Spousal support is one of the critical issues to be resolved when a couple has decided to separate. If you're thinking of separating from your spouse or getting a divorce in Alberta, you may be wondering about how spousal support issues are handled under Canadian law. Here are some important facts to know about spousal support in Alberta divorce cases.
What is Spousal Support?
Spousal support is a legal obligation for one spouse to provide the other with financial support after the couple decides to sever the relationship. Synonyms include partner support, alimony, palimony and maintenance.
How is Spousal Support Allocated in Alberta Divorce Cases?
Spousal support is not automatically entitled. It may be awarded under any of these circumstances:
- If the marriage economically disadvantaged one spouse, spousal support may be awarded on compensatory grounds.
- If the separation or divorce creates economic hardship for one spouse, spousal support may be awarded based on need.
- If a prenuptial or other contractual agreement exists, the provisions of the agreement will be followed in regards to spousal support.
In Alberta, there are multiple authorities governing how spousal support issues are handled:
- Alberta's Family Act
- Canada's Federal Divorce Act
- Prenuptial agreements, if they exist
Judges also take the Spousal Support Guidelines into consideration, although these are not legally mandated.
How Much Spousal Support Should I Expect to Receive?
If you want to know exactly how much spousal support you would be obligated to pay or eligible to receive, you must consult a local family lawyer or divorce lawyer. These calculations need to be made using software that's designed just for this purpose. A Calgary divorce lawyer can best advise you of what your future spousal support obligations or entitlements are likely to be.
Consider Using Mediation Services
If you and your spouse have decided to divorce, a divorce lawyer can help you understand your particular situation. However, there may be no need to endure the stress and mental anguish of a court trial. Mediation services can offer the quickest, most cost effective approach to resolving familial disputes. Family mediation services will ensure the results are satisfactory and fair to everyone involved.
If you have any questions or comments regarding a number of legal issues from family & divorce law, to residential real estate law and mediation, MM Law is here to help.
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