C-41 and its impact on Intact Families


C-41 has profound and un-researched impacts on intact families. Here are some of the concerns which intact families have:

  1. Any taxes unpaid by separated families must be paid by intact families so that C-41 will inevitably mean higher taxes on intact families.
  2. As separated families gain lower tax advantage, a higher divorce rate will substantially increase the tax liability of the remaining intact families.
  3. Currently judges can force both parents of separated families to fund the education of adult children attending post-secondary institutions, upon application of either parent or the (adult) child. With dropping government support for education, it is feared that before long governments and courts will target intact families for requirements to support adult children who will retain dependency far into adulthood. Intact families will come under increasing financial pressure, often leading to marriage breakdown and divorce.
  4. Family re-unification after divorce will be financially more difficult because of past liability for welfare payments as child support. (see CBC story of Sunday September 29, 1996, which reported the Alberta government forcing an intact family with both parents working, into poverty to repay past welfare.)
  5. C-41 creates and exaggerates an adversarial relationship between men and women, denigrates marriage by making children into a "cash crop" and puts a cash value on both the mother and the father.
  6. Adversarial nature of support and higher expectations of women and increasing inability of men to meet expectations will poison relationships between genders and produce divisive gender warfare.Women will not trust men and men will not trust women. Results: increased divorce rates and growing hostility and suspicion of marriage and intact families.
  7. Effects on second marriages:
    Example: - married couple with 3 kids,
    - family income is $52,000
    - his income is $30,000,
    - her income ( using the media stereotype that her income is 70% of his) $22,000.
    - The intact family has $5,000 in disposable income after taxes, car, house, etc
    - They separate.
    - We try to maintain the standard of living of the children so she spends the same of car, house, etc.
    - So his child support will be $7,000 per year, plus taxes of $7,000 (judges can award amounts above guidelines, in fact many judges, particularly in Alberta, already award support amounts significantly higher than these "guidelines")
    - His net income, after tax and support income is $16,000. Disposable income after housing, basics like food and clothing is zero. The children are in poverty in the time they are with him His after tax income is less than he would get on welfare with three children.

    Suppose he gets remarried:
    - He gets re-married to a widow with income of $18,000 and three kids. Now his new "family income is $48,000 after house and car they have $1,000 in discretionary income. He is no longer poor.But if we try to make the standard of living equal:
    - his child support will rise to $9,500
    - after taxes he and the new family will have zero(or less) discretionary income.

    Thus C-41 discourages re-marriage and puts unbearable stress on second families, disadvantaging their children.
  8. Effects on tax credits of intact families:
    According to Ross Finnie in his article in the Canadian Journal of Public Policy, tax-free income to the non-custodial parent as provided under C-41, will inevitably bring the existing tax credits for children under unbearable pressure from tax-hungry governments. After all, why give a tax credit on un-taxed income? And if tax credits are eliminated for separated families, tax credits associated with child care will be eliminated for intact families also. The result will be a huge new tax burden for families with children and a lowering of the tax burden for those without responsibility for supporting children.

Report prepared by
Single Fathers' Network and FatherCraft Canada,
c/o
73 Eccles Street, Ottawa K1R 6S5
Tel: (613) 238-3208 Fax: (613)238-3491
E-Mail mencan@comnet.ca