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Recent Cases 

Child Support Arrears

Child Support Arrears 
Edden v Foley, 2024 ABKB 48 

Issues: Dad failed to provide consistent and timely full financial disclosure to Mom.Dad received income increases from 2011-2015 & didn’t reflect these increases in his child support payments. Background: Dad’s approximate net worth = $637,000. Dad has multiple sources of funds from which to pay retro child support: •HELOC (home equity line of credit) •Rental property •Property sale proceeds •Liquid assets •Shareholder loan receivable Findings: Mom offered proposals that would have cleared arrears by end of 2023. Child is 14 ½ yrs and could use the support now. Periodic payments run the risk the child ‘ages out’ before arrears are paid in full. Dad will not experience hardship by paying child support arrears but even if he did, paying support to Mom & child is more pressing than mitigating any hardship Dad may experience. Dad enjoyed the time value of the support amounts he failed to pay and will continue to reap the benefits because Mom didn’t request interest on arrears. Ruling: Dad is to pay an immediate lump sum payment of $102,000 of child support arrears to Mom. The Court ordered immediate payment in full due to the inability of the parties to agree on an immediate or scheduled payments. Child support arears is to be registered at the Land Titles office against the titles of 2 of Dad’s properties. Court was concerned about underpayment or non-payment due to Dad’s history of non-disclosure and non-payment.

Spousal Support

Issue: Appellant Dad failed to provide financial disclosure (court-ordered) so chambers judge ordered Dad to pay Mom $3200 of interim spousal support per month. He filed a appeal challenging said interim spousal support interim order. Analysis: Based on the information available to the chambers judge, the order of monthly $3200 spousal support payments for compensatory and non-compensatory support was justified. Given that Dad didn’t provide the court-ordered disclosure, he had no right to complain about the amount. It isn’t uncommon for chambers judges to make such rulings based on incomplete information, until the matter goes to trial. Ruling: Appeal dismissed.

Equalization Payment

Issue: Mom (appellant) appeals order for equalization payment to Dad of ½ the net proceeds of the sale of the matrimonial home. Home was in Mom’s name only. Reason for appeal: Mom feels the trial judge erred in ordering the equalization payment given that Dad failed to provide any financial disclosure during the proceeds and also never requested equalization. Analysis: ONCA (Ontario Court of Appeal) agreed that the trial judge erred in their finding that Dad was entitled to an equalization payment. ONCA agreed there was no basis for the trial judge to order an equalization payment because Dad failed to provide financial disclosure. Ruling: Appeal was allowed. There is to be no equalization payment owing to either party. The remaining net proceeds of the matrimonial house sale shall be released immediately to Mom. Mom is entitled to costs of the appeal of $5000.

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