What is the case law on the basis of a mother’s argument that a child is entitled to a reduction in the amount of child support if she stops working?

New Brunswick, Canada


The following excerpt is from K.B. v. M.A., 2019 NBQB 90 (CanLII):

The mother’s argument rests on a solid foundation in law, for "the fundamental obligation of a parent to support his or her children takes precedence over the parent's own interests and choices" (Duffy v. Duffy 2009 NLCA 48 at para. 35). Nonetheless, it cannot be simply assumed that any choice made by a payor that has the effect of reducing earning capacity, temporarily or otherwise, would be unreasonable. It comes down to perspective – did the parent “act responsibly when making financial decisions that may affect the level of child support available from that parent” (Duffy v. Duffy, infra at para. 35), which can be informed by the following: A parent will not be excused from his or her child support obligations in furtherance of unrealistic or unproductive career aspirations or interests. Nor will it be acceptable for a parent to choose to work for future rewards to the detriment of the present needs of his or her children, unless the parent establishes the reasonableness of his or her course of action. (Ibid at para. 35)

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