Spousal Support

Spousal Support is usually based on the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines, which are guidelines that help determine how much, if any, Spousal Support you may be entitled to receive, or you may be required to pay.

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When Are You Entitled To Spousal Support?

If you are married, then you or your spouse may be entitled to Spousal Support.  If you are not married, and you and your spouse have no children together, then Spousal Support will not be an issue in your matter unless you have been living together for three years or longer.  If you are not married and you have a child together (adopted or otherwise), then Spousal Support may be an issue in your case.

In order to receive Spousal Support, you must prove that you are entitled to it.  Proving that you or your spouse is entitled to Spousal Support usually includes proving that one of you needs Spousal Support, that one of you has the financial ability to pay Spousal Support, and/or that one of you should be compensated for unpaid labour or loss of employment during your relationship. 

Factors That Influence Spousal Support

If/when entitlement to Spousal Support is established, the quantum and duration of support must be determined.  The issue of Spousal Support is based on many factors, such as your and your spouse’s respective incomes, the length of your relationship, any previous written agreements, the responsibilities of each of you throughout your relationship, and the ability of each of you to be self-sufficient after separation.

Spousal Support paid pursuant to a Court Order or written Agreement is usually tax deductible to the payor and tax inclusive to the recipient.  This means that if you pay Spousal Support, you may be able to deduct the Spousal Support payments that you make on your Income Tax Returns and if you receive Spousal Support, you will likely have to report these payments as income on your Income Tax Returns.