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Full Disclosure: Determining Spousal Income
Spousal income determination is a vital part for deciding spousal support. Since support is based on need and ability to pay, both of you must provide detailed financial information to each other consisting of all of your income, expenses, assets and debts.
If you are unable to come to an agreement and end up in court, you will need to provide full disclosure to the court. If at any point the court discovers that either side was not fully honest and forthcoming during negotiations, the consequences could be severe and could include financial penalties.
The lawyers at Ganapathi Law Group can help you determine what information you must share and make sure that you are not penalized for inadvertently failing to provide full disclosure. Give us a call today at our Vancouver office to discuss your particular situation.
In some circumstances, the court will “impute” income. This means that it will declare a certain amount to be that partner’s income, and base support calculations on that amount. This can happen, for example, if one party has refused to report all of their income or has hidden assets.
Changes In Spousal Support
If there are drastic changes in life circumstances — including raises, jobs gained or lost, partners gained or lost — you can apply to change the amount of support. You can also apply change if there was manipulation involved in the negotiations, or the agreement is “significantly unfair.”
An application to change spousal support is often costly and time-consuming. It’s not to be pursued on a whim.
If it’s found that a support amount is lower than it should have been, the paying partner may be asked to pay arrears. The British Columbia Family Maintenance Enforcement Program can enforce payments and arrears.
It may take a long time to get to trial and determine an agreement for support. Often, the lower income partner will ask for interim support before his or her court appearance. If it’s likely that support will be granted at trial, the court will usually grant interim support in the meantime.