How To Apply For Child Support Variance In Ontario

Everyone’s circumstances change with time. The amount of child support that you and your ex-spouse agreed to (or the amount that was ordered by a court) at the time of your separation will not necessarily remain appropriate for ever.  Children get older and go away to school, get new hobbies or decide to live primarily with one parent rather than moving back and forth regularly.  Parents may get a higher paying job, lose a job or retire.

Whatever your concerns about your child support agreement or order, our Richmond Hill family lawyers can help. Contact us to learn more about how to apply for child support variance in Ontario.

Vary child support by agreement

If you and your ex-spouse agree with respect to whatever changes need to be made to your current agreement or child support order, then you can make a new agreement.  An agreement that is signed by both parents and a witness can be filed with the court so that the Family Responsibility Office can enforce it if necessary.

If your current child support is found in a court order, then you can ask the court to change the order based on your new agreement. In either situation we recommend you consult with a family lawyer for legal assistance to ensure your rights and best interests are protected.

Vary the amount of child support online 

If you originally agreed to pay or received child support through the online Child Support Service, you can use the service to recalculate the appropriate amount of child support.

The online service cannot be used by parents with children who live in a shared custody or split custody arrangement.  It also cannot be used by parents where calculating the income of the paying parent is overly complicated.  For example, where the paying parent is self-employed or earns seasonal income, the parents cannot use the service.

In order to apply for a recalculation, one parent applies online. Either the paying parent or the receiving parent can make the application.  The service sends a notice to the other parent, who then has 25 days to object to any of the information provided in the application.  If no objection is made, the service will issue a Notice of Recalculation, which can be enforced as though it were a court order.

Apply to the court for a variance

If you are unable to agree with respect to a new amount of child support, or whether child support continues to be payable at all, then you must apply to the court to make a decision for you.

The court will only vary a child support order or agreement without the agreement of both parents when there has been a significant change in circumstances.  In order to apply to the court to update your child support order, you must file the correct forms with a family court and have them served on the other parent as set out in the rules. The other parent will then have an opportunity to respond to your application before the court makes a decision.

Contact our Richmond Hill family law lawyers today to learn how to apply for child support variance in Ontario in your circumstances.

Legal Disclaimer: Please note the content in this article is only intended to act as a general overview on a legal topic and does not constitute legal advice. For specific legal advice on this topic we recommend you consult with a real estate lawyer.