Definitions for support payments
a person, born within or outside marriage, of whom you are the legal parent
a person who is wholly dependent on you for support and of whom you have (or, immediately before the person reached the age of 19, had) the custody and control
a child of your spouse or common-law partner
a spouse or common-law partner of your child
they have been living with you for at least 12 continuous months. This includes any period you were separated for less than 90 days because of a breakdown in the relationship
they are the parent of your child by birth or adoption
they have custody and control of your child (or had custody and control immediately before the child turned 19 years of age) and your child is wholly dependent on that person for support
A court order is a decree, order, or judgment made by a court, such as a family law court or other competent tribunal.
A payer is a person who makes support payments to a recipient under a court order or written agreement.
A payer can be one of the following:
- the recipient's current or former spouse or common-law partner who is living separate and apart from the recipient because of a breakdown in their relationship
- the parent of a child of whom the recipient is a legal parent
- the payer's current or former spouse or common-law partner who is living separate and apart from the payer because of a breakdown in their relationship
- the parent of a child of whom the payer is a legal parent
A child cannot be considered the recipient of support payments for income tax purposes.
You are separated when you have been living apart from your spouse or common-law partner because of a breakdown in the relationship for a period of at least 90 days and you have not reconciled.
Once you have been separated for 90 days (because of a breakdown in the relationship), the effective day of your separation is the date you started living apart.
You are still considered to have a spouse or common-law partner if you were separated involuntarily (not because of a breakdown in your relationship). An involuntary separation could happen when one spouse or common-law partner is living away for work, school, or health reasons, or is incarcerated.
Under a written agreement, a person agrees to make regular payments to support their current or former spouse or common-law partner, children of the relationship, or both. The written agreement should normally be signed and dated by both parties.
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