Section 7 expenses

The Maintenance Enforcement Program (MEP) has changed how it enforces some types of section 7 expenses.

This May 16, 2016 change was made in response to:

  • feedback from the courts and the legal profession
  • concerns raised by clients about how MEP was administering their section 7 expenses

We apologize for the delay that some of you may have experienced while we reviewed our policy on section 7 expenses.

Watch our short Section 7 Expenses videos

No changes for specific expenses

MEP will continue to enforce section 7 expenses where the court order or agreement clearly states that either:

  • a party is to pay a fixed dollar amount for expenses (eg, “must pay $50 per month for Section 7 expenses”)
  • both parties are to pay a percentage or proportionate share of expenses, and the order specifies what expenses are payable (eg, “must pay 50% of expenses for daycare, piano lessons and orthodontic treatment”)

Examples of specific expenses

  • child care – if the order says “child care” without further information, MEP will enforce any child care expenses arising from the custodial parent’s employment, illness, disability or education or training for employment, for as long as the expenses continue to be incurred (eg “must pay 50% of daycare expenses”)
  • health-related or medical – any specific expenses listed in the court order (eg, “must pay 50% of orthodontic treatment, prescription drugs, glasses and contact lenses”)
  • post-secondary education – any specific expenses listed in the court order (eg, “must pay 50% of university tuition, room and board, and student union fees.”); if the order only says “post-secondary expenses” without further detail, MEP will only enforce for tuition and required text books
  • extracurricular activities – any specific activities and expenses listed in the court order (eg, “must pay 50% of hockey, ballet, Girl Guides, piano lessons, soccer, art class”); if the order names an activity without more detail, MEP will enforce any expense related to that activity
  • primary / secondary school or educational – any specific activity or expense named in the court order (eg, “must pay 50% of tutoring and field trips”)
  • medical and dental insurance premiums for the child

Changes for non-specific expenses

Without further direction, MEP cannot enforce section 7 expenses where the court order or agreement:

  • requires the parties to pay a percentage or proportionate share of expenses
  • doesn’t clearly state which expenses are to be shared (eg, “must pay 50% of section 7 expenses”)

Affected claims

This policy change doesn’t apply to section 7 expenses that were added to a MEP file prior to March 14, 2016.

Follow these guidelines:

If you’re impacted by the change

Examples of non-specific expenses

  • health-related or medical – without further details about the types of expenses
  • post-secondary education – MEP will only enforce expenses for tuition and books, unless the order clearly provides for other expenses
  • section 7 expenses – without further details
  • primary / secondary school or educational – unless specific expenses are listed in the order
  • extracurricular activities – without stating any specific activities
  • additional expenses – without further details

If you’re impacted by the change

You and the other party can either:

  • agree between yourselves and then clearly state what child-related expenses should be shared in the new Section 7 Expenses Agreement Form
  • have your court order changed to clarify your section 7 expenses

If you and the other party can agree, follow these steps to submit your outstanding expenses:

Step 1. Fill out the Agreement form

Section 7 Expenses Agreement form

To reduce the processing time of your form:

  • clearly state your shared expenses
  • make sure you and the other party agree on how the form is filled-out
  • you and the other party should sign, date and initial the form

Step 2. Submit the Agreement form

By mail

Maintenance Enforcement Program
Family Support Order Services (FSOS)
7th Floor John E. Brownlee Building
10365 - 97 Street
Edmonton, AB T5J 3W7

By fax

780-401-7575

Note: One party may complete the form and submit it to MEP. After we receive the form, we’ll forward it to the other party. This approach greatly delays the form’s processing time.

Step 3. Fill out the Report form

You can only claim expenses that you paid for within the last year; expenses paid over one year ago won’t be accepted.

Section 7 Expenses Report form

For help understanding how to submit Section 7 Expenses to MEP, watch our short videos.

Step 4. Submit the Report form

Do this after you’ve receive confirmation from MEP that your:

  • agreement form has been processed
  • expenses have been added for enforcement

By mail

Maintenance Enforcement Program
Family Support Order Services (FSOS)
7th Floor John E. Brownlee Building
10365 - 97 Street
Edmonton, AB T5J 3W7

By fax

780-401-7575

If your expenses aren’t enforced

If we cannot add your expense claims to your file – as a result of the policy change – we’ll return them to you.

We’ll review these expenses again if you send us either:

  • an updated Section 7 Expenses Agreement Form
  • a new court order that clearly states the expenses


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