TORONTO'S #1 PRIVATE INVESTIGATION AGENCY
Built on Trust, Expertise & Integrity. Confidential Immediate Results. Knowledge is Power.
Custody battles rarely play out amicably, and more often than not, negotiations are stretched over months, or even years. This can be painful for all parties involved, as each side tries to hold on to one of their greatest assets, their children.
In cases where one parent is assuming primary custody of the children, they are owed child support payments. These payments are calculated based upon the gross annual income of the paying spouse, therefore some parents will attempt to conceal income. Misrepresenting their income can allow them to ultimately pay less than what is rightfully owed to the parent baring the financial, emotional, and physical responsibility of raising the children.
The misrepresentation of income in regard to child support cases has become extremely common during the COVID-19 outbreak, as many will untruthfully claim reduced hours, modified duties, demotions, or loss of employment in an attempt to reduce their declared income level.
Private Investigators are a frequently used resource within family law disputes, particularly when one party suspects that the information put forward in a case, is a far cry from the truth! Private Investigators are instrumental in determining whether information presented as part of the child support hearing is accurate, and further, they can ensure that parties are adhering to the terms set out within the custody agreement. Below, we explore how Private Investigators can be used to ensure that your child support payment is fair, and that any support paid is being utilized as per its intended purpose.
Asset Searches and Income Verification
Typically, as part of determining child support payments owed, the payor must provide detailed information pertaining to their earnings, including pay stubs or statements, income tax returns, any business financial statements, or statements indicating payments from other sources such as employment insurance, workers compensation, or social assistance. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always provide a full picture of all sources of income. Income can be concealed or manipulated in a number of ways, including some of the instances below:
- They are being paid in cash, and are not reporting these earnings
- They are not actively looking for a job
- They are currently “underemployed”, intentionally limiting their level of income by working part-time or in a lower level position
- They have misrepresented their employer
- As a business-owner, they may be claiming fraudulent business expenses, keeping money within their company to limit their personal income amount
Each of these are tactics used by the accused to either limit or avoid paying their child support payments. As the receiving party, should you suspect that you are not receiving what you believe to be fair, you can elect to impute income, which means that you are claiming to the court that your partner earns more than they are claiming, or has the ability to earn more.
A Private Investigator can assist you in disputing your spouse’s claimed income by revealing sources of hidden income, or by uncovering undisclosed physical or liquid assets. This can include concealed real estate, hidden bank accounts…even entire business operations that have been kept under wraps! Asset Searches are a highly effective investigative tool for uncovering anything lurking beneath the surface, particularly when performed by a specialized and experienced Private Investigator.
Verifying that Child Support is Being Spent Fairly
Other than ensuring that the quantity of child support owed is fair, Private Investigators are also involved in helping to monitor whether support payments are being spent fairly, and not squandered on causes unrelated to the wellbeing of the children involved. In cases where it is suspected that the spouse with sole custody of the children is misusing child support funds (instead diverting the money towards frivolous shopping, vacations, plastic surgery, or jewellery for example). A Private Investigator Team will perform covert undercover surveillance and provide confirmation, in the form of concrete proof to reveal an accurate picture of what these support payments are actually paying for. This undeniable evidence – in the form of date and time stamped high resolution photography and video footage, live witness testimony, and written reports – is put towards building a strong case to be used within a court of law when the child support is up for review and renewal.
In Family Law Investigation cases involving child support disputes, the aim of the Private Investigator is to enforce responsibility of both custodial and non-custodial parents, and of course, to better ensure the safety and wellbeing of children involved.
“Our Private Investigation Team in Toronto is highly specialized in the realm of Family Law Investigations, and we’ve seen it all when it comes to parties attempting to conceal their true financial state. If someone is claiming a modest income, driving a modest car and leading what appears to be a modest lifestyle, there is little to question. But when our surveillance reveals that this modest income is supporting a fleet of sports cars and multiple dinners a week at high-end establishments, that’s when we start digging a little deeper. We’ll help you find the HOW, WHEN, and WHERE they’re getting the funds to support this lifestyle, and what they’re withholding from your child support.
Often, over time, financial circumstances will change – perhaps one parent begins living with their new partner, doubling their income. The reality is, MOST PEOPLE DO NOT DISCLOSE THIS CHANGE IN LIVING ARRANGEMENTwhich directly reflects their true financial status, and therefore impacts the amount of child support that they are entitled to. It doesn’t matter who has custody, or whether you’re the payer or the payee – you have to be transparent and true to what you’re making. And if you’re not, our Private Investigator team has the means and expertise to expose the truth, every time.“
Adrianne | Director, Star Quality Private Investigations Toronto
Want to learn more about income verification, surveillance, or person locates as it pertains to child support payments? Talk to our team of Family Law Investigation Experts at Star Quality Private Investigations Toronto, and let us help you safeguard the well-being and financial future of your children.