Child Support FAQs

Can I just agree with my spouse on an amount of child support?

Legally you cannot just agree with your spouse on an amount of child support. In Canada, our law says that child support is the right of the child and therefore it cannot be given away by a parent. Child support must be paid in the amount stated by the Child Support Guidelines.

If a lesser amount is being paid then the support payor must prove that they are supporting the child in an alternative way which is acceptable to the court and both parties (i.e. paying private school tuition or a residency fee).

Practically, there is very little oversight over what happens between separated couples “behind closed doors”. If nobody complains about an improper amount of child support being paid then most likely nobody will do anything about it. However, keep in mind that the court will not grant separated couples a divorce unless both parties swear to the court that there are proper child support arrangements in place. It is considered “perjury” which is a crime to lie to the court knowingly.

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About the author

Russell Alexander

Russell Alexander is the founder of Russell Alexander Collaborative Family Lawyers and is the firm’s senior partner. At Russell Alexander, our focus is exclusively family law, offering pre-separation legal advice and assisting clients with family related issues, including: custody and access, separation agreements, child and spousal support, division of family property, paternity disputes, and enforcement of court orders. We have locations in Toronto, Markham, Whitby (Brooklin), Lindsay, and Peterborough.

For more information, visit our website, or you can call us at: 905-655-6335.