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Using life insurance to secure support

It’s not uncommon for payors of support- whether it’s child support or spousal support- to have their support obligations secured by a life insurance policy. If the payor dies prematurely, the life insurance policy is available to satisfy the remaining balance of their support payments. A court can order that support be secured by way…

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The price of delay- tackle your family law problem right away

One of the principles behind our legal system is that once you’re served with documents, if you don’t do anything to defend yourself, then, at some point, you can be noted in default and the case will proceed along without you. Once an order is made against you, you’ll get served with a copy of…

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Joint family venture for common law spouses

The law of joint family venture and unjust enrichment allow an individual in a common law relationship to make an equitable claim against the assets of their partner. The right of married spouses to an equalization of net family property is a statutory right enshrined in the Family Law Act. Married individuals have an automatic…

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Power of sale, the matrimonial home, and the untitled spouse

Sometimes, when couples separate, one spouse stays in the matrimonial home for years following the separation, even when they are not on the title to the house. While it’s not unusual for one spouse to hold the title to the house in their name as sole owner, if you are planning on living at the…

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Spousal support calculator

If you’re looking for a rough idea of how much you might be entitled to in spousal support (based on your respective incomes, and length of marriage), there’s a free online tool that can help. My Support Calculator is a scaled down version of the software that lawyers in Ontario use to calculate spousal support,…

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Is unbundled service right for you?

Many clients don’t know that they have the option of hiring a family lawyer on an unbundled basis rather than on a full retainer. “Unbundled service” can mean different things depending on the context. If you’re involved in litigation, it can mean hiring a lawyer to draft pleadings, for example, or hiring a lawyer to…

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Estate planning post separation

Once you’ve separated, it’s advisable to prepare a new Will as soon as possible. Otherwise, if you die without a Will, or with an older Will where your spouse was designated as a beneficiary, you soon-to-be ex stands to inherit under your estate. While a divorce will automatically revoke any designation you made with respect…

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Motions for substituted service

Any initiating court document, including an Application for an uncontested divorce, must be served in person on the responding party. This is called “special service”. Normally, you would hire a professional process server to serve the materials on the individual at their home or place of work. However, if you’ve been out of touch with…

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Answering a family case out of time

If the responding party lives in the U.S. or Canada, they have 30 days in which to respond to a family court Application once it has been served on them. The moving party, the Applicant, will file their affidavit of service in the court record confirming when the materials were served on the responding party.…

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FRO enforcement powers curbed by court

While there is no shortage of complaints against the Family Responsibility Office for not doing enough to enforce support orders, a case this past spring illustrates that, at times, FRO may be overly zealous in it’s pursuit of payors. In DeBiasio v. DeBiasio, there was an existing order for payment of child support. When the…

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