Child and Spousal Support

After a divorce, the parent who doesn't live with the child may be required to pay child support or maintenance. Spousal support or maintenance may be awarded to a spouse in need. Familiarize yourself with how the laws apply to your specific situation.

The resources on this page were hand-picked by the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta staff as a good place to start.

You may also find helpful resources listed under these legal topics: Child support, Spousal support


CPLEA Suggested Resources

Not sure where to begin finding answers to your questions. Get started with our suggested resources. See additional resources below for more information.

CPLEA has created new resources on Family Law in Alberta in partnership with the Edmonton Community Legal Centre. The five booklets in the series provide practical legal information on Child Custody and ParentingFinancial SupportProperty Division, Representing Yourself in Family Court, and Young Parents. The booklets provide information for both married and unmarried couples.  The booklets can be downloaded for free at www.cplea.ca/publications. Select Family Law from the drop down menu.

Related legal topic(s): Child support, Common law relationships, Custody and access, Divorce and separation, Family law general resources, Guardianship and trusteeship, Self-representation

These FAQs are provided by the Canadian Legal FAQs, a website of the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta.

Related legal topic(s): Child support, Custody and access, Divorce and separation

This Alberta government webpage provides information on how to apply to change an agreement or court order for spousal and partner support. You can apply for: an increase, if you’re the recipient of support or a decrease, if you’re the payor of support. Links to the forms required to apply and information on how to complete the forms.

Related legal topic(s): Spousal support

Alberta Resources

This group of programs and services is offered by Alberta Justice in collaboration with the courts of Alberta. This webpage provides general information for those who are representing themselves in a family matter in either Court of Queen's Bench or The Provincial Court of Alberta.

This service is for people who don’t have a lawyer. Use it to:

  • prepare for court
  • navigate your family law matter through the Provincial Court
  • discuss your issues, explore your options and get you referrals
  • get a court order prepared and filed with the Court of Queen’s Bench and then have copies sent to the other party – after a parenting-related hearing
  • review your divorce before its submitted to the Court of Queen’s Bench
Related legal topic(s): Adoption, Custody and access, Divorce and separation, Family law general resources, Self-representation, Spousal support

This Alberta government site provides informtation on how to apply for spousal or partner support if you or the other party lives outside Alberta. An Interjurisdictional Support Order (ISO) application can create, change or enforce a support order when the payor or recipient lives outside Alberta. Did you know you can prepare an ISO application if you: were divorced outside Canada, were never married, were married but a divorce action hasn’t been started, aren’t making a first-time application for support,  and haven’t started a divorce action in Alberta.

Related legal topic(s): Spousal support

How to change an order for child support if the other party lives outside Alberta. Includes information on:

  1. How to change or end an order if you are receiving payments
  2. How to change an order if you are making payments
  3. What happens after you apply and
  4. Appealing the court’s decision
Related legal topic(s): Child support, Legal process

This online resource is from the Student Legal Services, University of Alberta, Edmonton. It includes information for couples who have been married or are adult interdependent partners. Married persons who are seeking child and/or spousal support as part of a divorce application apply under the Canada Divorce Act.  Non-married parents, married persons who are separated but not getting a divorce, and adult interdependent partners (often called “common law partners”, should seek child and/or spousal support under the Alberta Family Law Act. This resource is also available for download as a PDF.

Related legal topic(s): Child support, Spousal support

Child Support Services is a free service through Alberta Works to help parents with limited incomes get child support agreements or court orders. Single parents and parents of blended families in the following programs are automatically eligible for help through Child Support Services: Income Support, Alberta Adult Health Benefit and Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH). From the left-side menu bar, users can access relevant publications and legislation.
Related legal topic(s): Child support, Legislative materials

The kits are a series of plain language resources which include forms and instructions to make applications for parenting, guardianship, contact, enforecement of time with a child, child support, spousal support and other applications under the Family Law Act in Alberta. These booklets and kits are helpful to self represented litigants as they provide not only general information, but also step by step instructions and precedents.

Related legal topic(s): Custody and access, Divorce and separation, Family law general resources, Self-representation, Spousal support

This guide was developed for frontline service providers in Alberta who work with vulnerable individuals. It provides general legal information on Alberta law only.

Related legal topic(s): Custody and access, Divorce and separation, Family law general resources, Family violence general resources, Protective orders, Spousal support

This booklet will give you general information about the law relating to guardianship, parenting, custody, access and contact.and the principles applied by the court when deciding matters relating to the care of children. If your application deals with these issues, you should read this booklet before starting to fill out your court forms. This information is general in nature, and is not intended to be an in-depth discussion of all legal issues relating to children.  

Related legal topic(s): Child support, Family law general resources, Self-representation

The Alberta Maintenance Enforcement Program (MEP) is authorized by the Alberta Maintenance Enforcement Act to ensure that individuals meet their obligations to pay spousal and child support under the terms of their court orders and certain agreements. In cases of default (non-payment) by the debtor, MEP has the legislative authority to take steps to enforce the support owed. These enforcement tools include registrations at Land Titles and the Personal Property Registry, wage, non-wage and federal support deduction notices, federal licence (passport) denials, motor vehicle restrictions and driver's licence suspensions. MEP also has access to a variety of databases to assist in locating a debtor or a debtor's assets or income.
Related legal topic(s): Child support, Spousal support

This information on how to apply for spousal and partner support in Alberta. You can apply for spousal or partner support as long as you have care and control over a child, even if you’re not their parent. Page provides information on getting started, documents needed, what forms to use, how to file a claim,  As well as information on how to file an interjurisdicational Support Order Applications if the other party lives outside Alberta.

Related legal topic(s): Spousal support

This website has guides to separation and divorce for kids, for teens, and for parents. The information in the guides for kids and teens is delivered by drawn characters and the content is spoken and written in easily understood language. For parents, in addition to the guide, there are two online courses, Parenting After Separation, and Parenting After Separation: Finances. The kids' and teens' guides are also available in French.

Note: This website has been created by a British Columbia organization, but, apart from some of the contacts listed, the information presented applies across Canada.

Related legal topic(s): Divorce and separation

Canada/Federal

When a married couple separates or divorces, the spouse with the higher income sometimes pays money to the spouse with the lower income to balance the financial impact of the divorce so that the outcome is fair. This money is called "spousal support". This resource provides basic explanations about spousal support agreements.
Related legal topic(s): Spousal support

The guiding principle of Canada’s child support law is that children should continue to benefit from the financial means of both parents just as they would if the parents were still together. Therefore, if you are divorced or separated from the other parent, you are both responsible for supporting your children financially. This resource provides an explanation about child support orders and agreements.

 

Related legal topic(s): Child support