SECTION 9 AND SECOND FAMILIES
Keywords: Custody, Second families, Child Support Guidelines, Household, Childcare
AbstractThis article examines the implications of section 9 of the Federal Child Support Guidelines for second families. The authors consider how underemployment or unemployment has been factored into the assessment of child support. The authors further discuss how increased household costs have been valued, how the courts have dealt with the argument that “free” childcare is being or should be provided in a new relationship, and the relevance of economies of scale created by the establishment of second families. Section 9 invites the courts to take into account the “conditions, means, needs and other circumstances” of spouses and children; the authors analyse cases dealing with increased household income and sharing of expenses where a spouse repartners, as well as the financial obligations of each spouse to the children. The authors conclude by commenting on the fairness of the current treatment of second families under Canadian law.
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