Change interjurisdictional spousal or partner support

How to change an order for spousal or partner support if you or the other party lives outside Alberta.

Overview

An Interjurisdictional Support Order (ISO) application can create, change or enforce a support order when the payor or recipient lives outside Alberta.

You can prepare an ISO application if you:

  • were divorced outside Canada
  • were never married
  • were married but a divorce action hasn’t been started
  • aren’t making a first-time application for support
  • haven’t started a divorce action in Alberta

How to change or end an order if you are receiving payments

Step 1. Confirm the other parent’s location

Alberta’s Maintenance Enforcement Program (MEP) has reciprocal registration agreements with enforcement programs in other jurisdictions.

See if the other parent lives in a reciprocating jurisdiction

If your application is going to Ontario, Quebec, Australia or the United States speak with a court forms information coordinator for assistance.

Step 2. Gather your documents

  • complete tax returns from the past 3 years
  • Notice of Assessment – a tax status form – from the past 3 years
  • pay stubs or other proof of income for this tax year

Step 3. Fill out the required forms

If you prefer, you can pick up your forms and guides at a Court forms information coordinator location.

Step 4. Fill out the optional forms

If the respondent didn’t provide their financial information

Form F - Request for Support Order (0.1 MB)

Step 5. Prepare your application

  1. Make sure all your forms are complete.
  2. Include any documents that go with the forms.
  3. Put the forms and their documents, in order, from the first form (eg, Form A) to the last one you used.
  4. Make 3 copies of the forms and documents.
  5. Get the forms and documents sworn. If the respondent lives in:
    • another country, have it sworn before a notary public
    • Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Quebec or the Northwest Territories, have it sworn before a notary public
    • British Columbia, Ontario, Yukon, Nunavut, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, Newfoundland or Labrador, have it sworn before a notary public or commissioner for oaths
  6. Sign the forms when you get them sworn.

Once the package is sworn, don’t add other documents or make changes to it.

Step 6. File your application

File your application, at no charge, at a Court of Queen’s Bench.

How to change an order if you are making payments

Step 1. Confirm the other parent’s location

Alberta’s Maintenance Enforcement Program (MEP) has reciprocal registration agreements with enforcement programs in other jurisdictions.

See if the other parent lives in a reciprocating jurisdiction

If your application is going to Ontario, Quebec, Australia or the United States speak with a court forms information coordinator for assistance.

Step 2. Gather your documents

  • complete tax returns from the past 3 years
  • Notice of Assessment – a tax status form – from the past 3 years
  • pay stubs or other proof of income for this tax year

Step 3. Fill out the required forms

Fill out Form M - Evidence to Support Variation of a Support Order (0.1 MB)

Step 4. Prepare your application

  1. Make sure all your forms are complete.
  2. Include any documents that go with the forms.
  3. Put the forms and their documents, in order, from the first form (eg, Form A) to the last one you used.
  4. Make 3 copies of the forms and documents.
  5. Get the forms and documents sworn. If the respondent lives in:
    • another country – have it sworn before a notary public
    • Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Quebec or the Northwest Territories – have it sworn before a notary public
    • British Columbia, Ontario, Yukon, Nunavut, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, Newfoundland or Labrador – have it sworn before a notary public or commissioner for oaths
  6. Sign the forms when you get them sworn.

Once the package is sworn, don’t add other documents or make changes to it.

Step 5. File your application

File your application, at no charge, at a Court of Queen’s Bench.

After you apply

Wait for the courthouse’s letter. It will state that either your application:

  • is missing information
  • has been sent to Alberta’s Attorney General, who’ll forward it to the reciprocating jurisdiction (this happens within 8 weeks)

If your application is missing information:

  • make the changes
  • have it sworn again
  • file it again at the appropriate courthouse

After you file your application, the respondent will receive a copy of it.

At the court in the reciprocating jurisdiction:

  1. The judge will review all the documents you and the respondent have filed.
  2. The judge may hear sworn evidence from the respondent.
  3. If the judge wants more information, the court will issue a “request for further information” to you and / or the respondent.
  4. The judge will make a decision:
    • confirm your order granted by the Alberta court
    • substitute its own order
    • refuse to confirm your order

Afterwards, the Alberta court will send you a copy of the decision.

Appealing the court’s decision

If you don’t agree with the decision made by the court in the reciprocating jurisdiction, you can appeal the decision or make another application.

Contact Resolution and Court Administration Services for assistance.