30 - Spousal Support (Alimony) Entitlement

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30 - Entitlement to Spousal Support

Spousal support is an issue after the separation of many married and common law couples.  It is a complicated area of law that is often misunderstood by people who are not family law lawyers.  As a result, it is an area where separating spouses can make some very expensive mistakes.  One of the biggest possible mistakes to make is the assumption that a spouse is entitled to spousal support.  People look at on-line support calculators and assume that if that calculation shows spousal support owing that there must be support owing.  That is absolutely a mistake.  The Guidelines on which those calculations on based state that you should not even look at those calculations until it is clear that there is entitlement to spousal support.


Entitlement to spousal support is harder to achieve that many people assume.  The Family Law Statutes set out specific tests and circumstances when spousal support is payable, which if not met, means no spousal support.  Entitlement can be established on the basis of contractual obligations, compensatory support or non-compensatory support.  Where entitlement is established, the same considerations affect how much spousal support is paid and for how long.  It is not always correct to assume the midpoint for quantum and duration of spousal support.  Considering all these factors correctly can put a lot more money into the pocket of a separating spouse.  This edition of the Ontario Family Podcast gives an overview of entitlement to spousal support and all these factors. Separating spouses should list to this podcast to make sure that they do not shortchange themselves.


Thousands of people tune into the Ontario Family Law Podcast every month to get valuable pointers on family law, divorce and separation issues that can save them thousands of dollars.  It is also available on iTunes.  The Ontario Family Law Podcast is a companion to this easy-to-understand book on the Basics of Ontario Family Law, which is also available for immediate download as a $9.99 ebook from Amazon (Canada) and Kobo or as and iBook for iPad, iPhone or Mac.  For a more comprehensive explanation of family law issues, and a guide to Ontario’s Family Courts, download a copy, order a copy from Amazon, or request it at your favourite bookstore.


The host of the Ontario Family Law PodcastJohn Schuman, is a Certified Specialist in Family Law and Divorce Trial Lawyer, mediator, arbitrator and collaborative lawyer, practicing in Toronto at Devry Smith Frank LLP, which is a full service law firm with several excellent lawyers in family law.  If you would like to contact John Schuman, either call 416-446-5847, email him or fill out form below and click “send.”  We respond promptly whenever someone contacts us.  


If you would like to comment on this edition of the podcast, please use the form below.  Your comments may help others in difficult family law, divorce or estates and succession situations.   You can also use the form below to suggest topics for future editions of the Ontario Family Law Podcast.  Please feel free to share this podcast with your social network using the sharing buttons below. 


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