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Melanie Bowbell
Melanie Bowbell Divorce lawyer

Section 9 Offsetting Incomes refers to a method used in divorce proceedings to calculate child support payments. This section of the Child Support Guidelines takes into account the incomes of both parents when determining the appropriate amount of child support.

Here's a simple explanation of how Section 9 works:

Calculate the Total Child Support Amount: The first step is to determine the base amount of child support that one parent would pay to the other based on their respective incomes. This is usually done using the Child Support Tables, which provide guidelines for the basic child support amount based on the paying parent's income and the number of children.

Offsetting Incomes: Instead of simply exchanging money, Section 9 allows parents to offset their child support payments against each other. This means that if one parent's income is significantly higher than the other's, they might end up paying the difference between their respective child support amounts.

Balancing Contributions: The idea behind offsetting incomes is to ensure that both parents contribute proportionately to the child's financial well-being based on their respective financial capacities. If one parent earns significantly more than the other, the higher-earning parent's support payment might effectively cover both parents' contributions.

Financial Fairness: Offsetting incomes can provide a more balanced and fair approach to child support when there is a substantial income disparity between the parents. It acknowledges that both parents have a role in financially supporting the child, even if one parent's financial resources are significantly greater.

It's important to note that the specific calculation and application of Section 9 can vary based on individual circumstances and the details of the divorce case. If you're going through a divorce and need to determine child support arrangements, it's advisable to consult with a family lawyer or legal expert who can provide personalized guidance based on your situation and Alberta's child support guidelines.

In summary, Section 9 Offsetting Incomes in Alberta's Child Support Guidelines allows parents with different income levels to balance their contributions to child support, ensuring that both parents financially contribute to their child's upbringing according to their respective financial capacities.

Section 7 Child Support refers to the additional financial support that covers special expenses related to raising a child after separation or divorce. These special expenses are typically beyond the basic everyday costs of raising a child and can include things like:

  1. Childcare Costs: This includes expenses related to daycare, babysitting, or after-school care that allows the custodial parent to work or attend school.

  1. Medical and Dental Expenses: This involves costs not covered by insurance, such as orthodontic treatments, prescription medications, or necessary medical equipment.

  1. Educational Expenses: These can include fees for private school, tutoring, or educational programs that benefit the child.

  1. Extracurricular Activities: This covers fees for sports, arts, or other activities that promote the child's development and interests.

  1. Post-Secondary Education: This pertains to costs related to higher education, such as tuition, books, and living expenses if the child pursues further education after high school.

  1. Travel Expenses: If the parents live far apart, costs associated with transportation for visitation purposes might also be considered under Section 7.

It's important to note that not all special expenses are automatically covered under Section 7 Child Support. The determination of whether an expense qualifies depends on factors like the child's needs, the parent's financial situation, and the family's overall circumstances.

When calculating Section 7 Child Support, both parents are expected to contribute to these special expenses in proportion to their incomes. Alberta's child support guidelines provide a framework for determining the appropriate amount that each parent should contribute.

If there are disputes about which expenses should be considered under Section 7 or how the costs should be divided, it's recommended to seek legal advice or mediation to ensure a fair and balanced resolution that benefits the child's well-being.

In summary, Section 7 Child Support in Alberta ensures that both parents share the responsibility of covering additional expenses that are essential for the child's growth, development, and quality of life after a separation or divorce.

melanie bowbell family law
ideal custody schedules for divorced parents

If you're navigating the complex landscape of child custody, you know that finding the right custody schedule is crucial for your child's well-being and peace of mind. Every family's situation is unique, so let's dive into 10 creative custody schedule variations tailored to parents with children between the ages of 0 to 18.

1. The Week-On, Week-Off Schedule: In this arrangement, children spend a week with one parent, then switch to the other parent for the next week. It provides extended time with each parent, which can be especially beneficial for maintaining strong relationships.

2. 2-2-3 Schedule: Here, children alternate spending two days with one parent, two days with the other, and then three days with the first parent. This pattern rotates, allowing parents to share both weekdays and weekends.

3. Nesting Arrangement: In a nesting schedule, children remain in one home while parents take turns living there. This minimizes disruptions to their routine and offers stability during a challenging time of transition.

4. Every Weekend Schedule: In this setup, children live primarily with one parent during the week and spend every weekend with the other. This can work well when one parent has a more flexible work schedule or lives closer to school.

5. Alternating Holidays and Summers: Parents can split major holidays and vacation periods, ensuring that both get quality time with their children during special occasions and the summer break.

6. Split Weeks: Dividing the week into two segments, children spend Monday and Tuesday with one parent, Wednesday and Thursday with the other, and alternate weekends. This maintains consistent contact throughout the week.

7. Customized Workweek Schedule: If one parent works during the week and has more flexibility on weekends, this schedule allocates weekdays to the working parent and weekends to the other parent.

8. Monthly Rotations: Children live with one parent for an entire month, then switch to the other parent for the next month. This can be a great option if parents live far apart, allowing for longer uninterrupted periods of time with each parent.

9. Gradual Transition Schedule: Especially helpful for young children, this schedule starts with shorter visits and gradually extends the time spent with each parent as the child grows more comfortable.

10. Parallel Parenting: In cases of high conflict, this schedule involves minimal direct interaction between parents. Each parent maintains a separate routine with the children to reduce tension and promote stability.

Remember, the best custody schedule is the one that fits your family's unique dynamics and your child's needs. Before finalizing any arrangement, consider factors such as proximity to school, work schedules, the child's age and preferences, and any necessary adjustments as the child grows.

Open communication between parents is key. If possible, consult with a family mediator or lawyer to ensure that your custody agreement adheres to Alberta's legal guidelines and safeguards your child's best interests.

Whatever custody arrangement you choose, always keep your child's well-being at the forefront. Flexibility, empathy, and a willingness to adapt will go a long way in creating a positive co-parenting experience for everyone involved. You've got this! 🌟

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