Spousal Support

Spousal Support Advice from Toronto’s Financially Focused Family Lawyer

In the unfortunate event of separation or divorce, most former couples face the question of how to determine fair spousal support payments. For high-income earners and their spouses, or spouses who own a business or professional corporation, this question is often complicated by a large number of assets that may be difficult to accurately assess.

Financial Litigation is a boutique law firm specifically focused on helping couples with the financial elements of their family law disputes, including calculating spousal support. We bring our knowledge of complex corporate litigation to our family law practice and offer tailored advice to business owners, professionals, other high-income individuals, about their rights and obligations. We advise our clients on the financial repercussions and possible economic risks of separation and divorce, and help them mitigate this risk and factor the breakdown of a marriage into their long-term wealth or business succession planning.

What is the purpose of spousal support?

Marriage is a partnership. Where one spouse earns a high income, owns their own business, or is a successful professional, their partner may have made sacrifices to facilitate their career growth, or care for children.

Spousal support is intended to compensate a lower income spouse that has lost career opportunities or earning potential during the marriage. The longer a couple has been married, the longer spousal support payments may last.

How are spousal support payments calculated?

Spousal support payments are not determined by any legalisation, although the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines offer some recommendations based on income and length of cohabitation. These recommendations are generally followed by family lawyers and judges in making determinations as to the appropriate level of support.

Spouses seeking support must establish entitlement to that support, and the amount is calculated based upon:

  • The length of the relationship;
  • The relative incomes of the spouses;
  • The work history of the spouses and their future prospects for employment;
  • Health or disability status; and
  • Age.

Eli Karp has excellent relationships with forensic accountants and valuation specialists to ensure that complex financial arrangements including corporations, self-employment income, and other financial instruments are properly assessed in negotiations over spousal support.

There can be circumstances where spousal support should be revisited, for example if one spouse’s income changes, or if the spouse receiving payments remarries. Financial Litigation is on hand to discuss potential changes to spousal support at any time.

Advising high-income earners and their spouses about spousal support

High-income earners need legal advice from a lawyer that handles the financial elements of family law matters on a daily basis. Financial Litigation focuses on helping entrepreneurs, business owners and other professionals resolve spousal support issues, while always being mindful of their financial interests. To schedule an appointment, contact us online or call 416-769-4107 x1.