Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs: No Spousal Support Needed

According to TMZ, Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs have "made it clear in the divorce settlement... they're both so loaded they can live nicely on their own". TMZ further reports that each party has enough income and earning capacity that spousal support is irrelevant.

In Ontario, many family law practitioners would agree that entitlement to spousal support is one of the most fluid areas in family law. Before a Court considers the quantum and duration of support that must be paid, entitlement to support must be positively determined. Section 15.2(6) of the Divorce Act sets out the objectives of a spousal support order. The case law supports the notion that a Court shall consider the following four main principles:

  • clean break principle;
  • personal autonomy and choice principle;
  • need based principle; and
  • the compensatory principle.

Furthermore, entitlement to spousal support is highly discretionary. In the case of Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs, if the parties were resident in Ontario, the Court may come to the conclusion that neither party can satisfy the Court that they ought to be entitled to spousal support. The Court may come to such a conclusion because neither party requires such support to continue the lifestyle they are accustomed to throughout their marriage. Further, a Court may also conclude that neither party was economically disadvantaged from the marriage or its breakdown.

If a Court were to conclude that neither party is entitled to spousal support, the Court would not proceed to contemplating the quantum and duration of such support. Given the above, it is reasonable that Idina and Taye appeared to have agreed in their divorce settlement that neither should request spousal support.

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