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BM moved away and isn't paying her child support-do we still have to pay travel expenses??

JenG's picture

My SD's BM up and moved out of state over the summer with her new husband and their child. My husband was already CP, but they worked out a new parenting plan for visitation, which is basically a school year/school break schedule. The travel expenses are set up as 50/50; BM gets them to her new home and we get them back to ours.

Before her move, BM wanted my husband to waive out his CS case. He told her no, but would give her a few months to get settled before turning in a new CS worksheet. Since her move 3 months ago, she has been living with family, has not found a job (she has told family her intention is to go to school and not work) and has not mentioned CS at all. Her husband is employed and apparently making good money because she is taking several trips, including one to come see my SD's. That is good for the skids, but she has expressed it is her intention to take them to her home for 1/2 of the holiday break and then again in the summer and is already dictating to us how she wants to work out transportation. I'm a little frustrated because I feel it was her choice to move, she isn't paying her CS or doing anything to help out with my SD's expenses (activities,etc.) and expects us to still foot half the bill for transportation.

Has anyone been in this situation and if so, can we tell her that because she has not fulfilled her CS obligation that we aren't going to pay half of travel expenses? I feel that I should say that we aren't money hungry. We were actually going to tuck away the CS to help pay for travel expenses so that it would not come out of our pocket because it's so expensive. Also, my husband would never withhold my SD's from her. If she wants to buy a ticket to come here and see them, she would have her parenting time (she has family she can stay with). I just don't see how we will be able to swing this without that savings because the travel expense one way is about $600, but I really don't want us to end up back in court. Help. :?

stormabruin's picture

If the current order states that your DH is obligated to 1/2 of the travel expenses, he needs to follow the order.

If she isn't keeping up her part of the order, your DH needs to file for contempt. If either of them wants to make changes to the existing order, it has to be done through court. They can't just say "if he/she isn't doing this, I'm not going to do this".

If your DH doesn't follow through with the ordered travel expenses, BM can take him for contempt.

JenG's picture

Unfortunately, I know you are right. It's just so frustrating. The worst part is they turned in the PP and it shows up on their case history, but the court has yet to either approve it or deny it. Maybe they don't if it's a mutual agreement? I guess it's time for my DH to head down to CS enforcement and fill out a new worksheet.

NancyL's picture

Force her to purchase the first leg of the trip to her house before you purchase the second leg. If she does not do her part you are off the hook otherwise you will have to pay.

JenG's picture

THANK GOD that's how my DH set it up. At the time, he did it to guarantee that he could get his kids home without having to pay both ways, which has happened before in the city where we live when she lived across town (that is an hour and a half drive). They always seem to have car issues.

Starla's picture

Listen to the comments above i would advise you. My first thoughts were, she is up to something & knows what she wants from it. Rather scary if your not careful. Be strong & follow that order, if he questions you, have him read your post/replies.

Good luck!!!

WTHDISUF's picture

So you guys have extended a MILE and she wants 5 Miles? Seems reasonable. She up and moved and is not paying her Support. Plus DH gave her 3 additional months before he took the appropriate legal actions with the Courts. Now you all are letting her dictate how to accommodate her travel arrangements? (Maybe your DH and mine are brothers, lol). Seriously, you guys need to put a stop to it and require her to hold up her end or else go on to court. If she wants to see them, make it clear that she is responsible for it financially across the board for her end of it. What can she do about it--? Nothing b/c she's at your mercy right now as she is technically in contempt of court.

I just wouldn't do it and if she didn't see them, that's on her. I'd also turn in paperwork immediately as she's already trying to get used to her new arrangements. Too bad for her that she does not have an option NOT TO WORK when she has kids and a support order! Unless her dear old DH is going to foot her bill, she has to find a job and go to school Part Time.

Kilgore SMom's picture

I'm sorry I don't have the answer. But that is a very good question.

I think I would tell Bm that she can pay for the whole trip because she hasn't keep up with her CS. If she complains let her take ya'll to court. SD is old enough for ya'll to explain that that is alot of money and you don't have it put up because BM is not paying CS. However if Bm wants to pay for the trip both ways she can.

I have never thought it was fair for the parent that is suppose to pay child support, not pay but still get to see their child. While the other parent has to struggle to pay for everything the other parents gets off free, in most single mother cases anyway. If a parent doesn't want to support his or her child they shouldn't get to see them.

Our BM feels like she shouldn't have to pay cs. She has three son by different daddys, the oldest is 14 yrs old, our son is 8 yrs. and the youngest is 5 years old. BM is suppose to pay cs to the oldest and our son (SS). She always makes excuses of why she can't. When she got out of prison in 2011 DH gave her till Jan 2012 to get a car and a house and basically on her feet before he filed for his cs. The daddy to the oldest son filed on her because he is sick of her shit. Let me tell you by July she was running and druggin again. When she gets out this time DH will file asap. No more chances for our BM.

StepKidto3Momto3's picture

Court orders will be your friend. How upset would the SDs be if they don't get to see BM and their half-sib for the holidays this year? I could see paying for their trip HOME to you, just this once. After that I would say that BM must pay 100% travel costs, or at least 100% if she is not current on support (or adjust support so she still pays 100% but has a slightly lower CS amount)

JenG's picture

Yeah, our state is pretty strict with CS issues too. Thank goodness. I guess when you abandon kids you already have and you have CS obligations, you sort of forefit your right to be a stay at home parent, unless, of course, your new spouse is willing to foot that bill, which hers is not. They are "his" kids until it comes to actually taking care of them monetarily. What a mess. It must be nice not to have to worry about how much of a financial burden you put on the other parent when you decide to take off and not pay your CS.