Need guidence on child support, its long but WE NEED HELP
I have a stepdaughter who is turning seven this month, her father, my husband, and her mother have joint custody and have been divorced for 6 1/2 years. At the time of divorce, mother agreed to not have child support. So, husband has not had to pay child support but has certainly paid for things upon request of mother and for extra with no questions asked. My concern is that mother is planning to take my husband back to court to request child support payments. I have many concerns about this the first being that she has treated my husband with disrespect and treats him as if he is not entitled to the same parental rights and responsibilities as she. She repeatedly states that she,"lets him be in his daughter's life," and certainly makes sure he doesn't ever get extra time with daughter without punishment. THe other is over the the last four years I have been invovled, mother has had two boyfriends one who lived in who mysteriously moved out after getting her pregnant and stole money from her, the other who physically abused her and prompted her to flee with daughter without notifying her father she had taken out of school and 3 hrs away. Among other issues such as step-daughter broke her arm twice in mother's care and crawled out on the roof of their townhome through her second story bedroom window. Point is what do we do? Child's mother lives much better than we newer car, two flat screen tv, nicer clothes, better furniture, nicer home. This is all great for step daughter but what are we to do? What are my husband's rights as a father? It would be preferred that if she is struggling financially that perhaps we have more time at our house to counter balance the finicial strain on the mother. But, as this makes since it often is not the likely result. We would love more time with stepdaughter and feel it is father's right to spend time with daughter. We cannot help that mother's spending habits are poor and she has all along and is currently making more than us put together. What do we do to protect ourselves and yet do what is right for step daughter. The other should and when this happens how do we remain pleasent with her mother it is already a very strained and often un pleasent relationship.