Dobrovolsky v Dobrovolsky, 2021 ABQB 62, is an excellent case that serves as a primer on spousal support, matrimonial property, and dissipation in a long-term marriage.
The long-standing principle established in the Family Property Act, RSA 2000 F-4.7, (“FPA”), is that marriage is an economic partnership and marital assets should be divided equally amongst the parties. Albeit this is an oversimplified explanation as there are other factors that must be accounted for, including exemptions and considerations for the types of property. This principle formed the basis of the Honourable Madam Justice Kiss’ decision, which is reinforced by the leading case Jensen v Jensen, 2009 ABCA 272.
Justice Kiss’ eloquent summary of the leading cases, legislation, and legal principles in this decision lead to her ultimate findings, as follows:
a. the Wife was entitled to both compensatory and non-compensatory spousal support – granting retroactive spousal support in the amount of $90,000.00;
b. the Husband was found to have been in breach of previous Court Orders and directed to pay $200,000.00 to the Wife to account for same;
c. the Schedule A, attached to the decision, summarized the division of matrimonial property; and
d. the Husband was directed to make an equalization payment to the Wife in the amount of $2,971,299.50.
It is well worth the read and family lawyers should add this case to their precedent library.
The full case can be found on CanLii here: https://canlii.ca/t/jcs4b
Ronald S. Foster, Q.C.
Family Law Solutions
Foster Dickson O’Brien
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Calgary Alberta T2P 3N9
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