What are the factors that the Court sees in granting orders for retroactive child support?
A Court may order child support payable for a period preceding the commencement of an Application. The parents’ obligation to support their children in accordance with their incomes is a right of the children independent of any statute or order. To decide if a retroactive child support award is appropriate, a Court will balance fairness to the child, flexibility, and the parents’ interest in certainty. The Court considers factors such as the reason for the delay in making the Application; the conduct of the payor; the child’s present and past circumstances, including need at the time that the change of occurred; and whether the retroactive child support award will cause hardship to the paying parent. There are decisions of the Courts in Ontario stating that the attractive award will be limited to three years passed unless the Court finds blameworthy conduct by the payor spouse.