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Family Lawyers for Varying Custody and Support Agreements

After a divorce or separation has been finalized, there may be changes in an individual’s personal circumstances, or those of their ex-spouse, that create a need to revisit the terms of any arrangement addressing child custody and support payments, spousal support, or the division of property. Even the most carefully crafted arrangements may need to be altered in the face of unexpected life events.

Common Reasons for Seeking to Vary Spousal Support, Child Support, and Custody Arrangements

At Gelman & Associates, we can assist new and existing clients who are seeking to vary the terms of a separation agreement or court order. Although any major life change may trigger the need for an amendment, some of the common reasons that clients need to modify a divorce or separation agreement include:

  • Significant changes in income or earning potential of either spouse, such as losing a job, becoming disabled, getting a big promotion, or obtaining an advanced degree;
  • Substantial changes to a child’s needs or expenses, for example, due to a serious medical condition;
  • Cohabitation or remarriage by a spouse that receives support payments;
  • A child reaches the age of majority or is no longer a dependent; and
  • Changes in living arrangements, custody and access, including one parent wanting to relocate with a child.

Variation of Support in the face of a separation agreement

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Approaches to Making a Post-Separation or Post-Divorce Modification

We consider each client’s personal situation to determine the best way to approach any variations or amendments. When everyone can agree on the general terms and goals of post-divorce modifications, a skilled family lawyer can formalize these changes through an amended agreement or court order with the cooperation of both parties.

Where former spouses are not on amicable terms, or if they cannot agree on the particular modifications to be made, they may want to engage in mediation with a neutral third party. Mediation offers a cost-effective means of resolving disputes.

Where mediation is not successful, parties can choose to submit their dispute to a binding arbitration process, or seek a court order to finalize the changes. These steps can be costly, and we recommend speaking to a qualified family lawyer that can help.

  • Components of Child Support

    • Basic monthly amount or the table amount
    • Special expenses
    • Extraordinary expenses

  • Basis of Child Support Amounts

    • Income
    • The residency arrangements of the children
    • The number of children involved
    • The province or territory where you live

Pro Tip

When deciding the parental arrangement with your spouse, ensure that you should prioritize your child’s needs over anything else.

pro-tip-icon

Ontario Family Lawyers in Aurora, Barrie, Downtown Toronto, Mississauga, North York and Scarborough Assisting with Changes to Custody and Support Agreements

If you have experienced a change in circumstances, or have found that an existing child custody or support agreement is no longer working in your best interests, the team at Gelman & Associates can review your situation and determine what types of changes should be sought. Our offices can be reached Monday to Friday from 8 AM to 8 PM. To schedule a brief consultation, call us at (416) 736-0200 or 1-844-736-0200, or contact us online.

FAQ

Even though there are several custody agreements in Canada, the most common one is shared custody or joint legal custody. This agreement is healthier for the child.

Generally, courts will respect the child’s wishes once he or she turns 12. However, that’s nothing concrete and a court can choose to disregard the child’s wishes as well.

Parents’ separation is not easy for any child, especially if they want to live with the other parent. It’s best to try to understand your child’s situation and, as much as possible, have an amicable conversation with your former partner so that you can both come up with a decision that is best for your child.

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