Let’s face it—you already know that divorce is tough. You will be emotionally, financially, and mentally overwhelmed while going through all the divorce processes.
Plus, alimony is difficult because there are many criteria that you need to determine—who’s the receiver or who’s the payor?
So, thinking about how alimony works in Alberta? This article explains everything that you need to know about this topic.
Let’s get started.
What is Alimony?
“Alimony” and “Spousal Support” are similar terms. A common-law relationship is known as Adult Interdependent Relationship. In such situations, one spouse will receive financial support from the other partner if the marriage fails.
Couples usually come to an agreement on different financial terms when they’re married. As every couple is a team, they need to work together to manage the chores or have earnings.
Alimony is very important in Divorce Act. When you choose spousal support, it ensures that you will get support even when your partner decides to get divorced or separated.
The partner with a higher income has to pay the other partner when the couple is separating or getting a divorce. This helps to cover the low earned partner’s living cost.
According to the law, two acts can control alimony:
- The Family Law Act of Alberta
- The Divorce Act of Canada.
In Alberta or any other state in Canada, three different aspects to consider while having alimony:
- Amount: How much money needs to get paid?
- Entitlement: Who gets the alimony?
- Duration: How long will you get alimony?
Let’s know in detail.
Who Will Get alimony?
There are many factors that the court goes through while deciding who will get alimony. Hence, the court takes a lot of time to find which spouse requires support in real.
There are no rules that you can follow to get support. You can hire a family lawyer to fight for your case. Some cases are unique. Here a lawyer can represent you in the best way possible.
How to Calculate Alimony?
Judges follow a few rules and regulations to decide the alimony amount. However, there’s no legal binding for such rules and regulations.
It depends on whether the individual can create a strong case to get alimony. You can follow the Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines to know more about the amount you will receive.
Alimony in Alberta can depend on several factors as follows:
- Financial source
- Need of an individual
- Duration of marriage
- Roles of the partners
- Effect of the roles in the marriage
- Taking care of children
- Encouraging the other partner to be self-dependent in a certain time length
- Any agreement, arrangement, or order related to alimony.
When the court evaluates “the couple’s financial sources and needs,” they properly dig into the expenses and incomes. In some situations, the court finds that both the person have quite similar income and doesn’t even hold high expenses like medical costs. Here, the court will decide to provide no alimony.
Think about A having more earnings than B, and the gap is quite large. There is a high chance that A would require to pay B for such situations. In some cases, one partner can move to a new job, or another partner can earn more. Even in these cases, the court would verify your income in the marriage.
Also, there are situations where one might give up their career to take care of children and home. In such cases, the court would give alimony to them as their income loss occurred because of marriage.
How Long Should You Pay Alimony?
After the court grants alimony eligibility, the judge will decide the duration and amount. There are a few factors that depend on deciding the values, like:
- Alimony ends when the receiver passes away
- Support keeps going in case the payor dies (if they have any assets or life insurance to keep on paying)
- Support might end if the receiver cohabits or marries a new person (this situation isn’t automatic)
- Support might end when a payor retires (this situation isn’t automatic)
When the judge finalizes agreements or orders, they mention a date or event where the support ends. For instance, when the receiver remarries or the payor’s retirement.
When nothing of this sort is mentioned, there’s no option where the agreement will end. In such cases, you and your spouse might get a separate agreement, or the judge will decide one.
You can find a review date on order in most situations. So, there’s a chance of terminating or modifying the order when you start reviewing.
How to Terminate a Spousal Support?
You can barely see that the court applies any changes or termination in the Spousal Support for minor situations. But they will reassess the support order if there are major changes from the warrant time.
Here are four ways of attempting to terminate spousal support:
Check the Support Order
You can check whether there’s any date or event mentioned in the support order or separation agreement. In many cases, you will surely find a review date or a date where the support ends.
Sometimes, the support order has a particular event, like payor retirement, receiver’s remarriage, etc., to end the alimony.
Assess to Have Material Changes
In this step, you would need legal help. Before reassessing your case, you should assess whether the changes fall under material changes. Also, it should be an important cause for the court to change the order.
This is risky as the court has already reviewed all documents to make a support order. Your order will be terminated only when the court sees new evidence about your financial state.
Communicate with Each Other
If you and your partner are still communicating, you should discuss to decide on a proper agreement. You can take the help of a legal counsellor or mediator to find a solution.
In case the support gets finalized on the final court order, both of you can end it with consent. Therefore, you will require to give documents for seeking another order.
In most cases, such couples decide to create a new agreement for themselves and move it to the court to get granted.
Apply Through the Court
First, you need to process your file to the family court before you start processing the support order. This step will need legal help.
When confronting the judge, you must explain whether the changes should terminate the order. Specially, you must explain the points you mention.
If you hire an experienced lawyer, they can advise focusing on your case. Also, they can create a persuasive conversation so that the alimony gets terminated.
In conclusion, you can get Alimony in Alberta Canada, with an experienced family lawyer. They have a unique insight and strategy to handle such cases. Whether you’re a receiver or a payor, you should decide what’s best for you.