Quarterback Sneak

Ex-NFL quarterback superstar Troy Aikman is divorced after a 10-year marriage, and just like the many defensive players he faked out en route to three Super Bowl titles, no one saw it coming.

According to TMZ.com, Aikman and his now ex-wife Rhonda were granted an Order for divorce on April 12, 2011. Their separation was public knowledge, and they even released statements regarding their commitment to their two children back in January 2011.

But just how committed, financially speaking, does someone of Mr. Aikman's ilk have to be?

Imagine for a minute that Mr. Aikman and Rhonda were residents of Ontario and Canadian citizens and that their proceedings were started in Ontario.

Calculating child support in Ontario is regulated by the Federal Child Support Guidelines, which enclose a Table that prescribes monthly child support payments, based on the income of the paying spouse and the number of children he or she is responsible for supporting. The range of annual income accounted for on the Table is $8,000.00 to $150,000.00.

For Mr. Aikman, this presents an issue for paying child support, as his annual income, while not as high as it used to be, is likely much more than $150,000.00 annually. He is the lead color commentator for FOX NFL Sunday and is involved in several football-related promotions throughout the year. He is also the principal owner of Direct Development, a commercial retail real estate development company, and a minority owner of the San Diego Padres professional baseball team.

Section 4 of the Federal Child Support Guidelines reads as follows:

Incomes over $150,000

4. Where the income of the spouse against whom a child support order is sought is over $150,000, the amount of a child support order is

(a) the amount determined under section 3; or

(b) if the court considers that amount to be inappropriate,

(i) in respect of the first $150,000 of the spouse's income, the amount set out in the applicable table for the number of children under the age of majority to whom the order relates;

(ii) in respect of the balance of the spouse's income, the amount that the court considers appropriate, having regard to the condition, means, needs and other circumstances of the children who are entitled to support and the financial ability of each spouse to contribute to the support of the children; and

(iii) the amount, if any, determined under section 7.

The Table amount for two children at $150,000.00 annually is $1,992.00 per month. Assuming Mr. Aikman has an annual income of $300,000.00 and the Court considers $1,992.00 to be inappropriate, then the monthly support payment will be increased according to the following formula: $1,992.00 plus 1.16% of income over $150,000.00. Therefore, Mr. Aikman would pay an additional $1,740.00 per month. These figures do not include his contribution towards the special and extraordinary activities of the children such as soccer, dance, or swimming.

Meanwhile, Rhonda recently purchased a $1.5 million home in Texas, so there may be some question as to whether the needs and circumstances of the children truly require money on top of what the Table prescribes. However, the Courts generally stick to the Table formula and therefore prescribe the full Guidelines amount until the paying spouse's annual income gets into the multi-millions.

Spousal support and property in this case could also be interesting, but they are topics for another blog.

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