Advice Needed for DP in dealing with Child Support. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 04-17-2011, 03:22 PM - Thread Starter
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My DP ex wife has graduated,and is now a RN she works crazy hours.He has there kids most days of the week.When she works night's she has there kids stay over during thoughs days,yet they stay day ,and night for 3 days then she picks them up on the day before she has a day off.So he usually has them for 3-4 days.Then when she works days she will bring them over at like 5-6 AM.So lately I have told him to just have them sleep over due to the fact,that I don't think a kids should be waking up that early.The 3 year old is usually cranky during the days he has been woke up early.She usually just has them one or 2 days a week for herself,and the weekends.Last week he had them that whole week.We love the kids so we are fine with that.Yet it is hard with me me being pregnant,and dealing with his two and my two.Although at the end of the day it is rewarding.


Now when this first started she told my DP that she would drop child support,but he had to buy them there own clothing.He did that.Well she backed out of dropping the child support after she started working days (funny thing is she has nights this week).He is paying for preschool for the older child.He pays close to 600 dollars in child support a month for them.And she has the nerve to tell him that now that the kids have medical through her that he might be paying more.Since I am pregnant,he likes to go to DR appt's with me.Well she has controled that,and thretened to put the younger one back in daycare if he has appt all the time.She says they are excuses.


He does not work.He was injured in accident years ago,and lives off of the money from that,and he is not getting disability at this time.He does put his all into raising there kids with love,and compasion.He buys them stuff all the time,and has a fridge full of healthy food.Yet he is struggling monthly to make ends meet.


So what are his rights here?She has the chunck of custody,yet my DP has there children all the time.He is writing dates,down and stuff to take to lawyer.I have told him to talk to her yet he is scared of her using his past use of MJ against him when they were together. (he does not do it anymore but still scares him) 


Any advice,any thing else he should do?Something he should bring up to his lawyer,or her?


Thank You.

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#2 of 7 Old 04-17-2011, 07:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Can anyone offer a word of advice please?

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#3 of 7 Old 04-17-2011, 07:36 PM
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Your post is a little confusing but it sounds like you are saying the kids are with.each of you about half the time. I seriously doubt she will get any mileage with old mj accusations. I would go back to court and ask for 50/50 and a support reevaluation but it also sounds like you're overwhelmed so if you don't want the kids there half time you should speak up now and let their mom find childcare. In either case get support evaluated.
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#4 of 7 Old 04-18-2011, 05:56 AM
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You need to look up the laws/guidelines in your state.  They should be available online, for free.  Here, for example, we can search for "Indiana Child Support Guidelines".  You might try a similar search.


In MY state, if a divorced couple already has court orders in place; if at least a year has passed since the most recent child support order was issued; and if there has been a substantial change in circumstances, either party can pursue a child support adjustment through the child support collection office, without going to court.  In some jurisdictions, child support is a straight calculation of who makes what, how much time the kids spend with each parent, who pays what for childcare/health insurance, etc.  In such a case, your DP might be able to adjust things so his ex pays C/S to him, just based on all of those facts.  However, it may be necessary for him to petition for an official change of custody - to reflect that the kids now spend the majority of their time with him - in order to reverse the flow of child support.  That would involve going to court.  You need to read the laws, to know.   


If you (of course, I really mean HE) wind(s) up in court, it's certainly safest to use a lawyer.  In fact, if he already has a lawyer representing him, he must file something with the court officially terminating that representation, in order to represent himself.  And it's possible his attorney or the judge might give him flack about that, if he still owes his lawyer money.  


But if you can't afford to use an attorney, more and more people are representing themselves in court.  It is possible, especially when the facts are not in dispute.  So, if your DP's ex will acknowledge how much time the kids spend with you guys; and everyone agrees how much everyone else makes, then you're really just asking the judge to decide what's reasonable and sanctify it with a new order.  But if she claims the kids are with her 5 days a week, then you guys would have to subpoena her work records; and people to testify about her hours; and then put her on the stand to ask, "How can you claim the kids are with you this much, if you're working these hours?"  In that case, you're really better off with professional representation.


But overall, this sounds like an issue that's on the easy side, compared to other things people fight about in family court.  It's all pretty objective.  If she works for a hospital, there are records that show how much she makes.  There should be paperwork showing how much your DP lives on.  A judge may be willing to accept that he's not capable of working; or, worst case scenario, a judge might calculate C/S crediting your DP with having the potential to earn minimum wage.  But even so, if his ex out-earns him; he pays for childcare (and there should also be records to substantiate that); and he directly provides for the kids' needs a clear majority of the time, it should be fairly simple for a judge to conclude that she should be the payor now, not him.


If your DP's going to pursue this, he should also check into health insurance.  (If you mentioned it in your post, I didn't catch it.)  If she works in a medical field, she likely has access to coverage for the kids.  The court might order her to provide it and a National Medical Support Notice could be sent to her employer.  Payment for the kids' policy would be withheld from her paycheck, eliminating the possibility that she'd terminate insurance one month because she was mad at your DP, or just having trouble covering her bills.  Of course, what she paid for the kids' policy would be credited to her, in the C/S calculation.  But, your DP is mainly looking to reduce how much he pays her, not so much to have her pay him as much as he can get, right?  And if health insurance for the kids is an option now (perhaps it wasn't, when he was unemployed and she was a student), it's responsible to try to make sure they have it.


Your DP's ex will likely feel very threatened by all of this.  Understand, from her perspective, your DP will be "trying to take her kids away from her"; trying to take away income she has come to expect; and trying to make HER pay things she will feel she can't afford.  It may be valuable for him to try to talk with her in a civil and compassionate way - BEFORE she gets served with court papers - and explain that he doesn't want the kids to spend any less time with her than they are; he doesn't see her as being any less important to the kids than she always has been; he just needs their financial arrangements to start reflecting the changes in their schedules, because he's really struggling.  She may not be receptive or respond well to this, now.  But if your DP handles this as kindly as possible, instead of just blindsiding her with a Petition for Modification of Custody, later she may be able to realize that he wasn't trying to "screw" her; that it really wasn't reasonable to expect him to keep paying the same amount, after the kids started spending so much more time with him.      

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#5 of 7 Old 04-18-2011, 07:15 AM
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You can request a modification of existing child support orders based on a change in custody. Present how much time the kids are actually with you and then both parties will need to disclose their current financial positions.

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#6 of 7 Old 04-18-2011, 07:49 AM - Thread Starter
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Sorry everyone if my first post was all over the place.Hard to get on the net with kids running around.He has a good lawyer.He is writing everything down.She is a good mom,and nice lady just puts work first you could say.He just thinks its unfair that he is paying for everything well most everything,while having the kids most days Monday-Thursday,and a day Friday.Then she just has them on the weekends.He is ok paying her something but to the excess of 600 a month while he has them most of the time do to her work schedual has him kinda confused.Do to his injury he can't work,and has DR'S to back im up on that.So he basically lives off the settelment money he got years ago.


He would be ok not even getting any money from her,he just thinks the CS payments are a little high with all the time he has them.He used to have them 2 days a week then every other weekend.That was what he was paying then,and it should change now that he has them all the time.


Thank you for the advice.

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#7 of 7 Old 04-18-2011, 06:12 PM
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Sounds like your DP is already doing all the right things, documenting when he has the kids, talking to his lawyer. Being very calm and kind about it all with his ex is also a great advice. Of COURSE she'll be angry - he is at home with the kids while she is working her tail off! I'm sure she'd love to have a settlement to live off of and not have to work! But hopefully she will get past that in time, because she knows deep down that he is a good Dad and the kids are better off with him than in daycare, and she doesn't truly wish to have whatever disability your husband has to live with. 


Or, she'll change things entirely the second she gets wind of this, go right back to the original parenting time, get childcare, and NEVER EVER EVER offer your DP time with the kids that isn't court-ordered. That is a possibility he needs to deal with. 

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