Compassionate * Professional * Experienced
The team at Ballantyne Family Law gives clients the information they need to understand their options and the confidence they need to make well-informed decisions. We practice family law exclusively and pride ourselves on providing compassionate, thoughtful, and cost-effective legal representation.
Our Practice Areas
Our team of family lawyers has the knowledge and expertise to assist you with any kind of family law matter, from simple divorces to separations that involve complex parenting or financial issues.
Cohabitation Agreements and Marriage Contracts
Obtain the information you need to understand all of your options and to make informed decisions in case of a separation or divorce.
Work with experienced divorce lawyers who will represent your interests and advocate for you effectively in court or at arbitration.
Child and Spousal Support
What Our Clients Are Saying
Nadine Waldman was my lawyer for what was undeniably the most difficult time of my life. Divorce, in and of itself, is difficult to say the least, but divorcing an abusive husband is highly stressful and I would venture to say torturous. Nadine was by my side the whole time. I trusted her completely to be my voice and look out for my best interests and those of my children. My case took years to resolve and through it all she was steadfast and supportive. I had interviewed quite a few lawyers before I met Nadine Waldman, but she was the only one who really listened. Looking back, I’m so grateful for her time, her efforts, and her patience and understanding. I don’t know how I could have gotten through it all with anyone else representing me.
Frequently Asked Questions
We answered some of the most frequently asked questions. If you have any more questions, feel free to contact us.
Do I have to pay child support? Does my spouse have to pay child support?
It will depend on factors such as your parenting schedule, your income, and your spouse’s income.
If a child lives primarily with one parent, the other parent must pay a fixed amount of child support. Monthly child support is based on the support payor’s annual income. If there is a shared parenting arrangement, child support is usually adjusted so that the children’s lifestyles are comparable in each home.
In addition to fixed monthly child support, which is used to cover the basics such as housing, food, and clothing, both parents are required to contribute to “special and extraordinary expenses,” which may include childcare, medical expenses, extracurricular activities, educational expenses, and post-secondary expenses.
Do I have to pay spousal support? Am I entitled to spousal support?
Both legally married and common law spouses may have a right to spousal support. In Canada, a spousal support recipient must first prove entitlement to support. If there is an entitlement, the “Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines” is usually applied. The quantum and duration of spousal support will depend on various factors, such as whether the parties have children, the length of the marriage, the difference in their incomes, and the roles taken during the marriage.
Is my spouse entitled to share in my pension? Am I entitled to share my spouse’s pension?
If the pension is already in pay, pension payments may be treated as income for the purposes of calculating support. Courts generally try to avoid “double dipping,” so pensions are usually treated as property or income, but not both.
Married spouses may also seek an equalization of Canada Pension Plan credits for the period of the marriage.
Does it matter if I’m legally married to my spouse to be entitled to spousal support or a property claim?
Property claims under common law spouses are more complicated. Common law spouses are not entitled to an equalization of property, but they can make trust claims against their spouses’ property in certain circumstances. The likelihood of success will depend on many factors, such as the length of the relationship, whether the spouse’s finances were commingled, and the spouses’ respective financial and non-financial contributions towards specific property during the relationship.
How are matrimonial homes treated differently than other real estate?
The special treatment of the matrimonial home is one of the main reasons that homeowners enter into marriage agreements. They wish to receive a date of marriage deduction for the future matrimonial home, which they may not otherwise be entitled to.
Another difference is that both parties are entitled to reside in the matrimonial home after separation unless they agree otherwise or if one party is ordered by the court to leave the home. It does not matter who’s on title to the home.
This is one of the few provisions of Ontario legislation that cannot be contracted out of, and clauses in a marriage contract that require one spouse to leave a matrimonial home will not be enforceable.
Do I have to share my inheritance with my spouse? Does my spouse have to share their inheritance with me?
However, if the gift or inheritance goes into a matrimonial home or jointly owned property, it will likely lose its “excluded” character. This can change if there’s a marriage contract that declares otherwise.