Manitoba Child Support & Parenting Time Totals

Manitoba child support and parenting time totals

In Manitoba, the amount of child support is figured based on the non-residential parent's income. Parenting time doesn't normally figure into the formula.

The court may deviate from its strict child support guidelines on a case-by-case basis when the non-residential parent's visitation time is greater than 40 percent. Accurate parenting time numbers can directly affect your child support, whether you pay or receive.

Most parenting time totals are estimates (and thus incorrect)

Manitoba attorneys and judges often rely on parenting time estimates only, even if they are incorrect, because counting total hours is tedious and time consuming. Divorcing parents usually rely on these estimates as well.

Using estimates means your parenting time totals can be wrong when compared to your actual parenting time schedule. This means your child support amount will not be fair or exact.

How to calculate parenting time instead of relying on estimates

To calculate parenting time, the easiest and most accurate way is to use software. Without software, you're forced to count each hour for a whole year, which is error-prone when you include alternating holidays, summer break, and any changes to the schedule throughout the year.

The leading parenting time calculation software, Custody X Change, can calculate your parenting time to see if it was estimated incorrectly.

Calculate Your Parenting Time Now

Using software, you can also tweak your schedule to see how even little changes affect your total time, and you can see how your parenting time percentages change each year due to holidays and other events.

You can also track what actually happens, and show how much parenting time you've actually received for any period of time. Historical information is a powerful tool when you request a child support modification or when you request more parenting time.

Fast facts on child custody and child support in Manitoba

Canada's federal government oversees all child support cases in the country. The child support laws for Manitoba are not that different from other provinces, but there are some areas that are specific to Manitoba.

In Manitoba, the laws governing child custody and child support are not very different from the federal laws. The main differences between the federal and provincial regulations center more around procedures, application of policies and adjusting the child support guidelines to the standard of living in Manitoba.

A detailed look at Manitoba's child support guidelines

The Province of Manitoba uses the Family Maintenance Act. This set of laws regulates child custody, visitation and child support as long as the parents and children reside in Manitoba.

The Family Maintenance Act was adopted by the Manitoba provincial government, which passes amendments to the act as needed to keep the information current.

The Family Maintenance Act of Manitoba states in section 2(1) that “In all proceedings under this Act the best interests of the child shall be the paramount consideration of the court.” While the Family Maintenance Act closely reflects the federal laws and regulations, it does reflect conditions that apply specifically to Manitoba.

Common law parents, or parents who have never been legally married, are subject to the laws contained in the Family Maintenance Act. Married couples who are seeking divorce will fall under federal guidelines in processing their divorce.

In Manitoba, 18 is considered the age of majority. This means a child is no longer eligible for child support. Different Canadian provinces set their own ages for this condition.

Finally, just like most of the Canadian provinces and territories, Manitoba does not give a parenting time credit when calculating child support amounts.

Manitoba child support formula and parenting time totals

In Manitoba, the child support formula is different for sole and shared physical custody. However, Manitoba family courts do not give automatic parenting time credit that can reduce your child support amount.

The only way parenting time can influence the amount of child support you receive or pay is when the non-residential parent can show the family court that visitations exceed 40 percent, or 146 overnights. The court may make modifications to your child support on a case-by-case basis.

Although Manitoba courts have developed several different formulas to calculate the amount of child support payable for shared custody, it usually makes child support awards based on a net difference between both parents' incomes.

Why accurate parenting time totals are important in Manitoba

Accurate parenting time percentages are important because Manitoba law requires a different method for calculating sole and shared custody child support amounts. If you use estimates for overnights, you could be relying on the wrong child support formula to calculate child support.

If you can create a parenting plan that accurately presents the number of overnights, or parenting time percentage, you can ensure the calculations will be accurate.

Examples of sole custody and Manitoba child support

Consider the hypothetical case of Robert and Mary. Robert's income is $4,000 per month, while Mary's income is $2,400 per month. They have two children.

See how the child support amounts change in these examples:

  • Scenario #1: Robert is the non-residential parent. According to the Manitoba child support formula, Robert pays $658 in child support each month to Mary.
  • Scenario #2: Mary is the non-residential parent. Mary pays $385 in child support to Robert.
Examples of shared custody and Manitoba child support

Consider the hypothetical case of Robert and Mary. Robert's income is $4,000 per month, while Mary's income is $2,400 per month. They have two children.

Here are some scenarios on how a Manitoba family court might determine child support:

  • Scenario #1: Total monthly child support is set as $658 for Robert and $385 for Mary. The net difference is $273, so this would be the amount that Robert pays each month in child support. This is because Robert is the higher earner.
  • Scenario #2: Their total income per month is $6,400, with Robert earning 63 percent and Mary earning 37 percent. The guidelines suggest that Robert might pay 63 percent of the total child support. In this case, Robert pays 63 percent of $1,043, or $657 per month in child support.
  • Scenario #3: The family court could determine that the amount of child support should be greater or less than either of the previous scenarios and generate a child support amount that fairly represents Robert and Mary's situation.
Manitoba guidelines allow for parenting time exceptions

While the majority of child support awards in Manitoba follow the simple federal or provincial formula, it's possible for a judge to set a different amount that what the child support table reflects as appropriate.

Section 9 of the Manitoba child support guidelines outlines this exception:

9) Where each parent exercises a right access to, or has physical custody or care and control of a child for not less than 40 per cent of the time over the course of a year, the amount of the child support order must be determined by taking into account:
a) the amounts set out in the applicable tables for each of the parents;
b) the increased costs of shared custody arrangements; and
c) the condition, means, needs and other circumstances of each parent and of any child for whom support is sought.

The child support guidelines for Manitoba allow family court judges to consider modifications to child support orders when it can be shown that the non-custodial parent hosts the child at least 40 percent or more of the time.

How accurate child support helps your children

Paying accurate child support helps your children in several ways, primarily because it ensures their financial needs are met.

Here are some other reasons why accurate parenting time percentages help you, the other parent and your children:

  • It provides a fair way to determine your child support amounts
  • It guarantees the child support amount reflects each parent's responsibilities
  • It allows for modifications if your actual time and scheduled time are different
  • It is compliant with Manitoba law

Your financial obligations to your children don't end with divorce, so whether you are paying or receiving child support, you owe it to your children to pay or receive the proper amount.

Top 5 things to remember about Manitoba child support and parenting time

To ensure you are paying or receiving the right amount of child support in Manitoba, remember these 5 things:

  1. The Family Maintenance Act is the set of laws that outline how Manitoba family courts establish child support and child custody issues for resident parents.
  2. The provincial child custody and child support laws differ from the federal laws in several ways, such as adjustments to the child support tables and the methods of enforcement and collection.
  3. Manitoba figures sole custody child support amounts based on one parent's gross monthly income, minus some standard deductions.
  4. Shared custody means that the non-residential parent hosts the children for 146 overnights or more annually. Fewer than 146 overnights leads to sole custody.
  5. Manitoba family courts can make adjustments to a child support amount when there is good supporting evidence that the amount is too low or too high for the children's needs, according to section 9 of the Manitoba Child Support Guidelines.

Use the Custody X Change software to accurately calculate your total parenting time to present to a Manitoba family court.


The leading parenting time calculation software, Custody X Change, can calculate your parenting time to see if it was estimated incorrectly.

Calculate Your Time

The leading parenting time calculation software, Custody X Change, can calculate your parenting time to see if it was estimated incorrectly.

Calculate Your Parenting Time Now