Kougioumitzidis v. Fontana – Consultation Regarding Section 7 Expenses
Kougioumitzidis v. Fontana is a 2007 decision of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. This case deals with imputing income to the payor of Child Support as well as the consultation process involved in incurring section 7 expenses. In this case, the Court examined all of the father’s sources of income, including all of his employment benefits. Such employment benefits included the use of a car, including insurance and gasoline allowance, as well as the opportunity to write off personal expenses through the business. While this information was evidence of what the father actually earned on an annual basis, the mother adduced no similar evidence showing that the father lived a lifestyle that exceeded his income. Had the mother been able to prove this fact, this would have been a platform from which the Court could impute a greater income to him. As such, this case illustrates the importance of sufficient evidence when attempting to impute additional income to the payor spouse.
In terms of the issue of section 7 expenses, the mother had enrolled the children in a Montessori School and sought reimbursement from the father for his proportionate share of this expense. The Court found that the mother made this decision unilaterally and without consultation with father. Additionally, there was a previous Court Order in the matter requiring any party seeking to incur section 7 expenses to bring a Motion in this regard. Based on the foregoing, the Court absolved the father of any responsibility for the Montessori School tuition. This case illustrates the need for the party seeking to incur a section 7 expense to give the other parent reasonable notice of the said expense, as well as an opportunity to agree or disagree with same. Parties’ who fail to do this risk bearing the cost of the expense in its entirety.