What is the test for a variation of a child support order under the Divorce Act?

British Columbia, Canada


The following excerpt is from S. (L.) v. P. (E.), 1999 BCCA 393 (CanLII):

A previous court judgment is assumed to be correct and should be respected unless it is reversed on appeal or varied. In Willick v. Willick, 1994 CanLII 28 (SCC), [1994] 3 S.C.R. 670 at 687-88 Sopinka J. said the following with respect to variation of a maintenance order made under the Divorce Act: Therefore, in a variation proceeding, it must be assumed that, at the time it was made, the original child support order or the previous variation order accurately assessed the needs of the children having regard to the means of the parents. As such, the correctness of the previous order must not be reviewed during the variation proceeding. The previous order will not be departed from lightly and will only be varied if the requirements under s.17(4) of the Divorce Act are properly satisfied.

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