with a highly emotional legal process like divorce. So, if you and your spouse cannot negotiate a child support arrangement that works for both of you, it’s time to reach out to a Saskatoon child support lawyer for legal assistance. At Panko Collaborative Law & Mediation, we have years of experience guiding divorcing spouses toward child support agreements without going to court. Call our law firm today if you’re interested in getting mediation or similar services for this family law matter.
How Is Child Support Calculated?
In most cases, if you are the sole decision-making parent, your former spouse will be expected to pay child support to you. This will help you afford your child’s needs, including food, clothing, daycare expenses, medical expenses, and other costs. If you’re wondering how much you can expect to receive in child support payments, the answer is that it depends on a few factors. They typically include:
- The other parent’s income
- Cost of living in the province or territory you’re in
- How many children the other parent is paying child support for
These factors are accounted for in the Child Support Guideline Table that the government uses to determine the basic child support obligation for the other parent. So, looking at that table can give you a good idea of how much you can expect to receive or pay for child support. Granted, there are sometimes exceptions to be made, so the amount you see on the table is not always set in stone.
That’s why you should contact a Saskatoon family law firm to discuss child support during divorce proceedings. Even with the help of the government’s guidelines, calculating child support is not an easy task, but our team can provide the legal advice you will need to get an accurate idea of the correct amount for your family.
Can Child Support Be Modified?
Sometimes circumstances change over time, resulting in the sole decision-making parent needing more money from the other parent or the other parent abruptly being unable to pay the minimum amount. Fortunately, it’s possible to modify the child support order as needed, but only for certain reasons.
For instance, if you’re the other parent dealing with the sudden loss of your job, you can apply for a modification of your child support, stating that you can no longer afford to pay the amount you used to pay. Similarly, if you suddenly have to pay to support another child or have more debts than you used to, you may be able to apply for a reduction of the amount you need to pay. The same is true if the child now spends more time in your care than before, as this might reduce the amount you owe every month.
If you’re the sole decision-making parent and need more money from the other parent, you can petition to get the child support amount raised. You will likely need to show that you need financial help with additional expenses, such as an increased amount spent on child care, health insurance, university funding, extracurricular activities, and other costs.
No matter what changes you want to make to child support, you will need to get approval from the court first. So, do not simply stop paying the sole decision-making parent or start expecting a higher amount of money from theother parent next month. Everything will need to be approved by the courts first.
However, keep in mind that this doesn’t mean you will have to go into a courtroom for your child support case. As long as you and your former spouse agree on the new amount, it is possible to create a new child support agreement without court involvement. You will both need to fill out paperwork stating the reasons for the change in child support, and then explain how you arrived at the new amount. Once these documents are filed with the court with the help of your child support lawyer, they will likely be approved.
Of course, if the other parent refuses to agree to the new child support amount, you will probably have to go to mediation and possibly even court to make any changes. More complex child support cases like this will need legal guidance from experienced child support lawyers in Saskatoon, so come to our law firm if you encounter problems with your child support order.
What Happens If a Parent Doesn’t Pay?
Not paying child support in Canada is a serious matter. Divorcing your spouse does not mean you can be free of all the financial obligations you had while you were married. You are still expected to pay to raise your children, so there are numerous consequences if you do not pay the amount you’re supposed to on your involuntary or voluntary child support agreement. If you don’t pay child support as agreed, you could face one or more of these consequences:
- Garnishment of your wages
- Seizure of your bank account or any assets you own
- Suspension of your driver’s licence
- Suspension of your passport
- Garnishment of any federal payments you’re owed, including tax refunds
- Reduction in your credit score
In some cases, you could even face jail time and fines if you do not pay child support, though this is usually a last resort with child support enforcement efforts. You can avoid these penalties by making sure you pay the amount you were ordered to pay. If you’re having trouble with the amount, request a modification of the order rather than just not paying.
You should note that even if the other parent is not letting you see your child, you still need to pay child support while getting legal advice from a parenting arrangements lawyer in Saskatoon. At Panko Collaborative Law & Mediation, Saskatoon’s premier family law practitioners can handle your concerns regarding child support, sole or joint decision-making, parenting arrangements, and other family law matters, so call us today for help.
Do You Need to Talk to Child Support Lawyers in Saskatoon?
If you’re a mother or father dealing with child support issues, you deserve to get legal guidance and support from lawyers who have handled several cases like yours. At our Saskatoon law firm, we understand just how difficult family law matters are, so we strive to make the legal process easy on you. We know divorce brings out a lot of emotions, and we’re prepared to help you handle them while steering you in the right direction when it comes to family law.
We want to make sure the outcome you get is fair to you and your children, so we will provide you with the legal services you need as you figure out child support and more. Whether you’re seeking assistance with mediation, collaborative law, parenting coordination, or other options, we’re happy to help. Contact our law firm at 306-518-8107 to set up an initial consultation with friendly, skilled child support lawyers in Saskatoon today.