Nymh's picture

Child Support Question - Paying Too Much

I have a question. My BF, according to the calculations of the court and lawyers, is obligated to pay a certain amount of child support (of course, we all are). His divorce was a very stressful time for him and he threw everything he could in to try to get it over with and her to sign the papers as soon as possible. One of the things that he included was paying about three times as much child support per month than he was originally supposed to.

We just can't afford this payment. Not only is it far too high to be considered reasonable, it's just not possible. On top of that, she had it stuck in there that he has to pay an extra amount per month to make up for the months that they were seperated before the divorce. I personally find this ridiculous to begin with because BF gave her money on occasion before their divorce but they had been seperated for years and she managed to pay all the bills and raise the child just fine on her own and without this ridiculous monthly payment.

What can I do to try to get this payment reduced? Does the fact that he originally agreed to pay this absurd amount make him ineligible for a decrease?

Candice's picture

Hire an attorney or...

contact your state's registry for a review. In WA state, dshs manages cs calculations and garnishs paycheck for all employees that are obligated for cs. And from my understanding...no, just b/c your bf orginally agreed to this amount doesn't mean he is obligated for life.

I think the best bet is for an attorney to review his divorce papers to determine what was actually agreed upon. Unless he agreed to alimony...than the extra money he agreed to pay can be changed. And cs is based on a calculation of both incomes of bioparents and how many additional child they are obligated to support, not what parents want, and it is subject to change for certain reasons.

If your state doesn't have a registry or an agency like WA, then contact local district attorney's office (child support enforcement office), and see if they help review and re-establish cs orders, and if they don't they can point you in the right direction.

Good luck...

justafew's picture

What if they were never

What if they were never married? So then there are no divorce papers. This is really confusing, can you explain it more to me?

My fiance is paying more then 50% of his montly income for child support... He's new to this and so am I.

new evil stepmom's picture

does anyone know about this one?

I have a few questions on child support in WI.

If a father pays 17% of his income, is it just 17% of his 40 hours per week or do they take it from overtime too?

If the father is laid off, is the 17% then taken from the unemployment benefits?

In WI unemployment is only $350/week, so his child support payment would only be $59.50/week?

SM#1's picture

Overtime is included

My H works mandatory overtime...it is included. They ask the employer what the average overtime is, and how much it is (time and a half).

If the father is laid off you have to put in for a change in circumstances. They may or may not change his total due for CS....depends on the jusge. He may want to get a letter from the employer on an estimated time frame. Believe me they have no problem taking most of the unemployment income. My H was payng 50% of his unemployment check for CS for over 1 year! This was before I had meet him, I would have fought it.

Catlover's picture

I'm in WI

CS is taken out of total income in WI (base, commission, overtime, etc). If your DH get's laid off, then he will have the 17% of the unemployment. Be careful here though, as sometimes the court will base CS on DH's capable income if the BM requests it(what he could be earning), and anything that he's not paying out of unemployment may put him into owing the extra in arrears.

"Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean people aren't out to get me"

"Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean people aren't out to get me"

Anonymous's picture

Me and my husband have 3

Me and my husband have 3 children together and he has 2 children from a previous relationship. They were never married, I don't know if this makes a difference. But he got laid off from his job and has to pay child support out of his unemployment benefits. His gross is only 324.00 a week and child support is 135.11 leaving us with 188.89 a week. I am not working, my children are too young and I also home school. His childrens mother is married and she has been working full time for the last 2 years and her husband has a job working for general motors in michigan. Her income alone, is more than my husband's unemployment check. She also has 2 other children and her husband has 1. A total of 5 children in their household. We just recently moved from Michigan and relocated to Tennessee, He is trying to land him a good job where this payment would not be an issue. In the mean time, our entire income tax was taken because he had gotten behind a few months last year. Their should have been something left over from our income taxes but their was nothing. He even got another bill in the mail with payment coupons for an $8,000.00 commitment for 378.00 a month. I have no idea who contact for this. It looks like a mistake. Maybe one of her other children were billed to him. How do I get this information to find out what this $8,000.00 is for and how can we lower these payments, being that we just relocated to another state? Someone please help, he will not even contact the friend of court, every time he would contact them in the past they would say he's not paying enough or it will cost him court fees if he wants to lower his payment. It seems as if he has given up and accepted this and I am not sure if they will speak with me because I am the wife.HELP

Little Jo's picture

Oh, Oh, I'm doing this right now !!!

My BF did the exact same thing. The bitch would get the divorce unless he paid more than the law allows. That was in September. Bm & BF agreed that by law, child support amount would get adjusted annually at tax time.

Well two weeks ago BF pulled the plug on the additional 100 a week. She got super pissy about it and the last 2 weeks has given him reciepts saying, 250 of the 350 court ordered amount. Screw that.
So I called the court house and got the proper forms in the mail today that we need to fill out and file. No Cost. No lawyer needed.

The law is the law as described by the child support act. It's a simple formula.

I hate that some of these bitches that think 'HE' has to pay through the nose because 'HE' woke up and smelted the rot that eminates from 'their' exsistance.

Call the local family court house in the County the children reside in.

Keep us posted. Jo

"May the forces of evil get confused on the way to your house." George Carlin

step_mom34's picture

i completely agree


It is so nice to hear someone else say exactly what I have been thinking for the last several years. These ex-wives who expect the world handed to them on a silver platter from their ex husbands give women a bad name.We are all grown adults and women can do as much as men, so why not go out and earn the money themselves? All this "you owe me" crap is enough to make me choke.

OldTimer's picture

You know...

I don't know, but our attorney cranked out our numbers using the 'standard' calculations that are 'supposed' to be used, but when DH went in for the custody support, they found out that DCS uses their own calculations... how in the hell does that happen?!?! I mean, isn't there suppose to be a 'standard' calculator that EVERYONE uses? Because, according to DCS, they are requesting that DH pay $1000/month... when we calculated 700-800/month. I don't get that.

Eye-wink StepMom

Man has the intelligence to change his life,
Sometimes, he just fails to use it...

OldTimer Eye-wink
"Knowledge is often mistaken for intelligence. This is like mistaking a cup of milk for a cow."

Anonymous's picture

same issue

We have a big problem with my husbands ex! She has tried to make our life hell well finally i had enough and i took out a warrant against her for threating to kill me! anyway to pay us back she went to a lawyer to get higher child support and back health care and daycare which is all paid for by the state and in 2004 my husband was told that he could claim his son for eic by her and know she is try to get this money back as well what do we do! I am pregnant and we are broke can she really get all of this money???

Lisa Frances's picture

Mothers pay child support too..................

It's not always the men who pay child support. I have 2 bio kids (and 2 step kids). My Ex husband hits me up for child support for our 17yr old - $700 Aust. dollars a month, while I have worked my ass off to support our other child who lives with me. He sits on his butt and is a 'professional student' while I keep paying and paying and paying. Never got a cent from him. Sure I could quit working and not have to pay him. But I have a nice lifestyle to support too. I have no problem contributing for my son, but being taken for a financial ride is another matter.

Smiling Just keep smiling......................

Smiling Just keep smiling......................

Lisa Frances's picture

Mothers pay child support too..................

It's not always the men who pay child support. I have 2 bio kids (and 2 step kids). My Ex husband hits me up for child support for our 17yr old - $700 Aust. dollars a month, while I have worked my ass off to support our other child who lives with me. He sits on his butt and is a 'professional student' while I keep paying and paying and paying. Never got a cent from him. Sure I could quit working and not have to pay him. But I have a nice lifestyle to support too. I have no problem contributing for my son, but being taken for a financial ride is another matter.

Smiling Just keep smiling......................

Smiling Just keep smiling......................

stepmom2one's picture

Oh man that bites

at least she is 17 and will be 18 soon enough. Not to much longer to go.

Dona's picture

Not only....

is my BF paying child support, but he gets his kids 3 times of week instead of the once a week agreement that the BM made him agree to in court. Not only does he pay th emonthly support, but he pays for everythiong else for them. The BM always dumps the kids on him when they have a birthday party to go to, special trips, doctor appointments etc... When Bm has the kids, it has happened that she takes them shopping and then she sends my BF an email asking for him to pay 1/2 of the bill. He always agrees because he's afraid that he won't see the kids again.

I told him he needs to go to court and have the visitation dates changed to his favor because he really wants the kids full time. But the BM is thinking about it and her question to him was "will I still get the same finmancial benefits"? I was so pissed that he agreed to that because kids should not have a price tag on them.

I am divorced and have no kids, the only thing I received from my divorce was a empty bank account. I had to split everythign in 1/2 and because in 12 years I truste dhim with everything and my great paycheck, he was able to put aside lots of money and I had no way of getting it back.

The court system needs to be fair to hostes DH because not everyone out there is a bad father. My BF adores his kids and does averything for them.

The BM knows that I have a great job even if in another state and she's trying to get as much out of him as possible with the excuse of the kids.

What pisses me off the most is that my BF doesn't stand up to her.

Sebbie's picture

We are the opposite Dona.

De inimico non loquaris sed cogities.
My dh pays $12OO.OO a month for 1 child....this was awarded to bm in the state of Georgia..not based on what was his current income, but based on his previous earning potentials!!!!At the time, dh was on unemployment because his soon to be ex sent an annonoymous letter to his employer saying he was doing drugs...to top it off bm had him arrested for Domestic Violence(misdeamenor) however, that b.s charge( bm even ADMITTED, after dh was found guilty, to dh mother that she lied about dh hitting her, as this charge was made the night he packed his bags and left her after finding about an affair she had on him with his bestfriend/next door neighbor, and she was angry) has kept dh from obtaining employment in his previous higher earning field(as background checks are required to obtain employment in his previous field)...so dh has been having to pay this outrageous c.s payment on half the earnings he had before their divorce, because the judge felt dh still had the ability to earn this same income....NOT!!!!. Thankful we are on our way back to court(bm just got served papers last week)to get this b.s amount lowered..(that is if we do not get custody of ss, which we are seeking as bm has withheld visitation for almost 2 years, all the while recieving childsupport and taking trips out to California ect.)No woman, who by the way is a middle school teacher, NEEDS 1200.00 a month extra to support one child!!!! Maybe half of that is all she utelizes for ss....the rest is undoubtably her play money!

Dona's picture

BM'S play money...

BM'S play money is the correct terminology for some child support situations. For most BM's that I know use the money for themselves rather than the kids.

There should be a fair law for both divorced parties. My BF's ex has a great job and earns her own money. Don't see why she needs extra when he's paying for everything for the kids.

Have a great day.

sixxnguns's picture

tell me about it

BM gets child support but spends not one penny on FSS...he comes here in clothes too small for him, his underwear are so small they're starting to pinch his legs! But she won't buy him anything! But she's wearing $100 Merrells and clothes from the mall while her son is wearing clothes that don't fit him...we'd buy him new clothes but since we pay her every month to buy new clothes and party with her friends we can't pay our own bills and I have to get another job just to make ends meet...it's just not fair..and I think in these situations like this these BM's should have to report what they're spending the CS on!

Mocha2001's picture

Usually Fair

I believe if everyone is honest (I know wishful thinking) in Washington State that child support is calculated fairly. Sometimes they will use imputed income (what minimum wage would be if you had a job) if you haven't been working, or earning ability if you have a long history of making a certain amount.

But in general the court takes the partys' combined incomes, divides it by their individual incomes and comes up with each party's percentage of the combined household income. Then, however they come up with their statutory figure for how much it woudl cost to raise a child based on the parties combined household income, each party pays their percentage of what the state feels it costs to raise a child.

Let's keep it simple ... combined household income is $1000. State says it costs $100 to raise a child when the parties make $1000 per month. Dad makes $600 per month and mom makes $400 per month. Dad's percentage would be 60% and mom's 40%; therefore, dad pays $60 of the child support (or 60%) and mom is responsible for contributing (in theory) $400 (or 40%). These percentages are then carried over into extraordinary expenses: sports, activity fees, extra medical expenses, etc.

All in all I think Washington State's THEORY is fair. It's statutory so it isn't subject to much interpretation.

~ Katrina

~ Katrina

Dona's picture

That sounds fair......

if both parents work they should contribute to all activities and not a one way thing. Dad pays for child support, gets the kids all of the time and pays for all activities etc... BM goes on vacation and has her hobbies and keeps all of ther paycheck for herself.

Kids always bring over dirty laundry no matter how much time they spent at BM house (one week, two weeks, etc...). BF should put his foot down and go back to court.

WHAT_THE_HECK's picture

New York - unfair

My H has to pay for 2 kids....and in NY it is until the age of 21. It is not a fair split at all, we pay the ex-wife almost $4k a month now for 2 kids, and can barely afford our home now.

Sebbie's picture

In Georgia, where the original order was made,

De inimico non loquaris sed cogities.
the courts only take into account the NCP income, and the status the cp(often the mothers) were living when with the fathers, and they attempt to keep the mothers and children in that same status, what the mothers income is is not an issue. However, bm moved to Florida where we are seeking the modifications and custody change, and Florida is much like you described Washington Mocha...so we are extremely hopeful in the outcome we will get. Btw, dh and bm will be ordered to do a meditation before we get a court date. DH says that the courts are wasting their time with a mediation as he IS NOT budging on one thing he is asking for. His attorney says she is ok with that as she feels nothing he is seeking is unreasonable, but he still has to go to mediation first, then he gets a court date.Wish ours was moving as quickly as yours Mocha.

Mocha2001's picture

Mediation ...

Tomorrow's the Day S. ... keep your fingers crossed for us.

Mediation is mandatory in our state before any trial dates. However, we have a provision that also allows only for court ordered modifications to anything if the parties cannot agree - we asked for that last time, and got it, so we shouldn't have to go to mediation.

I'd tell your DH to find small ways that he IS willing to compromise. It will save money in the long run, AND ... just might be in the kids' best interests. The compromises don't have to be anything MAJOR at all, just to think of things he could live without ...

~ Katrina

~ Katrina

Anne Summers's picture


In my state is not worth the time, the money or the paper it is written on. No matter if both parties come to an agreement---if there is no court order stating mediation resolution then the whole thing is out the window. If it never makes it to a court order then one party disagrees for whatever reason then mediation is null and void---and can't even be brought up in court?!?! How silly is that???

Sometimes you have to test the limits to show you're not a doormat.

Sometimes you have to test the limits to show you're not a doormat.

helpless in the south's picture

so angry

I'm sure I'm going through nothing new. I'm just having a hard time dealing with the anger and helplessness my husband's ex is causing. I really just want her to disappear.

We have been married for nine years, and live with my son from a first marriage. My sd comes every other weekend for visitation. She's a great kid and everyone gets along well.

This summer, my husband's ex decided she wanted more cs so she took him back to court. Around the same time, my sd decided she wants to come live with us (she's 12) but bm won't consider it because (I am sure) she wants the money. She assumes my husband put his daughter up to this because of the cs, but he would never do that. BM travels half the month and leaves my sd with her husband. They do nothing for the kid. She sits in front of the television all week long. She's lonely and bored, but bm won't consider losing cs money. Now she's quit her job and stays at home on the cs check while I work. We are still in proceedings over the new cs but we know it will be increasing, just not how much.

Sometimes it's just really hard to feel so out of control. I feel like we are being punished and it's not fair. We take this kid everywhere and really enjoy being with her. Now we won't be able to afford to take her places, but her bm will have another new car and fake tan. I want to kick something. How do I resign myself to this?

Rebecca2's picture

Amount of Child Support

I am curious. In the state of Illinois, cs is 28% for 2 children. We try very hard to make sure that everything gets paid on time. My husband had an accident this year and was out of work for over 6 months. During that time the company messed up the cs payments, besides the fact that he was down to 60% of his original salary. We had more than a difficult time trying to make ends meet, and pay the cs.

During this time the BM decided to go for an increase in cs. Since she did not fill out the paperwork properly, the court denied it.

But, now...because of all the problems with the cs and the job (the cs gets paid right from his paycheck), we are getting threatening letters from the cs agency saying pay up or lose your drivers license and any certifications you have have acquired.

We don't have the money. We can barely pay the bills. We have been in constant touch with the cs agency to make sure that they know we are trying...but now this???

I am overwhelmed and very upset. My husband and I are not bad people. We've just had a really hard time financially this year. Why are we made out to be the bad guys?

Another question that has been bothering me. CS is something that is supposed to HELP support the child, not totally support the child. So, my question here is this...does it take a normal family 56% of their income to raise 2 children? If so, then the 28% is justified...but, I find it hard to believe that it does.

So, what gives??? How can the situation be resolved. We want to help support the kids, after all, they are his...but shouldn't the residential parent have to kick in too?

Okay, enough venting for now....

exwife's picture

amount of child support

As I read your comments, I began to think you sound like my ex. Chid support is for the children. It is to be used for their well being. But I agree to many times it is not always used for them. If you want to know what gives - then pease take into consideration that you married to a man who has children by another woman, not all exwives are out to personally destroy you financially. "So, what gives??? How can the situation be resolved. We want to help support the kids, after all, they are his...but shouldn't the residential parent have to kick in too?"

If you want to support the kids, realize that you are with him and as you put it after all, they are his. I understand your frustration but please think about the other side of the coin; and how you would feel, if you were not able to get what the kids needed. Even if you are working and the present MRS. is so obsessed with "his" children, that she has to share "his" income with.

stepmom2one's picture

I don't think that

she was saying she didn't need to pay anything. She was merely saying it does not take 56% of total income to raise two kids. And it DOESN'T. If that were true we would all live out of a box.

new evil stepmom's picture

in wisconsin

we have 50/50 and the court has a formula they minus bm's income form bf's income and then rate his cs percentage from the difference. you might want to look into that in illinois and see if they have anything like that. before bf found a good attorney he was paying 17% ($1200/month for one child) 6 years ago, he now only pays 8.5% (approx. $386/month) after finding a great attorney.

Elizabeth's picture

Child support is a mess

My husband and BM have "equal" custody of SD. However, BM moved to another city and left SD with us 4 years ago. But, she won't sign a modification to the custody agreement, so the divorce order stands. Luckily, we don't pay CS, but we have the child more than 75 percent of the time so I feel BM should pay. In addition, we had to buy a bigger house (unless I wanted our bio-children to share a tiny room and SD to have her own room). So higher utilities, etc. Plus, we pay ALL of SD's medical bills, daycare expenses, activity fees, etc. What makes me even madder is that when BM has SD, she expects us to pay half of all expenses (acitivies, medical, etc.). Wish we could go after her for child support, but husband doesn't want to "rock the boat." Ugh.

new evil stepmom's picture

i don't know

what states you live in, but in wisconsin you can petition (not sure if this is the correct term) a mediation to determine if you can procede to a court hearing to change placement/cs. if you can do this where you all come from, erinjb1 should be able to lower cs and elizabeth should be able to get cs from bm.