Thursday, February 28, 2008

Custody and child support

I have full custody of my kids, legal and physical custody. I have this because my children were both under a year old when I was divorced. Both of my exes pay child support based on their income at the time of the divorce. Both have had increases in child support due to the cost of living going up. Usually about $11.00 per month every other year. I am grateful for the support they pay and have never asked that their income be checked to see if it has increased. I know it has increased substantially for both. Of course my income has increased as well since I was not working at the time of either divorce. I feel the amount they both pay is fair. There is no way I could live off of the child support alone. I have to earn 4 times what I receive in child support to live.

The laws are changing in my state to now consider both parents' income when determining the amount of child support. Also considered is how much time is spent with each parent. If, for example, the children spend 50% of their time with one parent and 50% of their time with the other then child support should be a moot point and eliminated. This is how it is supposed to go.

I know of one couple that does not have child support. They split the time with the kids and pay for what they need when the kids are with them. They also split all other expenses. Theirs was not an amicable divorce but they have managed to be fair to one another in the financial aspect of their divorce. This practically eliminates all arguments between them.

I know of another couple who also split the time 50/50 but yet the father still pays a substantial portion of his income each month to his ex wife. Theirs was also not an amicable split and they have not been able to agree on anything since the breakdown of their marriage. If they do communicate it is negative.

All other couples I know fall somewhere in between. Except for the one couple above no one is ever happy with the arrangement. Everyone seems to think that they were treated unfairly. There must be a better way to support the children. I don't know the answer but money is such a hot button in most marriages and divorces.

One of the problems for instance is that in my son's school I was the responsible party. The bill was in my name and if it wasn't paid it was reported on my credit history. This is also the case for all medical bills. My ex, very generously, paid for all school. He wanted our son to attend a private school and since I could not afford it and he could he paid for it. He did not have to do this and I am lucky to have such a great ex and my son is lucky to have a dad who thinks that his education is the most important thing. There were a few times when the payment was late and the school would call me. They knew of the arrangement but because I had full custody they called me. I would then call my ex. It wasn't a problem and happened infrequently but surely it would have been more efficient to call him themselves. I should say the payment was made directly to the school and did not go through me.

I'm interested in any ideas anyone might have out there about a better way to handle this issue.

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2 Comments:

Blogger sam sherin said...

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July 9, 2009 at 4:28 AM  
Blogger freelanceronfly84 said...

I salute you for being a responsible and superwoman "single mom"! cheers!

-Cha
PA and NJ Uncontested Divorce

August 7, 2010 at 7:47 AM  

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