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What is the Child Support Recalculation Program?

The Alberta Child Support Recalculation Program gives divorced parents the ability to alter their child support orders easily, transparently and cost effectively. The recalculation program, or RP, uses current income tax data from the parents to recalculate court ordered child support amounts annually.

The ultimate goal of the program is to ensure that the amount of child support owed by parents reflects their current income. It also helps parents avoid the expense and time required to directly petition the courts for a change.

Before registering with the RP, parents must first have a binding child support agreement or valid court order. Eligibility for the RP is not available for all child support court orders. Therefore, parents may wish to review their situation with a family law lawyer to determine if their court orders are eligible.

As of March 1, 2015, all court-ordered child support decrees in Alberta must show whether they can be recalculated via the RP. This applies to orders issued through the federal Divorce Act and through provincial legislation (like the Family Law Act). Parents who wish to have access to the RP may therefore wish to review their child support order to ensure that appropriate language has been included to ensure their eligibility for recalculation.

The amount of child support owed by an Alberta parent can be a source of disagreement during divorce proceedings. However, with a competent lawyer on one's side, parents can argue to protect their rights regarding how much child support they have the right to receive and/or how much child support they are responsible to pay.

Source: Alberta Justice and Solicitor General, "Child Support Recalculation Program," accessed April 07, 2016

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