Once a couple divorce or separate, the amount of money paid by one spouse to the other is known as spousal support.
Usually, the spouse making the higher income pays spousal support to the other spouse with the other income. In spousal support, the gender of the spouses is not relevant.
The Divorce Act outlines the spousal support rules for all married couples who divorce. This Divorce Act is federally regulated and applies across all Canadian provinces.
The Federal Act does not govern common law couples who are not married and married couples who are separating. In these cases, provincial rules apply.
Who is eligible to get spousal support?
Married and common-law couples are eligible to receive and pay spousal support. Spousal support is allowed for unmarried couples who
- Lived together for a minimum of three years
- Should have had some semblance of permanence in their relationship and had a child together