The issue of child support usually arises after a separation or divorce. Each Federal State of Canada has its guidelines for child support and other related issues. In some cases, a parent cannot afford the patronage, especially for low income. In such instances, they are exempted from paying child support. Here you can learn about the most common and crucial aspects of child support and how to avoid paying child support in Saskatchewan province.
What is Child Support?
Child Support refers to the financial responsibility of the parents towards their offspring(s) in Canada. Under legal guidelines, only the financial obligation of parents is counted as child support. Other supports like emotional support and moral support do not qualify as child support.
The amount of child support is paid to one parent by another. However, the receiving parent has to spend the money for the child. Only the child is eligible for this financial support and has the legal right to utilize the funds. In few scenarios, both parents have to make a payment for the child support.
One is NOT taxed for receiving child support payment.
Usually, the parent who takes custody of the child receives the payment. A parent has to afford this financial support for a child unto 18 years of age.
Child support calculation in Saskatchewan
The primary theme of child support guidelines remains more or less similar for each province. But you still have to determine the federal guideline applicable to you.
In Saskatchewan, the amount payable is calculated based on the non-residential parent’s income.
Parenting time is not counted as having custody and, therefore, does not impact the amount of child support. Shared custody can influence the amount payable for child support.
The court has the ultimate authority to determine what can be counted a parenting time or shared custody.
Parents Living Outside Saskatchewan
It is not uncommon that a child resides in Saskatchewan territory, and the parents are paying the child support while living in another province. The Inter-jurisdictional Support Orders (ISO) Unit assists the individuals in preparing necessary steps in this case. It also applies when the child is staying in another province. It usually covers:
- Application for child support or changes in child support when the other parent is residing outside of Saskatchewan
- Arranging for registration of applicant’s order or agreement in a different jurisdiction; and
- Communicating and synchronizing with other maintenance enforcement to collect the payment
You have to fill up a form to avail ISO Unit facilities. Since there are different forms, you may need a lawyer to select and fill up the appropriate form. You can also complete the application by yourself. In both cases, none of you do need to be in the court in another jurisdiction.
After you submit the correctly completed application under ISO Unit, the other parent will get a formal notification and a copy of your application.
The Process to Avoid Paying Child Support
Child support is a legal and fundamental right of your child. Still, in some rare cases, the court may grant you immunity to avoid paying child support. It is a moral and social responsibility of the parents to look after an offspring financially. Thus, in most cases, one will NOT get out of paying child support.
If the child is under your custody, you must bear their accommodation cost, daily expenses, and miscellaneous expenditure. In this scenario, you are already performing your duty. So, you are not entitled to any child support. On the other hand, you can demand a child support payment from the other parent.
However, parents sharing equal custody can apply for a review to change the child support amount. In Saskatchewan, accurate specification of the duration of shared custody is crucial. In this case, you can reduce the amount payable for child support.
In the case of undue hardship, you might get out of paying child support partially or totally, depending on the circumstance. Sometimes, the amount for child support noticed under Federal Guidelines becomes undue hardship for a parent or the child, especially when merged with other situations and expenses.
You must submit the following evidence to prove your undue hardship:
- Your circumstance will make it hard to:
- Pay the determined amount; or
- Make up the expenses of the child on the amount of child support you receive
- Your household standard is significantly lower compared to the other partner’s household standard of living.
In addition to these two, the Federal Guidelines exemplify other predictable circumstances that can be counted as undue hardship.
Once your child reaches the age of majority (18 years for Saskatchewan), you are no longer required to pay for that child.
On a different note, based on your divorce agreement, you can be liable to pay the support amount after the 18th birthday of the child. Also, the child might be unable to be financially independent because of illness, disability. The parent still has to patronize the child as long as adequate proof of dependency is submitted to Maintenance Enforcement.
However, if you remarry and have other children, you still have to support all your offspring.
The most effective strategy to avoid paying child support is to communicate with your ex-partner and explain your limitations to meet the demand. If necessary, prepare a written agreement with the other parent. But be honest about your situation. Otherwise, you will make the process of avoiding child support more complex, losing your credentials as a consequence.
Canada Child Benefits
Canada Child Benefit (CCB) is a program monitored by Canada Revenue Agency. CCB helps reduce the financial burden without making you compromise with your child care. Usually, the primarily responsible parent of the child can apply for CCB.
Below are the criteria that determine who is eligible to apply for CCB:
- You have custody of a child under age 18
- You are responsible for the upbringing and wellness of the offspring, primarily
- You are residing in Canada and paying tax
- Either you or your spouse or your common-law partner are supposed to be one of the following:
- A Canadian citizen
- A protected person
- A permanent resident
- A non-permanent resident who has stayed in Canada for the last 18 months and has a valid permit in the following (19th) month
- A native person who is an “Indian” under the Indian Act
Child support is the right of the child and parents’ obligatory duty to provide financial support to their offspring. Unless you are truly incapable of paying child support, do not try to fabricate an excuse to avoid paying child support.