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Lecture

LS101 Lecture Notes - Desertion


Department
Legal Studies
Course Code
LS101
Professor
Frances Chapman

Page:
of 4
LS101 – Nov.28 28/11/2007 21:04:00
- women and children experience a 73% decline in their standard of
living in the year after divorce, while men’s standard of living actually
increases
- system of enforcement is quite lacking – many people are able to get
away without paying their court ordered amount or hide how much they are
earning
Spousal Support
History
Ecclesiastical law – alimony, common-law as a right that women
only could exercise over their husbands after separation
Prior to 1978, wives (only) had the right to apply through the
Deserted Wives’ and Children’s Maintenance Act – and had to show
that there was desertion by her husband and a failure to maintain
her (as a result of his cruelty or adultery)
oAdultery by wife was absolute defence to paying spousal
support
Alimony was payable only in cases in which it was proved that:
oThe parties had a valid marriage
oThe parties were living separate and apart; and
oThe husband was guilty of adultery, cruelty or desertion. The
wife had to prove that her husband was at fault in this way
Desertion defined as living separate and apart from your wife
without sufficient cause (found to include adultery, desertion or
cruelty done to the husband)
Cruelty
Desertion
Chastity Clause
Alimony was abolished in 1978 and was replaced with the concept
of spousal support that we still have today
oGender neutral – either spouse can receive spousal support
oTwo main acts – Family Law Act and Divorce Act
M. v. H. (1999)
oCohabit means to live together in a conjugal relationship
inside or outside of marriage
Pre-nuptual agreement = marriage agreement in Canada
Spousal Support Under The Federal Divorce Act
The Divorce Act – order should
oRecognize any economics disadvantages to the spouses
arising from the marriage or its breakdown
oApportion between the spouses any financial consequences
arising from the care of any child of the marriage
oIn so far as is practicable, promote the economic self-
sufficiency of each spouse within a reasonable period of time
Moge v. Moge
oMrs.Moge cared for the children over 20 years – long marriage
o*textbook case
28/11/2007 21:04:00